I am thinking of requesting this on my next dermo visit but not sure- wondering about your results.
I have not but a friend did. She raved about it and was thrilled with the results
I hope you don't mind me chiming in. I never had taken this, but I know this is a heavy gun for acne treatment. Dryness will happen on the face and body and watch out for depression. I read on the net one lady said this caused her son suicidal. Not want to scare you. Maybe her son already had depression before taken Accutane. Most people had good results with this.
I tried everything before using accutane and I have not had one pimple since completing accutane about 5 years ago.
GTNM- Hi! tell me, what about blackheads or skin oiliness? Did it get rid of that as well as the pimples? Was your acne hormonal in nature- worse on a monthly cycle? Was your skin getting worse with age instead of better? Have you had lingering dryness issues?
You have to take birth control pills if you are a woman before any doctor will prescribe accutane because it causes awful birth defects. However, this stuff was wonderful for my daughter. We had tried everything, and this stuff did not dry out her skin at all as it has for some people. Her skin is absolutely beautiful now. She took it for about 6 months under the doctor's supervision. She started out at the lowest dose and they graddually increased it. I highly recommend it. It is expensive, but she was spending so much of her time and money on other solutions that did not work that we decided it was well worth it. Anyone would willing pay that for a beautiful complexion.
Birth control pills alone (like Yasmin or Diane-35) can clear the skin. Maybe can try this before Accutane? Diane-35 is not in US yet. Down side of the pills is weight gain on some people.
Karen ~ Did you read the thread about Accutane over at the Kitchen Table Forum?
Have you tried any natural remedies yet? My DD takes Pantothenic Acid (a B vitamin) although not in the recommended doses and it helps her quite a bit. See the link below for LOTS of information from people who are trying it. I did try it myself for adult acne, but didn't have the results I was looking for. I started taking fish oil capsules for headaches and my acne mysteriously disappeared. I still take fish oil daily ~ although in some people it can cause acne.
I'd use the Accutane only if nothing else worked for me. JMO
Here is a link that might be useful: Pantothenic Acid acne
Lydia- Yes, I did read the post at the KT. I am going to check with the dermo about insurance coverage issues on this.
I have taken everything under the sun from age 17 to now- age 41. The pantothenic acid, bluntly, gave me the runs! And it did not seem to help my complexion at all. After becoming "immune" to my third antiobiotic, I gave up and went completely off all meds last year and focused on my skin care products. My skin is no worse and no better than it was on all those meds. I truly have nothing else left to try at this point. Birth control pills & pregnancy are not an issue so I have no problems from that standpoint.
I have already accumulated years of permanent damage that I will never be able to get rid of. I just can't figure out why my last dermo did not discuss this option with me, even after treating me for several years.
Karen ~ have you tried the fish oil capsules? I take 4000 mg. each morning (Sundown brand). I have found a few other people that claim it helped their acne also. I saw excellent results within a month. You could give it a trial ~ it's cheap and if nothing else, it's good for the heart!
(I'm in my 40's too and have suffered since my teens also, with a brief clearing in my 20's, only to have it return upon giving birth at age 29.)
HI, I did not have a lot of oiliness in my skin my acne was a monthly cystic type- like one or two very deep breakouts that I could not get to go away with out going to the dermatologist for monthly injections (steroid? can not remember) that would then cause an divet like indentation in my face that would take several months to return to normal.
Taking accutane was not a fun experience for me (the cost was covered by my insurance many hundreds of dollars each month) My lips and nose were extrememely dry and uncomfortable... but cleocin t, renova, bc pills, tetracycalin, and a host of other acne drugs did not work for me and I did not want to go into my late thirties still breaking out.
I have had no lingering dryness issues.
My son took accutane when he was 16, his face was very bad.
The first month went fine, dryness but overall felt good. The dermatologist increased the dose and my son had an adverse reaction, he got all achy all over, sort of like fever ache in the bones, it lasted a few days, he went down to a normal dose and continued for a few months with good results.
You are supposed to have a test after some time to check the enzymes in your liver, it's important to do that.
I have noticed that more and more teens are turning to Accutane but it's not a drug to be taken casually, the dryness is terrible while you are on it, I used to set up a humidifier in my son's room every day. In a lot of cases of bad acne, it's a miracle drug.....nothing else will cure acne permanently like accutane. My brother took it at 23.
Have you tried new Retin-A micro? Ask your derm about this.
I've taken Accutane twice. Once in my teens the other in my 20's.
During the first round I had dry lips and an achy back. My skin improved, but not a whole lot.
The second time my lips were worse, my nose would bleed, my back ached, and my skin on my hands developed a rash from being to dry. And finally my cholestrol (which was 154 before treatment) shot up about 120pts. They put me on a low fat diet and the cholestrol went down to 147 (i also lost 5 pounds). But my oilness went away completely and I did not break out at all. I was off Accutane for 2 months and my skin looked just as bad as it did before.
I've tried everything out there and have had acne for 13 years. I've given up on the thought of having nice skin. I think I'm just going to be ugly for the rest of my life.
It's what's on the inside that truly counts, even if it doesn't always feel that way. Trust me, I have those days too.
(((cometfern))) I know how you feel. I can't count the number of times I have backed out on activities because I was ashamed of how my face looked, especially outdoor and summer activities. You can cover every part of your body, but your face is always out there!
Kris- I have tried several different strengths and brands of Retin-A gels and creams, but not that particular one. I got a lot of skin irritation from it, even the lighter dosages.
Lydia- Yes, I have tried fish oil, niacinamide, tea tree, vitamin C, and the whole gamut of "natural" solutions, with no success.
I am disappointed because I tried to get an appointment with a new dermo- a female- thinking I would get someone who understood a pre-menopausal woman's issues. Unfortunately, she is not accepting any more new patients.
I am not happy with my last dermo and really do not want to return to him.
The new Retin-A micro is not as irritating as the regular one. There is a topical Accutane called Tazorac, I don't know if this has same bad side effects.
What are you washing your face with? For years I was wondering why I would get breakouts and then realized it's because of tallow, the ingredient in soap. Or harsh chemicals with alcohol as the main ingredient. These things are marketed to be acne treaters but 9 times out of 10 make it worse. Now my face has gotten a lot clearer with the exception of a zit or two because I found something without tallow (Oil of Olay face wash). At one point it was so bad someone asked me if I got punched...I glared and said "No! It's a zit!"
Accutane sounds kind of scary to me, although many have said it works. Although I'm not sure I'd want to put the rest of my body through that just for my face. But I can see where this condition would be extremely frustrating, especially after you've been dealing with it for most of your adult life. Good luck to you!
Phyl- I wash my face with Olay sensitive skin or regular face wash, and add a pinch of baking soda every other day to exfoliate. I switched all of my skin care & makeup products a year ago after buying Paula B.'s book, and only use what she recommends. I really like the Olay! I tried Cetaphil but it didn't do a good job getting my foundation completely off. I follow with Neutrogena alcohol-free or Sea Breeze alcohol-free toner. For extra oiliness I use the M.O.M. mask.
I would watch out for moisturizer, foundation or sunscreen that stays on the face all day/night. The longer the stuff on the face, they're more suspectible for causing breakouts.
You know, you guys are kinda lucky that you have these discussions about what you wanna take.
Because of the way our health service works, you would only be allowed to take something if your GP prescribed it for you. Since we don't pay, there is not the same incentive for companies to 'sell' their products to us Brits.
One thing I've noticed the various times I've been in the US are the number of adverts in magazines for various drugs etc. That just doesn't even happen here. I did not even know what Accutane was until I looked it up on the internet after reading this thread.
Not helpful I know Karen, but I just find it interesting how that's another 'choice' you guys have to make, whereas if I went to my Drs with bad acne, we would just try lotsa things until something worked, regardless of the the cost etc.
British people pay a flat rate for a prescription item, no matter how much it costs. If you're under 19, over 60 or on a low income, you pay nothing at all...
Some professionals like to keep their patients coming back over and over again as a steady income to their practice. I would wonder if that is true of your ex dermo. Accutane was a series of appointments over 6 months for my daughter. That's it. I have seen the same thing with some doctors treating patients with ulcers. They do the same old thing that does not work instead of ever mentioning the new treatment to get rid of them.
I know this thread was started months ago and may no longer be relevant for the OP, but I wanted to share my experience for others who will probably continue reading it.
I always had normal acne as a teenager and went to the dermatologist monthly for treatment. After I started college, my face cleared up beautifully for a couple of years and then ... very suddenly, I developed the most horrendous case of cystic acne. Cystic acne is not like regular pimples. It has absolutely nothing to do with anything you do or don't put on your face, topical products, washing, oily skin, etc. It is large, painful cysts deep under the skin and is very damaging and there is little you can do about it. I assume mine was caused by hormone changes, but I don't know. I do know it is an internal problem, hormonal, chemical or whatever.
Anyway, I took Accutane for around nine months to get rid of it and I only wish I had taken it sooner because I have scarring on my cheeks now from the cysts I had there for several months before I got on Accutane.
The big thing with it is that you absolutely can not get pregnant while you're on it. I had to show proof of a negative pregnancy test before starting it, and they were really supposed to test me monthly while I was taking it. I also had to take birth control pills for a month before I could start Accutane (which I was already on anyway) and throughout the treatment, plus I had to sign something to show I understood that I should not get pregnant, would probably have to get an abortion if I did, and that I would not hold the doctor, pharmacist, etc. responsible.
That aside, there were some troubling side effects. I had to use special body lotion almost every day and use lip balm throughout the day because of the drying effects. Forget about tanning while you're on it. (It made my oily hair turn normal.) Also I had joint stiffness and arthritis-like symptoms throughout the time I used it.
OK, all that said, it is a testament to the product that even with these side effects, I still consider Accutane to be a miracle drug and I am just thankful for its existence.
Accutane can sound a little scary, and it probably seems to many like it is not worth bothering with just to clear up a few pimples. And it isn't. It would be way too drastic for someone with everyday-pimple type acne, but cystic acne is very different and should not even be compared to regular acne. I can't imagine the damage I would eventually have had to both my skin and to my psyche if it were not for Accutane. It saved me and I don't think there is anything else that could have.
For years after I took Accutane, my skin was flawless (except for the scars I already had). Now, around six years later, I have maybe one little pimple every couple of months and never anything severe.
Edie, maybe we'll get this thread going again. My daughter took Acutane when she was 18(now is 26)for cystic acne. It was the ONLY treatment that helped. She did get a little worse, only for a few days, before she started to see the clearing. She felt dry and somewhat irritated for a while, but that subsided, too. It was miraculous. She has had beautiful skin ever since, except for a rare little pimple which can be treated with OTC meds. No more cysts! When first given the option of taking the Acutane treatments, she was told she would have to go on birth control pills first, and she didn't want to do that. A couple of months later, the dermotologist told her that was no longer required as long as she signed a release acknowledging the risks. This was in 1995. I, myself, have had the non-cystic acne as a teenager and to a lesser extent in my "old age", having terribly oily skin. I have used Tazorac, the topical Acutane, when necessary with great results. It will dry up a pimple practically overnight. It does dry and peel the area to zap the pimple, but it really works. It can be prescribed in a strength to fit skin sensitivity. One question I have for anyone out there: Am I the only post-menopausal woman alive who STILL has oily skin? I've always been told it would get dry once I became middle-aged. I'm 54 now, and still waiting. Anyone else with this problem?
Nope, BITY. You're not the only one. I'm 62 and still spend my day blotting off excess oil. My nose starts to glow before I even get out the door in the morning. I've found this thread very interesting because I belong to a generation that didn't treat acne medically. We were told to avoid chocolate and eventually it would go away. Sure. Sometime in my 50s I developed acne rosacea. After I realized that I was scarring I did seek help. The doctor put me on Minocin which worked like a charm. I've been taking it for years now. It's also used to treat high blood pressure so I guess I'm benefitting from that as well.
Teri, I'm sure I'll still be oily no matter what age I'll be. I haven't had rosacea, but I have a cousin my age who developed it just within the past couple of years. She takes daily meds for it, too. My biggest problem besides the shine and finding a stay-put makeup is the pores. They will fill with excess oil practically overnight, and of course look darker as the day goes on. I've used scrubs, masks, you-name-it, and the battle continues. My diet makes no difference. I, too, remember the days of no chocolate. I went about 3 years as a teenager without tasting it. Women with dry skin have told me I'm lucky, because I have no wrinkles, but I'm not so sure. Have you found anything really great for oil control?
BITY (I like the nickname!)
The acutane turned my daughter's oily skin and scalp normal. She used to wash her hair twice a day if she had a date in the evening. No more twice a days.
Well since my original post, our company has changed health benefits so I have neither been to the dermo nor tried accutane. I do think he was stringing me along as a "life-long customer".
Now I have to go to a regular doc and get a referral to a new dermo if I want treatment. Thankfully I have been doing pretty well off medications, since switching my make-up & products. I'm now using the Alpha-Hydrox cleanser which is working better than the Olay. I'm also using Persagel, a 10% benzoyl peroxide, to help fight extra oil & blemishes from the summer heat. Works great but bleaches my pillowcases, lol!
BITY, I use a different foundation to combat summer oil than I use in the winter...Cover Girl's Fresh Look or Revlon's oil-free Colorstay light. In the winter I like Revlon's New Complexion (oil-free). Then I use blotting tissues for absorbing oil without adding powder to my face.
Some people with super oily skin recommend a very light film of M.O.M. applied with a cotton pad. Let dry then apply foundation as normal. The M.O.M. will absorb extra oil and keep the shine at bay. Never tried it, but I do love M.O.M. masks for excess oil.
Karen, glad you found a course of treatment that works for you !
What is M.O.M. ?
Good old milk of magnesia....dirt cheap, fragrance-free, non-irritating, absorbs oil like a champ, and has some disinfectant properties. Best mask I've ever tried for oily skin! (Most of the other masks I've tried for oily skin irritated & gave me a rash...even the Queen Helene mask that everyone raved so much about.)
Milk of Magnesia!!! Whooda thunk it!!! I have to try this. It doesn't leave a whitish film?
Yes, which doesn't matter for a mask.
But I heard the trick for under make-up is to apply it very thinly, like you would foundation, using a damp cotton pad, and let it dry. Then the foundation supposedly covers it completely.
Since it is ph balanced it is very gentle- it will not cause breakouts or clogged pores.
This thread is pretty old but I thought that I'd throw in my two cents anyway.
I'm a woman in my early 50s who has rosacea. I'd been on oral and topical antibiotics and it was getting worse and worse. I joined a yahoo list and found out about a remedy that helped me immensely. I'm mentioning it here because my problem also had components of acne and oily skin.
The product is called rosacea ltd. If anyone wants, I'll post the website. (I have no financial interest in the company). Basically it is a disc that is lightly rubbed over the face after washing it. The main ingredient is salt from what I recall. It is very important to drink adequate amounts of water while using it.
The product is guaranteed to work or your money back. They are very good at giving folks back their money when the treatment is unsuccessful so there is no real risk. It costs about $90 for two disks that last about three months.
When I'd been on it for a while, and went to the doctor's for a checkup, he could not believe how much better my skin looked. He wrote down the info and give it to other patients. He told me at a later date that they'd been helped also. Perhaps someone here could benefit from its use.
cocooner, your treatment seems to be a mild dermabrasion; glad it's working for you. Do they recommend some kind of cream to use afterwards....
They suggest the use of jojoba oil. When I tried to use it, it didn't agree with my face.
Here is their website address - www.rosacea-ltd.com. I see that they are now marketing to the folks who have acne - www.acne-ltd.com.
I hope that if you try it, that the treatment is successful.