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i went to the dermo today, armed with a list of questions to ask him.

-why am i still breaking out?

-why are my glands still swolen?

-are there topicals i can use?

-should i change my diet?

-should i go back on prednisone?

and then, when i was there, i cried. (yup frankie) i was talking about how miserable i am that it isn't working. how embarassing it is for me to be 26 with acne. and i just started weeping. i told him that i wasn't thrilled with my progress and he agreed. so he...

-put me on prednisone (20mg/day)

-gave me duac gel (1% clindamycin, 5%BP)

-told me to eat more healthful (i actually mentioned the perricone diet. i was like, "i know this is probably a bad word around here, but what do you think of the perricone diet?" he was like, "no. that guy doesn't know what he is talking about. and it sucks, cause he is board certified and everything.")

-i have to see him again in 2 weeks. to see if the pred works. if it does...AND THIS IS THE KICKER---HE WANTS TO UP MY DOSE. from 80mg to 120mg(i think). 'cause he thinks i'm not responding to it as well as he wants me to....ugh.

unrelated question for taners:

i've heard of the weird 'blackheads pushing' up on the nose thing. and i think it is happening to me...how do you get rid of them? i feel like there is a mini-plug coming out of every pore on my nose. weird. do they come out on their own eventually? or should i take them out/off with something?

thanks for your support, everyone.


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re: blackheads

yeah, i know what you mean, they're pretty gross!!! it happened to me about 2 weeks into Accutane. i read on a thread that someone used those Biore pore strips--they were helpful and not too harsh. I would proceed with caution though. I wanted to do this, but i was afraid it would rip off the entire layer of skin along with the blackheads!!

i managed to get some of the blackheads out by moisting a soft tissue and gently rubbing them off.

hope this helps...

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First of all, it sounds like you have a good derm, one that actually listens to you and intelligently answers your questions. I'm impressed- you should feel lucky.

As far as the blackheads go, I very gently exfoliated with a little baking soda or scraped (barely) with a fingernail to help get rid of the portion of the plug that was protruding. The keyword is GENTLY. I'm talking a baby touch. Even then my nose would be a little red for the entirety of the next day, so understand that going into it. I would absolutely not use biore strips, particularly at the doses you're at. I think you're right that you might actually rip some skin off with the strip. From what I remember, my blackheads were gone in a few weeks. berry

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Lex.. *huge Napoleon Dynamite Sigh*

Crying at the Derm office. Seems like a regular thing lately.

Anyway- Prednisone. Awesome. Perricone. Not so Awesome. LoL I think Diet really, honestly, has very little to do with acne. I tried different things and yet nothing has changed. I havent had ANY DAIRY in about 2 months because of Doxy... and I still got cysts... I also have been drinking lots of water and avoiding alot of sugars... Still got cysts.

120 mgs is a little scary- I agree with you for being concerned. The only thing is- I really think you will respond later on in treatment. I think your derm started you out at a pretty high dose for your body weight, which can really rile up a massive initial breakout.. However.. It will get you to your ending dosage much quicker and usually is best for complete remission of acne. So thats the bright side.

Dont forget, some people dont clear til after treatment. Im gonna pray that isnt you. But- Just dont forget that part of it because some people get so discouraged at their slow progress..and after treatment are blown away by how beautiful they look.

I sympathize with you, sweetpea- Im 21 and have acne and I look younger- so Now I REALLLLLLY look younger. Its embarassing when people think Im still in high school, and I know its because my acne... Before I had acne, people thought I was about 19... Now they think im 16. "Isnt there school today" .....FU(K I am 21 years old.

Acne sucks at all ages but having it in your 20s is just plain hard. Not many people around you have it.. whereas in high school, its more common. I struggle going to work each day because of my skin.. It takes me forever to get ready. So- trust me, I am in this with you 100% and we are going to get over it. I promise you this. You will get through, and you are going to feel as beautiful as you already are.

Please stay strong, and cry when you need it. I felt way better after my huge, embarassing crying fest... So, sometimes I think it gets out all that icky stress built up, and all the pent up sadness that you hold in all day long and it releases something in you. Take care hun, Im pullin for you- and I know you are going to look great.. Just stay with it, Dont give up!

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thanks everyone---i'm gonna try that baking soda trick...

frank: you always make me feel better. i felt better after the crying too... and actually, i could be crazy, but i feel like my skin is better today (maybe from that topical)... i honestly haven't gone out, done anything social with other people in months. its kinda nice...i'm learning alot about myself...but, it is weird. all my friends call and they are like, "um, did you fall off the earth?" i sometimes don't even call them ack, because, yeah--i DID fall of the face of the earth, onto another plantet- called accutane.

i just really want to be cleared by passover (april23) i'm gonna be around all my family, they know i am on this, and i want them to see that it is working. the worst is when you have bad skin (and you KNOW it really is bad) and people tell you they think it looks better just cause they think it is what you want to hear. so i don't want that to happen...

have a great day...i think spring has finally sprung in NYC!!!

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    I sympathize with you, sweetpea- Im 21 and have acne and I look younger- so Now I REALLLLLLY look younger. Its embarassing when people think Im still in high school, and I know its because my acne... Before I had acne, people thought I was about 19... Now they think im 16.  "Isnt there school today"  .....FU(K I am 21 years old.

  Acne sucks at all ages but having it in your 20s is just plain hard.

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Lex- Yayyyy Im glad you feel better!!!! You know, I didnt wanna say anything But after I cried, my skin looked better the next day. Maybe we scared the crap out of our pores (literally) with all the swelling of crying... Or Im crazy and theoretically an asshat...

Anyways- Oh I know!!! My mom drives me nuts. She will be like "Let me see" and Ill show her without make up.. and she will look at all the places that are obviously F'ed up beyond recognition and she'll go... "Hmm..Its not that bad" ...Not that bad!?! Try walking around like this when you were my age!!!!! Its so frusterating because its a touchy subject..and its like, you wanna know if it looks bad.. But you really DONT wanna know if it looks bad. Usually someone lets you know.. which they usually do. Idiots!

Friends. Wow- Mine are all mad at me, too. None of em have acne. None of em understand. Its difficult because I am super outgoing and love to have fun- and for the past 8 months..holy hell, HERMIT!!!! So, Yah- I totally hear you on this- it sucks, you wanna tell them whats wrong.. But you cant cuz its too embarassing. Its not like they dont know you have acne, but to say it- Thats when it becomes a little overwhelming.

UK_Guy- Awww sweetie, Im sorry! I feel for you, honestly. 20s sucks, and 30s has got to be a nightmare. Itll be resolved.. I think if a derm realizes what you have been through treatment wise, and what you are going through emotionally- you can get Accutane and end the misery.

Just hang in there as best you can, and try to forget. As people told me when I was really upset- Acne is not YOU. So Dont worry- As soon as you get to the Drs, youll get fixed up quick. Good Luck Hun!

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ya, people are starting to wonder about me too. I see people and they are like. Where have you been? I haven't seen you in such a long time, how are you doing?

I don't want to come out and tell everyone that asks me, "oh, I've just been too embarrased to leave my house because my face is exploding, no biggie" as if. you can't say that.

I used to go out too. like once every week or two with my friends. But I haven't gone out since b4 xmas now. It has gotten so bad. They prob. think I am snobbing them off. But hopefully, i will start looking better soon.

I am sure that it won't be as embarrasing to say, " I was having some problems with my skin. But now it's cool"

But we are all hanging in there, right? Clear skin is just round the corner for me I hope. starting my third month in 5 days.

One thing is for sure though..... This has been quite the journey through hell and back. Years of hoping, praying, crying, taking meds, and burning off my face with topicals are hopefully over soon. If I could be clear for atleast 2 years, that would be great, I'd go on accutane again in a minute.

Good luck to me, good luck to you, good luck to all!!!

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