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Hey gang. Well, I've been on quite the prescription drug regimen, and it wasn't working. My wedding is in less than three months and I am getting desperate, so I went to the dermo today. She told me my only option for clear skin by my wedding is Accutane. I really really really don't want to use it, but I also really really really want clear skin on my wedding day. The worst part was realizing that my acne is cystic and severe. Ugh. I've been in denial for a few months, it seems. I also have to go in every couple of weeks to get a chemical peel. Has anyone else tried this and gotten good results?

She changed me to a new regimen for the next 30 days during the waiting period:

AM: Doxy, a low-dose steroid (can't remember the name), and Finacea (I have no idea what this is--could someone help me out?)

PM: Tazorac and Yasmin BCP

I'm starting Accutane in one month, I guess. I really need some encouragement. I also need some reassurance that I may not have an initial breakout. I'm just getting over the IB from Retin-A, and I'll be starting Tazorac tonight, but I won't be able to deal with another IB from Accutane, especially with my wedding less than 2 months away when I start it.

What's the word?

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Spring,

Your derm is a professional and has the definite advantage of having seen you in real life & knowing your treatment history. Giving and accepting advice over the internet is risky business anyway. Also, I am not a doctor--I just play one online.

All that said, if my daughter was getting married on July 1, there's no way in the world I'd let her start Accutane two months before the wedding. Although your derm is doing her utmost, trying to avoid an initial flare with the antibiotics and steroids and the Tazorac, I don't think there's any way she can tell how your body will react to the drug/how quickly you will clear. On the plus side, the Yasmin should help-- how long have you been on it? But chemical peels on top of the Tazorac? Every couple of weeks? Yikes. She must think your skin can take a lot of punishment.

A question: since time is of essence, what other antibiotics have you tried execpt doxycycline? Many people here/on other boards have cleared up fast on Bactrim. The dermatologist who visited these boards last year (Dermpro) said it was his favourite, the big gun before Accutane. Based on his suggestion, I asked for Bactrim when my kid was starting college last fall & we were running out of time to deal with a pretty bad flare. Of all the stuff/antibiotics we've tried, Bactrim worked by far the fastes and best: it stopped all the cystic acne in its tracks in a matter of a month or so. My kid was on Bactrim plus Spiro for a few weeks, stopped taking Bactrim and started Yasmin at Xmas and is still so clear and oil-free that I hesitate to talk about it for fear of jinxing the results... :-)

Good luck whatever you decide!

C.

P.S. I was quite concerned about Bactrim's bad reputation so I asked for Bactrim and NOT the Bactrim DS (Double Strength). It's easier to find as a generic.

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Spring,

-1- most people who are on Accutane have a reddish face. i'm not sure what causes this inflammation, but this is what happens. that, i guess, could be covered up with make-up, but it's nevertheless going to be a cosmetic concern.

-2- can i ask when you started breaking out so heavily? was it only very recently or has your skin been bad for a while?

-3- if i were you, i would not go on Accutane esp. if you're in a major hurry just to be clear by a certain date. you'd be better off with a couple sessions of photodynamic therapy and some Tazorac and maybe changing your diet.

Spring -

Two more things:

-1- Just saw you're on .05% Tazorac -- I would change this to .1% and apply it for 15-20 minutes each night and then rinse off.

-2- Also, I just realized you're not starting it until May 15. There is no way Accutane is going to clear your skin in 6 weeks. It could cause it to flare up during that time. I would consider the other options.

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I would FOLLOW THE DERMS ADVICE. They are doctors. We aren't.

Why just worry about being clear for the wedding? Accutane is probably your best bet at clearing you for good without the permanent scarring acne can leave.

"Well, I've been on quite the prescription drug regimen, and it wasn't working"

You said it wasn't working. You're not clear now. The stuff your on isn't helping. If you don't go on Accutane, you can stick with the same stuff your using plus whatever she changed you to, and you probably won't be clear ever... or by your wedding anyways... So why not go ahead and take the Accutane, something that is more likely than anything to clear you for good, even if it's not by your wedding.

Either way, you probably won't be clear by the wedding. One of them is going to clear you in the long run... and that's accutane. Why wait?

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You said it wasn't working. You're not clear now. The stuff your on isn't helping. If you don't go on Accutane, you can stick with the same stuff your using plus whatever she changed you to, and you probably won't be clear ever... or by your wedding anyways... So why not go ahead and take the Accutane, something that is more likely than anything to clear you for good, even if it's not by your wedding.

Either way, you probably won't be clear by the wedding. One of them is going to clear you in the long run... and that's accutane. Why wait?

Perfectly said. If I had known the depth of the results, I would have taken it YEARS ago. It is incredible. Trust your derm!

P.S. Accutane isn't as scary as most people make it out to be. check out the accutane logs section (see BlackTaxi2D, AmberLynn, NoIDontHaveTheChickenPox, Lara, and so many others.... we have all had fantastic results) and you'll see that it is really a pretty awesome drug!

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Take Accutane! I've been having troublesome skin since being a teeanager and I'm now 27. I never had anything other than mild acne, sometimes it would get become moderate but what I also had problems with was very oily skin to the point I would look like a greaseball at the end of the day. I've been on Accutane for a few days shy of a month and I'm really loving it so far. My complexion has begun to clear, not just clearing of my pimples, but the actual complexion itself just looks clear, smooth and radiant. Plus, my face looks super matte the entire day! Woo hoo! I put make-up on yesterday morning around 10 am, and took it off, around 9:30 at night and my face looked like I just applied make-up to it minutes ago. Actually, I was staring at my face in the mirror last night before I showered just being happy and thankful that I'm seeing a lot of nice improvements in both my skin and my oiliness problem. I used to hide when people came over, my parent's friends and my brother's friends as well, because I was embarassed by how I looked at the end of the day. I feel much more confident about my appearance now... I haven't felt this way in a *long* time just at night time really, when everything is dark and dim. I wouldn't care if we had company over late anymore.

I can understand your concern over the initial breakouts though during your wedding time. I never really had an initial breakout other than a few pimples. Nothing major. I know you wouldn't want to gamble with your skin so close to your wedding, but as for myself I'm almost done with my first month and my skin looks better. The only thing I would advise you to do is to moisturise both your lips and your skin several times a day so they don't crack and peel. I wish I would've went on this stuff sooner.

By the way, isn't Fenetia *spelling??* used to help take acne scars away?

But to shine some light on your condition, I know of three people that went on accutane and had wonderful success stories... one of them is a super great friend of mine. He had severe cystc acne up until the time he was a very young adult. He took it for one course and his skin is beautifully clear. People would never know he dealt with acne. He's 30 now so he's been acne free for about 10 years. Another accutane user I know is my cousin. Unfortunately he had severe cystic acne all over his face, neck, chest and back area. He went on Accutane for one course and his skin is beautifully clear now. I know a young woman, around 27 years old that went on Accutane and her skin is beautiful. A lot of happy success stories because of this drug.

In the long run, listen to your derm. If you're afraid of the initial breakouts before or during the time you're getting married, maybe you should take Accutane afterwards. About the flushing part, I'm a little red but it's not a big deal for me. Applying either make-up or some kind of emu and aloe cream will help take the redness away.

Good luck! :):) and congratulations on your wedding!!!! Horray for you! ::clap::

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Thanks for all the help, guys! You really are the best.

Aside from the whole birth defects/mental illness side effects thing, what worries me the most about Accutane is what most of you pinpointed, which is the initial breakout. I've been on Retin-A for 6 full weeks and was just getting over the IB I had from that, and now the dermo switched me to Tazorac .05%. Do y'all think that these two things will lessen my chances of an IB on Accutane? The dermo also said that I can visit her a few days before the wedding and get anything that's popped up because of a potential IB injected with cortisone, which should make it disappear by the wedding. BUT, she also said that IBs on Accutane aren't as common as we all think--out of hundreds of her patients who go on Accutane a year, she said only 5 or so will have IBs. I know it's a gamble and GOD my face definitely hasn't been erring on my lucky side, but she is the professional, and she genuinely cares about getting me clearER (not necessarily clear) by July 1.

The chemical peels and the Finacea are to help with potential scarring. Retin-A wrecked havoc on my face, and she's concerned that, although most of the active stuff will be gone by my wedding, I will be left with purple marks and scars.

For whoever asked, I just now got acne for the very first time in my life. Cystic acne runs in my family, and it's just very bad luck that it started to flare up for me about the same time I got engaged, this past November. I've always had beautifully clear skin, which makes this even harder--I mean, if I got married last year, I would have had beautiful skin on my wedding day. It's all just the worst timing possible.

Anyway, thank you for the encouragement! I've decided I will go with the current regimen like the doctor prescribed and see where I'm at in a month. If I'm at a place where I'm decently happy with my skin, I may wait until after the wedding to start Accutane. If I'm not, well, I won't have much to lose.

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Spring~This is just my two cents...I went on Accutane twice and had very bad cystic breakouts both times. This drug is awesome if you have several months to spend with it, taking extra great care of yourself. But during this (I'm sure) stressful time before your wedding, I'd say it's not the best time. Also, like you, I had a bad breakout that came out of no where a few months ago. Everyone said "Go on Accutane again." But I refused because I'm afraid of what a 3rd round could do to my body (sorry, but doctors do not know everything and I don't believe that it's 100% safe). Anyway, I did not go on accutane again. I chose to do Dan's Clear Skin Regimen, and now I am free of active pimples after 90 days. I had a major improvement within the first two months. Check out my gallery album.

p.s. I'm also taking Minocyclen. Are you taking any internal meds?

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I've been on Retin-A for 6 full weeks and was just getting over the IB I had from that, and now the dermo switched me to Tazorac .05%. Do y'all think that these two things will lessen my chances of an IB on Accutane?

Absolutely. Generally, the IB from Accutane is purging stuff that's been brewing in the pores. If it's already purged the IB is less likely to happen at all, or it does it won't be too severe. Taking a course of antibiotics in the months leading up to the start of a course can also help by reducing existing inflammation.

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I've been on Retin-A for 6 full weeks and was just getting over the IB I had from that, and now the dermo switched me to Tazorac .05%. Do y'all think that these two things will lessen my chances of an IB on Accutane?

Absolutely. Generally, the IB from Accutane is purging stuff that's been brewing in the pores. If it's already purged the IB is less likely to happen at all, or it does it won't be too severe. Taking a course of antibiotics in the months leading up to the start of a course can also help by reducing existing inflammation.

I second this. I used Retin-A Micro right up to the very first day that I popped my first pill of 'tane, and ended up having a fairly mild IB. And the IB happened in places where I wasn't prone to breakouts, which was nice, since they usually occurred in highly visible areas of my face. Plus, just having ZERO oil improves the appearance of things tremendously, even existing acne, since you can cover it more effectively. I didn't take any antibiotics during my course, so perhaps my IB could have been even smaller, I don't really know. HOwever, if your pores are already cleared out, the chances of your IB being minor are pretty good. All in all, my IB was totally over and done with w/in the first month and a half. There is a possibility that you could be clear by July.

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I don't want to be negative, but I have to say that I was on Retin-A right up until I took Accutane the first time, as well. I still had a bad/cystic initial breakout. Everyone is different... I find it interesting that you just broke out for the first time in November. This would lead me to believe that you could control your acne with other things, short of Accutane. But it's really your choice. I'm not knocking Accutane, because many people have seen great results. Plus, your doctor is recommending it, so it's gotta be called for, right? Just seems like a risk right before your wedding.

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Well, you could take Accutane and I'm sure the results will be amazing! HOWEVER, if you see my pictures at the accutane logs section, you will see what COULD happen! And do you want your mouth to look like that on your wedding? I mean, it looks disgusting! And in real life it's even much worse then on the pictures!

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My wedding is coming up in 2 months so I can relate. We all want perfect flawless skin on our wedding day.

Now, as for taking accutane, have you read the accutane logs and see how most people are doing around the 2 months mark?

I've been on Yasmin/Tazorac treatment (I got off doxy after it made me really sick in the stomach) for 3 months now and I've been without any active pimples for about 6 weeks. The red marks are all gone too.

Yasmin takes awhile to kick in so you don't know if your current combination of Rx is enough to control your acne.

Whatever you decide to do, I'm sure you'll have a beautiful wedding day. :angel:

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I took accutane 7 months ago and after 2 months my face looked horrendous. I had the biggest and most disgusting cysts. One day, I think it was like around day 35, I went to sleep almost clear and woke up with 7 new big cysts. I'm not kidding. That was my worst breakout. I was so upset and depressed that day. I'm not a doctor but by personal experience and by seeing other people's accutane logs, I would say your chances of looking pretty aweful are rather high. Sorry to disappoint you.

Most accutane users get better by the third month. My skin looks great now days, but I went through hell (I'm glad I took accutane)

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You will probably see some pretty quick improvement with accutane but the side effects could leave your face looking red, scaley, blistered, cracked etc. If you decide to go on accutane you should stop using any topical treatments that could cause any irritation or dryness...just use a gentle cleanser and moisturizer and tons of lip balm etc.

If you decide not to try accutane, some people get a lot of quick relief from acne by tanning. This would only be a temporary solution however, and can make matters worse later if kept up for too long.

For me, the treatment that gave me the fastest results (and I've been on accutane twice) was Sulfacet-R lotion (contains sodium sufacetamide and sufur).

Good Luck!

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Springmore...we are all different. You read my log and know where i stand on this. I too, was on tazorac and having two peels a month. My last peel was the day that I took my first pill. I have had great results and am on day 51. I suffer of cystic acne. Maybe not as severe as some but at any given time I would have on the average of 4 golf balls on my face. My IB was not all that bad but maybe it is because I was on Minocyclin, tazorac, clindamycin, and bp up to the day I started Accutane. Yeah that sounds brutal to be on all that at once but I was, for months even, and it did nothing. Here I am not even two months on tane and the improvement is drastic. I think alot also has to do with the dosage. I am 135 pounds and my derm gave me 80mgs a day from day 1. If you do the math it is too high a dose for my weight but even with the numbers not agreeing, it has been perfect for me. FYI, one thing you can be sure of is that you will be very dry by you're wedding. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize from the very beginning and also you might want to buy bare escentuals mineral makeup, it is great while on this stuff.

Good Luck honey and Congrats on you're wedding!!

Angela

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Springmore...we are all different. You read my log and know where i stand on this. I too, was on tazorac and having two peels a month. My last peel was the day that I took my first pill. I have had great results and am on day 51. I suffer of cystic acne. Maybe not as severe as some but at any given time I would have on the average of 4 golf balls on my face. My IB was not all that bad but maybe it is because I was on Minocyclin, tazorac, clindamycin, and bp up to the day I started Accutane. Yeah that sounds brutal to be on all that at once but I was, for months even, and it did nothing. Here I am not even two months on tane and the improvement is drastic. I think alot also has to do with the dosage. I am 135 pounds and my derm gave me 80mgs a day from day 1. If you do the math it is too high a dose for my weight but even with the numbers not agreeing, it has been perfect for me. FYI, one thing you can be sure of is that you will be very dry by you're wedding. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize from the very beginning and also you might want to buy bare escentuals mineral makeup, it is great while on this stuff.

Good Luck honey and Congrats on you're wedding!!

Angela

I took accutane 7 years ago and I guess they didn't know how dangerous it was (or my doctor was an idiot) and they put me on 80 mg a day and I was 105 pounds! It just occured to me how crazy that is after reading your weight and dosage. I had terrible side effects (intestinal) that lasted 2 years, but the relief froma acne only lasted 6 months.

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