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An Accutane Adventure out of the Inferno

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Hello. I will be starting Accutane either in two days or in 3 weeks(ill explain that in a bit) and i decided to make a log for many reasons. One hopefully this log will help me along the way and yall can give me encouragement and advice on what to do and what not to do. Also i want to be able to read this when my treatment is done and realize just how far i have come.

I am 17, will be turning 18 in about 5 weeks. I have had acne for about 5-6 years and i am completely fed up with it. I can't stand acne any more and what it has done to me, what it still does to me. I grew up in the middle of nowhere with just my mom and my sister. I went to a small private school untill 6th grade. So basically i have always been a shy and reserved person. It was hard enough making the adjustment to public school because of this, but soon after my acne showed up and made everything all the more difficult. Im not saying my life is terrible. I am very intelligent, nice, and other things and i have many friends. However, acne has always affected me since i've had it. I have never been that great with the ladies because of it. In fact i never even asked a girl out untill 6 months ago because i was always too shy and was sure i would be turned down because of how i look. Well that was untill i met my girlfriend, who i am constantly faling more and more madly in love with. I know she doesnt' judge me because of my acne, and she has even said i am attractive. But sometimes when im around her, especially when my acnce is pretty bad, i feel inadequete almost. She is absolutely beautiful and has very nice skin. Im not afraid of what she thinks of me, but more of what people think when they see us on a date. Lets face it, people are assholes and i know people think "what is such a beautiful girl doing with a guy that looks like that". Now admittedly i think i would be pretty good looking if it wasn't for my acne, but when you have acne thats all you can see in the mirror and you think you are ugly nomatter what. Therefore i think my girlfriend deserves for me to not only look better, but have more confidence which would come with my acne going away. Plus theres the fact that our relationship has started to get a lot more serious (not sex, as we both believe in saving that for marriage), and i feel really weird whenever our faces are close to each other b/c im afraid oil from my skin might rub onto her and crap like that. UGH I HATE THIS

Anyway, about my acne. I would say its hard to classify the severity of it. I would say that on the whole its mild, but there are maybe 2 days a month usually where im completely fine and happy with it, but unfortunately also probably 5 or so days a month where its so bad i have a hard time even going to school and facing people. THats the problem with my acne, its not constant, its always in cycles. I've tried pretty much every non-prescription thing out there, including Proactiv(which is such a scam by the way) and many prescription medicines (currently on an antibiotic and tazorac) but none of it does anything for an extended period of time. Sure it helps for about a month, but then my face adjusts and my acne goes back into its cycle. Im freaking tired of it.

Thats why i decided to get accutane even though my mom and my sister tell me i shouldn't get it. THey say the side effects are too bad, but frankly im willing to endure a few side effects if it works. Obviously i hope that Accutane will completely clear up my skin and cure it so acne never really comes back. I also hope that it will prevent any further scaring which i am afraid of since i've had acne so long and tend to have a bad habit of picking. I just hope and pray that this works because if it doesn't, nothing will and that scares me.

Anyway, i ranted for a while. THanks a bunch for any of you who actually read all of that. And now i have a few questions.

1)What products do you sugges i use. I am already going to use Cetaphil for face wash, so im talking about moisturizer, lip balm, any supplements that might help, and things of that nature.

2)any special things i should do that would help my acne improve any more. THis can include ways to wash my face, or things such as exercise or w/e it is that would help my face even more.

3) How can i best deal with the side effects. Funny thing is i am fine with the joint pains and im not worried about the possible kidney problems, but i dont want to deal with rashes and the dry lips. So how can i best combat these

Also, any advice on how to get through accutane, how to stay positive, etc. would be greatly appreciated

Oh yeah, almos forgot to tell why i might get it in two days or wait a few weeks. You see i know that there is an initial breakout usualy with accutane. I am wiling to accept this. However, i am graduating Higschool in 3 weeks and would absolutely hate for my initial breakout to come now and ruin a lot of it. So therefore i might wait untill i graduate and then start taking it when i can avoid people during the summer for a few weeks.

Thanks for any advice and support yall can give. I will post from now on, especially once i start my treatment. I will try to keep a daily post of my progress, not really sure if ill be able to get pics though. Anyways, thanks everyone! Im nervous about all of this, but mostly excited for what my life might be like in a few months.

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Hey Congrats on deciding to start accutane :dance: You wont regret it trust me... as far as what to use.. go to my log that i started and in the beginning i posted everything ill be using.. all of that i researched and are pretty much the top stuff to use. Its good you have a gf that understands and make sure you tell her what youll be going thru so she will know what to expect also... about the inital breakout.. theres really no telling when you will get it.. you may get it 3 weeks after you start and kick yourslef in the booty for not starting right away... or maybe youll get it right away.. so that something youll have to take a chance on.. well if you have anymore questions feel free to ask :D

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Oooh that was a looong introduction :D But I read all..haha ;)

So dude I just wanted to wish you good luck for your treatment. Sure there will be good but also bad times during tan. But its the right decision to take it. If you don't take it now you would probably regret it in some years. It's worth the trouble. That's how I see that.

And I know excactly what your talking about regarding this girl thing but hey you've a wonderful girlfriend by your side who will support you. That's great! You're a lucky guy. ;)

Don't give a damn what people may think about you. I'm sure you're a lovely guy. You've to do this journey for you. It's you who has to feel good in your skin. That's what's all about. ;)

And one advice I can give you. Don't squezze out pimples while you're on this drug. It can cause you unlovely scares. And don't forget to use moisturizing cream that's important. ;)

haha...I think you'll have clear skin soon. :D

If you've any questions feel free to ask. ;)

All the Best!

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Alright, so i went to my derm this morning. I've decided that i would just start tommorow instead of waiting three weeks. She said that she's going to start me on 20mg and give me a steroid to help prevent the IB, and that i shouldn't have a problem with it(i really hope she is right). I was actually kind of upset when she said she would start me out at 20mg b/c i thought that higher doses meant more success(yet worse side effects) but then she explained to me that its about reaching a total amount in the end, and that it really has nothing to do with how much you take a day. Unfortunately this means my treatment will probably last a month longer than usual, however she says she prefers this way b/c you get the same results in the long run, but you help prevent the horrible initial breakout by easing you into the medicine.

So yeah, ill take my first pill tommorow. Im very excited, but still very nervous. Even though she has promised i won't have a bad IB, im still afraid that stopping Tazorac will make me breakout a little. I guess thats b/c i've become so used to putting some sort of topical on every single night. Thats actually something that will make me just as happy about tane as the clear skin. No longer will i have to put some topical crap on my face every single night and worry about what will happen if i don't.

So yeah, ill start at 20mg tommorow, with a steroid for a few weeks to help reduce a flare up in my acne.

One thing that i thought was weird is that i asked my derm about supplements and she said that i shouldn't take them b/c there is no proof that any of them do anything helpful. She said that Vitamin E might help, but that recent research is showing that it really doesn't help at all. I was planning on taking Fish Oil pills and possibly Omega to help reduce side effects, but she claims that it won't help. ANy thoughts on this?

As you can tell, i write a lot. Ill try and make my updates short and to the point from now on, though if im feeling down you can expect a rant :D

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Hey. Congrats on starting! :) I hope everything goes smoothly for you. Don't stress out about it, I think that's the worse thing you can do. So far, I've found it best to just take it one day at a time.

I still take vitamin e. It makes me feel like I'm doing something....and it's not like it can hurt.

anyway, I look forward to hearing more about your adventure. good luck!


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K, i took my first pill today so obviously nothing yet to report. THe steroid she gave me has a really bad taste though, but hey as long as it works like its supposed to i dont care.

As for my face as i start the tane adventure, its not too bad right now. Theres only a few active sites , though there is this really nasty sore-like place under my right eye from this retarded cyst i had a few days ago. yeah, its not pretty but it seems to be healing

anyway, so off i go

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DAy 2

not much to report obviously. There are a few small pimples coming up, but nothing that bad yet. Hopefully that steroid my derm gave me will work and prevent my IB. My skin already feels kind of dry, which is strange. I didn't think it would work so quickly. Of course it was al ittle dry before hand...

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Hey congrats on starting on accutane. I actually started 7 days ago and similar to your experience, my derm wanted to start me off slowly to so I am on 20mg right now and will eventually get to 80mg.

I actually got an IB so I dont know if doing this exactly prevented a breakout, but maybe a 40mg to 80mg start might have really broken me out.

Also, according to my eye doctor, fish oil helps with dryness of the eyes among other things which is good because accutane tends to give you real dry eyes. Im still up in the air about vitamin E.

Well best of luck.

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DownSouth, looks like you and I will be "Accutane Buddies" as we started on the same day. Like you and windy, my derm has started me on a lower dose to help avoid the IB. I'm on 10mg a day and will move up to 60mg after I finish this round of pills. I've really not noticed a difference one way or the other. I figure it's just too soon.

As far as supplements, I'm not really planning on taking anything. I'm just going to let the 'tane do it's thing and treat the side effects as best I can. I figure I need to figure out what works for me and what doesn't. I believe everyone is different and everyone is going to react differently to the treatment. So what may work for one person, may not work for another.

At any rate, we should keep in touch. We can compare notes about progress and such. ;) Good luck on your journey, be strong and most importantly, hang in there!

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K sorry i haven't replied for a few days but my life has been awfully hectic this last week.

anyway, to the point

Day 7

Yay, one week down, too many to go. I honestly haven't really seen that much of a difference yet. My acne overall has been doing a little better i suppose, but i dont think thats b/c of the medicine yet. I've really just been having a few small pimples every day, not really any bad spots. Of course i noticed a few hours ago that a cyst has begun to show up on left upper cheek, which makes me sad b/c i haven't a cyst for two weeks or so, but oh well. Hopefully it will go away soon

HAven't had any side effects really, my skin isn't dry or anything(though i have been moisturizing two times a day just so it wont get dry), however over the past few days my skin has gotten REALLy oily, which i hate b/c it looks like i washed my face in grease or something. hopefully this will go away very soon as it can be almost as annoying as the acne itself(my skin has always been very oily however, which is something im definitely looking forward to this medicine getting rid of)

oh and something i failed to mention earlier is that im actually taking the generic Amnesteen as its $10 with my insurance as compared to the $400 accutane would be, but i hope that doesn't really make a difference

Anyways, ill try and post more regularly from now on

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Day 10

so much for no Initial breakout....like i said my skin got really oily and now its going crazy. I have been WAY more whiteheads than i usually do and its really distressing. I mean i guess im being optimistic and thinking that hey, this might be the last bad breakout i ever have. thats exciting to think about, but it doesn't really make this any easier. Hopefullly it will calm down soon before i graduate highschool next week. If not...oh well. at least the summers almost here and i can avoid people if need be.

Ugh, im not in such a good mood today, but oh well. I know things will get better, its just hard to wait.

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Yeah, I'm having a bit of an IB as well. It's really nothing terrible, but I've noticed that I'm getting more cysts and whiteheads in some very interesting places (on my ears, for example). I have a feeling it'll be worse when I move up to my actual dose next month.

Hang in there! It's only temporary.

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yea, todays not so different from yesterday. though i think my skin might be getting a little less oily (*crosses fingers) but i guess ill just have to wait and see. hopefully this breakout will end soon b/c my life has been crazy and i've been kind of grumpy lately and this is the last thing i need right now

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*lol* If you ask anyone that knows me, they'll tell you that I'm always grumpy. However, I've been in a better mood lately. Maybe it's the Accutane. :think:

I hope things get better for you.

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I hope things get better for you!! And be sure to watch those moody outbursts since they could be indicative of the "emotion" side effects!

But HOORAY for the IB! I'm sorry you're getting it but that means fewer zits in the future! That is a WONDERFUL thing! You are on your way to clear! :dance: keep up the great work!

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