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3wishes14

Third time on accutane (!) - a log

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Posted

Can’t believe I’m back here again.  

This is my third round (first in 2010 and second in 2015 which I blogged about on this very same forum) after relapsed dramatically around August/September and then going on antibiotics and differin on october 1st. I was on lymecycline, doxy, and mino - none of which did anything except make my acne extremely worse.

I would say my acne has relapsed worse than it did last time. It’s about the same it was pre first round of accutane. What started off as hundreds of closed comedones which spread across my face in 2018 has turned into them coming to the surface in huge, angry, cysts and now even nodules. My cheeks are by far the worst but my jaw line is also suffering.

I started 40mg on January 25th. Current plan is 40mg pd for 4 months which I’m skeptical about due to the fact that it’s relatively low and short for me. Anyway. I will blog the whole experience! Will upload pics when I get chance too.

Day 1

Nothing to report!

Day 2

Woke up with a very dry mouth, and my face went extremely red and angry after washing it!? My elbows felt a bit dry and itchy, as did my hands. Nothing major. 

Day 3

More of the same. Lips are dry but they’ve been permanently dry since my last course of accutane. I haven’t seen a deterioration yet but I am using aquaphor this time round.. 

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Posted

Day 4

Feeling positive today. With the horrible spots I’ve had on my cheeks (about 4 on right cheek and 5 on left), many of them are coming to a head or flattening out by themselves - some of them never came to a whitehead but are disappearing anyways. So I’m feeling better about my cheeks today anyway!

Not much to report about side effects. Lips do feel... different? They don’t feel chapped, but they don’t feel moist either and putting on lip balm doesn’t really seem to help them feel moist. I’m sure they will get much dryer, I doubt aquaphor is responsible for them not being too bad yet.

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Posted

Day 5

The nasty cheek spots continue to flatten. Lips still feel different but I’m not sure dry is the word I’d use to describe them..!?

I did get itchy dry skin on my right hand today but I did have dry skin in the same place a few week backs after getting dermatitis so could be from that still.

So overall, nothing major to report with side effects! 

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Posted

Day 6

A day of two halves!

Woke up feeling great as cheek spots continue to flatten. I should probably add I’ve been using Acnicide on them (BP) this whole time - but I’m imagining this is the last time I will be able to get away with using BP whilst on accutane now as I start drying out. My lips still felt different this morning but definitely not dry, in fact quite moist! 

Then, late afternoon, I caught sight of my skin in daylight and wanted to cry. The texture and size of my pores is horrendous, as well as my awful scarring. 

Soon after, I felt my lips start to sting. I’ve applied aquaphor since but it hasn’t done anything, and all evening my lips have continued to sting. Sadly I think they are starting to really dry up. I’ve just taken my makeup off and cleansed and noticed my nose was dry and flaky.

Yep, sit tight, here come the side effects..!!

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Posted

Day 7

Seven whole days! 

Spots continue to flatten out on cheek. 

Lips are the same as yesterday. Feeling tight and looking more red now, but not unmanageable. 

Last night before bed I noticed dry and flaky skin on my nose. 

This morning, things have escalated even more - my whole face is dry and flaky. Make-up now looks a bit ridiculous despite the fact I use a foundation designed for dry skin anyway. My face looks dull with no shine on it apart from the tiniest bit of oil on my head now at the end of the day.

Cya later, oil!

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Posted

Day 8

Not a lot to report. Lips seem manageable - I thought they were on a slippery slope for dryness but maybe I was wrong?

Also skin on face doesn’t seem as dry today. Very strange. 

Nothing to report with regards to actual spots, little change. 

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Posted

Day 10

Double figures! Not a lot to report hence me not blogging yesterday. Dry lips are still manageable as long as I’m applying aquaphor 3 times a day and blistex relief cream in between. They haven’t bled.

To be honest, worst side effect at this point is dry mouth and thirst which really doesn’t bother  me as I always make an effort to drink lots anyway! 

Skin - generally things feel flat which is good. My right jaw is covered in hard bumps (very similar to those in my last blog of second accurate round) - they are large but not squeezeable. I’ve also got one of them in cheek.. they seemed to have flared up around the same time I started accutane but I forgot to blog about them! 

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Posted

Day 11

Definitely getting some flare ups along my right jawline now. Some of the bumps have been coming to a head. They’re very tender and painful.

Worst side effect today has been an itchy scalp which has just kindly kicked in in bed, and is now stopping me from sleeping!

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Posted

Hi! I relapsed and started accutane round 2 in January. As much as I wish we both had clear skin, it is nice to see that I am not alone. I am on day 27 and even though I know what symptoms to expect, my initial breakout is very discouraging. It makes me not want to do anything and I am a very social person. I wonder why round 1 did not work for me, and round 1 and 2 did not work for you? I thought maybe it was either random/genetic/varies person to person, or that I was not taking high enough doses (30-60mg a day), or that I was not absorbing it (not eating the pill with meals or a fatty food). So this time around every time I take it I eat some nuts, a slice of cheese, or half an avocado. I am also trying to keep up on my diet because I know I couldn't take too high a dose last time because my triglycerides got high. I'd love to hear your thoughts on your relapses.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, acneruinsmylife said:

Hi! I relapsed and started accutane round 2 in January. As much as I wish we both had clear skin, it is nice to see that I am not alone. I am on day 27 and even though I know what symptoms to expect, my initial breakout is very discouraging. It makes me not want to do anything and I am a very social person. I wonder why round 1 did not work for me, and round 1 and 2 did not work for you? I thought maybe it was either random/genetic/varies person to person, or that I was not taking high enough doses (30-60mg a day), or that I was not absorbing it (not eating the pill with meals or a fatty food). So this time around every time I take it I eat some nuts, a slice of cheese, or half an avocado. I am also trying to keep up on my diet because I know I couldn't take too high a dose last time because my triglycerides got high. I'd love to hear your thoughts on your relapses.

Hi! So interesting to hear your story and sad to hear you have relapsed as well. What was your dose and length of course the first time round? My first round was 40/40/40/40 and second was 40/60/60/60. My derm is thinking 40/40/40/40 this time which concerns me, but she assures me the fact I’ve been on a higher dose before won’t matter?

How are you managing your IB? This is the worst part - everything will clear up soon so hang on in there! I’d find it really hard to tell if I was having an IB as my skin has been on a downward spiral since aug/September anyway. 

I wonder why we relapsed too. Are you female? I wonder whether my issue is hormonal.

I definitely haven’t always paid attention to how exactly I’ve taken my dose. First round I think I just took the tablet whenever. Last time round I took it with lunch. This time I’m making an effort to take it with a fatty meal, but oddly, this time I’m having the least side effects I can remember which makes me think im not absorbing it properly!?

please keep in touch!

Day 12

Scalp was itchy this morning. Lips dry as always but if I slaher aquaphor on in the morning, it ties me over for hours which is fine by me! 

Some spots on jaw are still in process of coming to a head. One in particular is really sore.

Literally nothing else to say. My skin was actually looking oily-ish in the mirror just now :/ I’m kind of concerned it’s not very dry!?

 

EDIT - whoops! Forgot to say! This morning I had my bloods taken to check my hormone levels and possibly PCOS as an underlying cause of my acne. Should get results on Friday!

Edited by 3wishes14

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Posted

first round was 30/40/40/60/40. My triglycerides got a little high on 60 so they took me down. This time I started on 40 and the doc mentioned increasing to 80 which is wild to me! I have a feeling I might increase to 60 and THEN 80 if my blood levels are okay. but at the same time makes me hope maybe higher doses will work better, and will shorten how long I will have to take it?

I am female. I am covering my IB in massive amounts of liquid makeup and a thin layer of foundation powder. I have good and bad days pretty much every day. I have to stop PICKING bc I keep creating these horrible horrible scabs that do not heal fast and are not easily covered by makeup. I often get small whiteheads that go away. I just hate breaking out by mouth bc thats where we literally communicate and it draws attention. My chin has all these tiny bumps that haven't reached the surface yet and I'm not looking forward to when they do, unless its really small and uneventful -- that would be great! I read that you don't think your symptoms are severe enough -- I'd still give it a few days, I don't think I experienced too too much near day 12 either.

I was under a lot of stress when I relapsed too but once the stress was over the acne stayed ): its nice to have somebody to talk to !

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Posted
2 hours ago, acneruinsmylife said:

first round was 30/40/40/60/40. My triglycerides got a little high on 60 so they took me down. This time I started on 40 and the doc mentioned increasing to 80 which is wild to me! I have a feeling I might increase to 60 and THEN 80 if my blood levels are okay. but at the same time makes me hope maybe higher doses will work better, and will shorten how long I will have to take it?

I am female. I am covering my IB in massive amounts of liquid makeup and a thin layer of foundation powder. I have good and bad days pretty much every day. I have to stop PICKING bc I keep creating these horrible horrible scabs that do not heal fast and are not easily covered by makeup. I often get small whiteheads that go away. I just hate breaking out by mouth bc thats where we literally communicate and it draws attention. My chin has all these tiny bumps that haven't reached the surface yet and I'm not looking forward to when they do, unless its really small and uneventful -- that would be great! I read that you don't think your symptoms are severe enough -- I'd still give it a few days, I don't think I experienced too too much near day 12 either.

I was under a lot of stress when I relapsed too but once the stress was over the acne stayed ): its nice to have somebody to talk to !

Ahh Interesting. You would have reached a pretty decent culmulative dose last time then? I wouldn’t fret over being bumped up to 80! Like you say, it may even shorten the course and it may not be as much of a jump as going from 40 to 60 for example. 

I hear ya. I’m terrible at picking and squeezing. I’ve got so many bright red marks on me today from fresh spots I’ve picked and they’ve then bled!

I too have hundreds of closed comedones on my chin and jaw. I hope not every single one comes to a head :( but that’s been the pattern so far. 

Do you think your acne could be hormonal?

Very true! But I only have to look back at the blog from my second round (which I blogged on here!) to see how quickly the accutane kicked in last time. I was having nose bleeds and all sorts by day 5! I’m wondering if maybe I’m now taking a different brand or something!? Idk

so glad we’re in this together!

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Posted

Day 13

Spots are still feeling a bit flatter today although I have had one blow up on my chin - 100% my fault as it was a closed comedone I squeezed!

I washed my hair last night for the first time since Saturday afternoon! Hooray for no grease. However, the downside is that despite me using an intensive hair mask and shampoo/conditioner last night, my hair feels awfully dry and dull today.. 

Can’t have it all!?

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Posted (edited)

Day 14 (which makes no sense as I started accutane on a Friday, so surely tomorrow is my two week accutane anniversary! This always pickles my head)

Not a lot to report. I’m still using BP cream on nasty spots. I’ve probably got about 3 cysty whiteheads I’m using BP on. I’m also using BP on those hard jawline lumps I keep talking about but it doesn’t do anything on them at all.

Side effects are absolutely fine. My lips were okay this morning. I put aquaphor on about 2-3 hours ago and still don’t really feel the need to apply any more cream of any kind. Skin on face is fine - oily still if anything :/ scalp is still EXTREMELY itchy

Edited by 3wishes14

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Posted

Day 15

Was feeling lazy last night so didn’t bother with BP OR moisturiser. Big mistake! I woke up this morning and the skin around my current spots (that I’ve been putting BP on over the last few weeks) was dry and flakey. Should have moisturised. Lesson learnt 

Also noticed a very small bit of blood in nostril this morning.

Feeling disheartened about skin today. I’ve had another lump come up on left cheek. I now reckon I’ve got two lumps on left cheek, two in a row on right cheek (one of which is REALLY painful today) and one on right jaw.  

At its worst, like when I started this round, I had a few big whiteheads on each cheek so in some ways things are better than they were then. But I still can’t help but notice the HUNDREDS of closed comedones all over my face that won’t budge. They’ve been there since about August now and after 4 months of antibiotics and now accutane to see no progress in them is very disheartening :(

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Posted

Reading someone being on accutane 3 times makes me feel really uneasy !!!

I understand your reasoning though. I hope everything works out for you. 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Justdry said:

Reading someone being on accutane 3 times makes me feel really uneasy !!!

I understand your reasoning though. I hope everything works out for you. 

Don’t worry, I think I’m a pretty rare case. I’m striving to find and address the root cause (I hate throwing medication at anything to be honest!), but my relapse was getting so bad it was starting to affect my mental health and I was really worried about scarring. It was the only option I had whilst I strived to find the root cause!

Also I am British... as much as I love the NHS, it is a national service at the end of the day and from what I read on here, those from other places have stronger and longer courses. Maybe I would never have relapsed if my culmulative dose was high enough first time round. 

Thank you for your support. Means a lot!

Ok so I know I’m blogging twice today but... 

PS Holy moly my lips are AWFUL today!

PPS Rung for blood test results but my GP has been on leave this week. Won’t get them til Wednesday now 

Edited by 3wishes14

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Posted

Im in the same situation as yours. except my first round was in 2012, my second was in 2015 too and im with the pills here in my desk for micro-dosing a third round

im just afraid to lose my hair, thats whats keeping me out of it, did u experienced hair loss?

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Posted
2 hours ago, ajaxz said:

Im in the same situation as yours. except my first round was in 2012, my second was in 2015 too and im with the pills here in my desk for micro-dosing a third round

im just afraid to lose my hair, thats whats keeping me out of it, did u experienced hair loss?

The hair loss made me think twice about starting round 2, too. I never had severe bald spots but I shed a lot of hair and it felt overall thinner and dryer during and probably up until a year after stopping 'tane. It was a hard decision, have a full head of hair and a terrible ugly face? Or have thin brittle hair and a flawless smooth face? I chose my face. because there's extensions and wigs. :) I think with enough time and moisture and healing after Accutane, hair can start growing better. Or so I'd like to think.

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Posted
5 hours ago, ajaxz said:

Im in the same situation as yours. except my first round was in 2012, my second was in 2015 too and im with the pills here in my desk for micro-dosing a third round

im just afraid to lose my hair, thats whats keeping me out of it, did u experienced hair loss?

Interesting, I hear about microdosing a lot but it’s never something I’ve been offered. What will be your dosage? 

I have never experienced hair loss on accutane (touch wood). In fact reading my second time blog I can see I thought my hair grew quicker on it. Are you male or female? Maybe micro dosing won’t be enough to trigger any hair loss?

2 hours ago, acneruinsmylife said:

The hair loss made me think twice about starting round 2, too. I never had severe bald spots but I shed a lot of hair and it felt overall thinner and dryer during and probably up until a year after stopping 'tane. It was a hard decision, have a full head of hair and a terrible ugly face? Or have thin brittle hair and a flawless smooth face? I chose my face. because there's extensions and wigs. :) I think with enough time and moisture and healing after Accutane, hair can start growing better. Or so I'd like to think.

That is a really hard decision! I’ve often thought about what I would do if I started losing hair - stop the accutane or persevere? I think I’d probably keep going as well. From everyone I’ve heard who had hair loss on accutane, it’s always grown back...?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, 3wishes14 said:

Interesting, I hear about microdosing a lot but it’s never something I’ve been offered. What will be your dosage? 

I have never experienced hair loss on accutane (touch wood). In fact reading my second time blog I can see I thought my hair grew quicker on it. Are you male or female? Maybe micro dosing won’t be enough to trigger any hair loss?

That is a really hard decision! I’ve often thought about what I would do if I started losing hair - stop the accutane or persevere? I think I’d probably keep going as well. From everyone I’ve heard who had hair loss on accutane, it’s always grown back...?

My dosage is 20, up to 30mg per week. medium-term is enough to halt my acne and try to avoid sides.

My acne isnt severe, is mild but resistent, in my opinion, there is no "final dose" that will cure it for me, once i stop, it will come back.  Just time can cure my skin from my hormones i guess. The micro-dosage is good so i can start fresh again and see what happen one year after.

I lost hair in my second round, thats why im concerned. My hair is still good, and not shedding anymore, i think i recovery almost all the hair i lost through the second round, but it was scary, i was taking 40 up to 60mg day too. thats a overkill for my case.

Edited by ajaxz

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Posted (edited)

Day 16

More of the same.

Side effects have probably been at their worst today so far - bad lips, headaches, scalp still slightly itchy even though I washed it with nizoral last night. It’s also very flakey now - I wore black today and when I brushed my hair I ended up covered in scalp flakes. Weirdly, my skin is yet again looking very oily today.

Last night I caved and squeezed some of those hard lumps I was telling you about. They all popped in the same fashion - a very small bit of clear fluid came out, followed by blood. Not one single one had pus in. I put BP on them before bed, but was sad to see that they’d barely changed tonight nor throughout the day.

So my face is now feeling very lumpy. Altogether, including ones I’ve managed to at least partially pop, there are two lumps on my left cheek, two on right cheek, and five on right jaw. 

I have no bog standard “whiteheads” at present. I still have hundreds of closed comedones.

Pretty sure blackheads on nose and on side of nose have been coming closer to surface this past week. 

Thats it! 

Edited by 3wishes14

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Posted

Urgh, can mods delete the post above? This is my blog, not a place for hard selling. 

Day 17

Scalp is so itchy this morning. That aside, nothing else new to report. Lips still dry. Hair still dry. Possibly some tiny flattening of squeezed lumps but nothing major!

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Posted (edited)

@ajaxz @3wishes14 I have a question to ask since we are all on our 2nd or 3rd round. First, what sex are you? I am female. Second, what regimen did you use on your skin AFTER accutane? What cleanser, any exfoliation, any masks, what moisturizer, did you put anything else on your face or change your diet? I am wondering if our acne came back because we weren't cleaning our skin the way we are supposed to for acne prone skin. Maybe some people just need several rounds, maybe its sex-related, maybe some people need higher doses or micro doses, maybe a diet is required in addition, or maybe we need to care for our skin differently?

After my first round I continued using cetaphil thick moisturizer and gentle cleanser, every morning and night. I also used a CVS brand simple exfoliation scrub maybe twice a week. I also used epiduo as tiny spot treatment. Isn't this all that clear skin people use? I thought that was all I needed since I was then a clear skin person. But, maybe I should have done some crazy complicated mask every other night? Maybe I should have gone to a spa and had them do some crazy pore opener and cleanser once a month or something? After accutane I was so afraid to try something new for fear of causing more breakouts. I can't decide if I wasn't cleaning well enough or if I was being too harsh and caused irritation and more breakouts.

 I really want/need this to be my last round of accutane. I'd like to hear your thoughts.

oh I also didn't wear a lot of makeup at first then wore it on weekends then wore it more often when I started relapsing. Is makeup the issue???

Edited by acneruinsmylife
added sentence at end

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, acneruinsmylife said:

@ajaxz @3wishes14 I have a question to ask since we are all on our 2nd or 3rd round. First, what sex are you? I am female. Second, what regimen did you use on your skin AFTER accutane? What cleanser, any exfoliation, any masks, what moisturizer, did you put anything else on your face or change your diet? I am wondering if our acne came back because we weren't cleaning our skin the way we are supposed to for acne prone skin. Maybe some people just need several rounds, maybe its sex-related, maybe some people need higher doses or micro doses, maybe a diet is required in addition, or maybe we need to care for our skin differently?

After my first round I continued using cetaphil thick moisturizer and gentle cleanser, every morning and night. I also used a CVS brand simple exfoliation scrub maybe twice a week. I also used epiduo as tiny spot treatment. Isn't this all that clear skin people use? I thought that was all I needed since I was then a clear skin person. But, maybe I should have done some crazy complicated mask every other night? Maybe I should have gone to a spa and had them do some crazy pore opener and cleanser once a month or something? After accutane I was so afraid to try something new for fear of causing more breakouts. I can't decide if I wasn't cleaning well enough or if I was being too harsh and caused irritation and more breakouts.

 I really want/need this to be my last round of accutane. I'd like to hear your thoughts.

oh I also didn't wear a lot of makeup at first then wore it on weekends then wore it more often when I started relapsing. Is makeup the issue???

I am male.

After my second round i was using salycilic acid + benzoil peroxide(clyndoxil), no moisturizer, i had few pimples here and there ocasionally they didnt bother. But after like 2 years in this regimen my skin start to become very dry. Its when the acne started to get out of control.
i started to get irritation from salycilica acid + benzoil peroxide, so i started to use a jojoba oil moisturizer and wasnt enough. 
i stopped the salycilic acid, then my skin start to get worse and worse because they were working for my clogged pores. But i couldnt come back because irritation was breaking me out to. so i give a break of everything. and was just using moisturizer, then i was experiencing some sort of cystic acne, its when i realize the battle was lost, then jumped to accutane again. 
I will follow this topic, since i started to use basically at the same time of the OP, and will eventually share my results
 

Edited by ajaxz

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