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GuardedlyOptimistic

Need of Some Major Support

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Hi Guys,

I don't know what got into me yesterday but I cried for 3 hours straight. You'd think with the tane behind me I'd be jumping off the walls. But, I guess we always want more. My skin texture is so uneven. I feel so unattractive. I think the inflammation is gone and has left my skin looking pretty damaged. I need some words of wisdome and kindness.

I'm on the verge of doing something reckless like microdermabraing, but i stopped tane last week.

I'm scared.

Really scared.

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its okayy! we're all here for you.. does the skin actually feel damaged? you can always load up on some sunscreen and go out for a tan since the spring is coming =] im sure that will make the uneven skin look less noticable! i have light skin.. and the red marks left behind are really killing me.. but im pulling through =]

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Take it one step at a time, your acnes gone, your off accutane, now give your skin a chance to heal. If time passes and your skin hasn't healed then you can look into other treatments.

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Guest Craigems

Hang in there GO, i know it sucks ... i think it feels like i'm going through a rough patch again ... i went to my derm and he's upped my prednisone again ... its like taking a step backwards once again. I think your just going through a hard stage... i still think that picture of you that isnt really you <---- is hot and i'm sure thats how good you look smile.gif.

I dont make sence but thats alright coz i'm Aussy biggrin.gif we just have cool accents rolleyes.gif

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GO - I cut and pasted a letter from a doctor friend that I found while my daughter was going through treatment. I wrote to him again when I was freaking out about after treatment and how she looked etc. etc. I thought you might like to see it. This doctor was an accutane patient himself and was a great comfort to me. As I told you before, 6 months down the line is going to make a lot of difference in how your skin looks. - Regards and peace, Boston

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Yes, I do remember your initial questions regarding your daughter's

treatment. Since I'm on call and up until the wee hours of the morning let me see what I can do to answer your questions:

1. She still gets one or two big ones per week. Is this normal?

Perfectly normal. On some occasions people will still need to have some type of treatment for their acne whether it be topicals or oral antibiotics. Studies have shown that people who have undergone one round of accutane have acne that is milder and much more responsive to the traditional treatments for acne. As I said, it is a fabulous drug but it is not necessarily a 100% cure all of the time but most people see a significant improvement. Your daughter may experience an occasional flare but it should not be anywhere near as bad

as it was in the past. (I get a breakout here and there myself but when I look at the pre-accutane pictures of myself, I almost forget how bad it

actually was.)

2. Can I expect that to slow down as the months pass? I’ve heard that some people get better with time even if they’re not clear after 6 months. Is this true?

People do get better six months out. The drug has a very long

half life (time to clear from your body) which is why your daughter will

still experience some dryness and chapping. The drug still exerts its

effects over those six months and this is why they tell women of

child-bearing age who were on accutane not to try to conceive or take the risk of getting pregnant for 6 months after completion of the drug. This is also why nobody does skin resurfacing until 6-9 months after completion as you can still see benefits from the medication and the persons skin still remains quite sensitive.

3. At what point do I contact my regular dermatologist with these questions and concerns if the breakouts continue?

Give it a little time. The derm should probably see your daughter 6-8 weeks post-treatment to ensure that things are going well.

4. What treatment do you recommend for scar remission?

I'm assuming you mean treatment for the scars that remain. For post-inflammatory scars (red marks) topical Vitamin E or vitamin C seems to help (there is also a brand name product called mederma which has similar components and can help). The other answers would be a little bit of time. Once the 6 months post treatment have passed, see how your daughters skin looks. Dermatologists can do a procedure called microdermabrasion which is essentially sandblasting the skin with tiny beads to smooth out the surface. It is painless but unfortunately it is considered a purely cosmetic procedure so most insurances will not cover it and it can cost around $200 a treatment. Most

people need 4-5 treatments (or so they say). For pitted scars,

microdermabrasion can help. They also do collagen injections to fill in the defect. I actually give one or two intradermal injections of saline solution as this seems to work well for my patients plus it is very inexpensive. Collagen injections are costly and not covered by insurance. End result is that you would have to discuss your daughter's options with your derm to see what he/she recommends.

I hope that this answers your questions. Take care and best of luck.

(doctor signed his name here)

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Dear GO,

I'm in your boat- quitting accutane in a few days and parts of my face are quite uneven. The most important thing you can do is wear a hard-core sunscreen, which will help your body heal the hyperpigmentation. Wear it religiously and never tan and your skin will improve for sure. Till then: makeup. That's my plan at least. I'm banking on it! berry

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GO-

Isnt it strange how skin can be the true bain of our existance? It controls your mood, your outlook, your social habits, your domestic life..etc.

When I am broken out, Im hiding. When Im not broken out- Im still not satisfied, because theres a warzone on my face that doesnt quite let me be free from make up. And make up..that's a ritual. Covering everything just so, seeing it in the bathroom light and thinking "I just wasted an hour and I look blotchy anyway. Im not going out."

I understand what you feel right now. Is your skin clear? I hope so. Just think about it, though... Its all fixable. You need to wait the required amount of time because you will end up with major scars, as opposed to these superficial surface ones. But- when the time is right- Go for it! Im going to do some major skin overhaul when/if I ever stop breaking out.

Skin should just be that- Skin. A covering..an outer layer..a Shell. But, to people like us.. Its a mask, a trap, a reason to cry. If only we could have it so easy..to never worry about redness...and splotches..and cysts..and scars. If only. God dealt us this for some reason.... You were strong enough to take accutane, complete the course, and now you are strong enough to finish your transformation. I know that its hard, Im going through the same battle (yet you are ahead of me, I havent taken Accutane yet..But I desperately need it because I am starting to have some heinous scarring already) ....But just think.. 6 more months and your skin might look totally different.. If not, get it fixed. But keep reminding yourself that you are strong, beautiful and inspiring to alot of people.

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FrankieBGirl that was just the perfect post for me to read, I hope that it helped GO as well. You just summed the roller coaster ride that we are all going through to a T, so thanks from me.

GO (i was almost going to say don't worry but I think that's the worst thing that peopple can say to me sometimes as it means to me that they mean well but are just not understanding where I'm at so I feel alone) I too feel like you and like everyone else on this site feels when our skin is doing a backflip to muck our lives around. It is just so nice that we are able to offload our thoughts and anxieties on this site and know that you are not unnessessarily worrying, you are not to just vain and that you are not alone!!!!!

I know that red marks left from pimples can take up to a year and sometimes even more to disappear. This completely sucks but like FrankiBGirl said, give it time and then fix it if it is still a problem!! I know it must feel awful that you thought you were at the end of the road on finishing Roaccutane and now there is still a battle but just try to stretch it that little bit further, painful though it is. You are nearly there....!

I just wish we could all sit down and have a cup of tea and a big hug!

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Thanks Lucky Girl- Im glad to help anyone I can. I swear we are all living a mirror image of each other... sometimes literally.

Its a strange feeling..because Ive only suffered from acne for..I dont know, i think im at 8 months now..and my life is completely different from what it was. I used to wake up, splash my face with water..and go. Now.. I have to determine what Im going to do, so I can put my make up at a decent time..so that it still looks presentabl for the longest amount of time while Im out. Its SICK, Its a psychological roller coaster.

I honestly live my life around my skin.. and I think alot of us do that, and foolishly think we are the only ones. Thats why I love this board.. It brings back a feeling of normalcy. I wish we could have tea and a big hug, too! Damnit!

It sucks because there isnt anyone in my life who really understands what Im going through. Can you imagine having flawless skin and then BAM! Its ripped from underneath you basically overnight. Ive had a rough adjustment period and Its taking a toll on me mentally lately. I Just want to feel NORMAL. I want to look and feel normal.. Is that so much to ask?

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GO, we're all here for you. It's okay to cry sometimes. I have good days and bad days too. I remember just a couple weeks ago, you were feeling great about your skin... try to remember why you were feeling so great! I bet you look TONS better than pre-Accutane, which is awesome. You know it's only supposed to get better... so it's all about the patience. I know it's hard, I barely have the patience sometimes and I'm still taking the darn pills!

Everyone is their own worst critic. I remember a post by you a couple months ago, happy about a guy saying you were gorgeous and that Latin girls have great skin wink.gif Well if you looked so great with makeup on then, think about how much greater you must look now!! I'm sure of it.

Don't do the microdermabrasion, you don't wanna do anything you'll regret. It's sort of expensive, and I've had it done a few times in the past - honestly didn't notice much difference. Your skin will feel smoother after I guess, but to be frank, I always found it comparable to a hearty scrub-fest with St. Ives shock.gif

For red marks, give a product with hydroquinone a shot. And remember - the sun will come out tomorrow! (bet your bottom dollar that tomorooooooooowwww....) hehe! biggrin.gif

Mae

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Guest Craigems

Back to that "Aussy cant spell Aussies correctly"... okay let me give you a brief lesson.

Say "Aussy" ... then say "Aussie". Okay right, is Aussie in the dictionary? or is Aussy in the dictionary ? or is OZZY in the dictionary?

Okay we dont activily care what way its typed ... it sounds right dont it? I dunno if Americans or Canadians say Auss "y"... but i pronounce it Aussie.

Thankyou. i win. end of discussion.

I love you GO wub.gif

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Come on, GO! You’ve been so incredibly supportive and smart in your responses to everyone here. What would you say to yourself right now?

It’s been such a short period of time. Give yourself time to heal: mentally and physically. It’s okay to feel down and cry a whole bunch - - everyone has those moments. I know you are beautiful. I know it. I wish you knew it right now too.

This will get better, girl. Breath. Give yourself a big hug from everyone at Acne.Org and remember that this a journey and just because you took your last pill, doesn’t mean it’s over.

P.S. I just read down a little. I am happy you are feeling better!

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Hi guys,

Thank you very much. To those frequent and non-frequent posters, I give you thanks. I'm feeling a bit better today. I'm going to start hitting the gym to get post-accutane pent-up emotions out. Good news? I lost 8 pounds since getting off the tane. Don't ask me how or why. I even repositioned the scale around my bathroom because I thought there was some kind of atmospheric anomalie tampering with God knows what i'm rambling now. haha. Anyway, i'll try to keep as positive as I can. I really do love you guys.

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Guys,

I have very superficial scars and they bother me to no avail. All I can say is that you should take the most aggressive treatment possible--as early as possible--to get rid of acne that is causing scars. Trust me: acne sucks but acne scars are truly unbearable.

Just my two cents

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GO... Your skin will start to even out a little bit after you've been off the accutane longer. Trust me. I've noticed it myself. I've also had days like that where I've felt so hopeless.

About the weight loss... do you think you've been eating less because you've become depressed? I don't eat when I'm depressed and I lost nearly 20 lbs recently.

And kkhajavi, I'm sure GO will do all she can to treat her scars when the time comes. She just has to wait as she just finished Accutane.

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I don't know why i've dropped the weight. It almost seems like it was overnight. When I get depressed I eat a lot more than usual so if I was depressed the scale numbers would be climbing. I"m thinking maybe it has to do with my metabolism getting back to normal after the tane. I will definitely keep positive. Thanks.

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Guest Craigems

Its coz you stopped eating all that Chocolate GO... did ya run out? didnt the easter bunny bring enough? lol biggrin.gif

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Guest Craigems

WHAT lol tongue.gif i musta posted those chocolates to the wrong person then :/

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