I wrote a review for dianette on this site a long time ago and feel compelled to write another because I think it might be helpful for some people if I shared my mixed experience of it.
Firstly, I've suffered with acne since I was about 12. It's ranged from mild to severe and I've tried almost every treatment you can think of to try to remedy it bar accutane. The only thing that has worked long term has been the pill. The only types of pill that have worked have been dianette and (to a lesser degree) Yasmin.
I've been on dianette three times previously. The first time I didn't notice a huge amount of side effects but it got rid of the acne very effectively. The second and third times were incredibly difficult for the first four or five months. I grew very very depressed, very angry, my libido plummeted, and I became very bloated. Perhaps worst of all though, my skin experienced horrendous initial breakouts, much much worse than it had been before I went on the pill. And it's that side effect in particular that made me very wary of trying dianette again after I had a break from it even though it cleared up my skin beautifully.
About two years ago I decided that I wanted to come off the pill altogether. I had been on Yasmin, my skin was very clear and I thought that maybe if I came off it, it would stay clear. Within about a month though my face was breaking out, and the acne got very bad again. My period also stopped for a few months and a scan revealed that I had PCOS. I was recommended going back on the pill to deal with the side effects of the condition (acne, thinning hair, and irregular periods) but I was so worried about that awful initial few months that I couldn't face it.
I perserved for another year or so, and my skin just kept getting worse and my confidence was being destroyed by it. I didn't want to leave my house. At work I couldn't look anyone in the eye. It was horrible. So in the end I caved - I just thought, whatever side effect I have to deal with nothing can be worse than feeling like this every day.
And the strangest thing was - no initial breakout. My skin just cleared up, very quickly. I should say at this point that I coupled taking it for the first three weeks with oral antibiotics, which I think may have really helped, and used topical antibiotics on my face at night. But seriously, the horrible, painful breakout I'd been so afraid of didn't materialise and two months in, my skin is almost completely clear.
I'm sorry for the very long post but I really wanted to share it with anyone who might be considering going back on dianette or trying it for the first time but feeling worried about the side effects. I'm not sure why they haven't effected me this time around but I think it's worth saying. And if you're struggling just give it a go, because life really is too short.