Well, my son started accutane today. After trying absolutely everything, or at least it feels that way, accutane seemed like the only viable option left. After speaking to many other mothers who also had to make this decision, there were more positive stories, in fact the only negative ones were on the web. Accutane has given my son hope. He knows it is not a quick fix, but with day one behind him, he (me too) looks forward to great results.
My son was on acutane twice and like your son, it was the only thing that helped. His skin became very dry so you might want to tell your son to put some type of moisturized on his skin at night before going to bed.
Your son may even end up with some scarring if he has been dealing with acne for a long period of time. I suggest using Bio Oil which has been used in England for many years. This oil is used for scars and stretch marks but I have discovered it also works great at reducing wrinkles. I've been using it for about 10 months and I don't have so much as one line any where on my face and I'm 48 years old! So make sure you buy two bottles of this so you won't be stealing your son's - lol! I buymine at Rite Aid drug store and it is located where the band aids, first aid kits, ace bandages, etc. Since I don't know if you have any Rite Aids in your area, you may want to call around the drug stores in your area to see if they carry this. It cost about $11.99 for two ounces.
He can also try using Tea Tree oil which is a natural antibiotic but be warned, it smells awful! If he has a bad outbreak, he can use hemorrhoid cream - don't laugh, that's what it is made for, to reduce inflamation.
Hope this helps.
Last edited by dawn07; 08-04-2008 at 10:42 AM.
Thanks for all the advice. We are a week into the accutane therapy and have more downs than up, but realistically expected it.
BIO OIL ROCKS. I work with burn survivors and it is my favorite new product for moisturizing and helping to minimize their scarring. I have a bottle on my shelf (for me!)and it is ready to go for Joe when the dryness that accutane is infamous for starts, but so far he hasnt been too dry. Even his lips are not chapping (yet). He is only on a 40 mg per day dose, maybe his oil production level could use a higher dosage, but we will see when we go back to the derm at the end of the month.
Tea tree oil burns him. He won't use it anymore. He is still covered with acne on his cheeks, under his chin, forehead and even in his eye brows. The parts of his face that are not affected seem to have smooth uncongested skin, which is new for us. This is a painful process and heartwrenching for parents. We can't fix it or go through it for them.
Thanks again for the encouragement. It is easy to feel down.
I'm 25 and I started Accutane in May 2008... It did get worse before it got better and I've documented the pictures so I can encourage myself through the process... sometimes thus far, it feels like some of the regression days are so terrible...
I have suffered through the scabbing nose, ears and cheeks and I can recommend the best lip balm for him because he will most definitely need it.
1. Lip Vitamins
2. Kiehl's Lip Balm #1
And for lips and inside his nose at night time when he starts scabbing - use Aquaphor, NOT Vaseline or Triple Antibiotic Ointment (like Neosporin)
Last edited by moderator2; 08-06-2008 at 07:56 PM.
Reason: posted disallowed website(s)
Additionally - I wanted to add that everything I've read besides those highly cynical folks ~~ is that Accutane is considered the 'Cure' and it has truly shown improvement thus far... I can't wait to finish.
Give him encouragement and let him know, he will look back and smile later.
You're a great mom for encouraging him to go through this now and stop some of the scarring.
I appreciate your advice from your own experience, because as I say, I am just tagging along on this journey with Joe. We are on day 9 and he still has many many pimples. They fill with the yellow pus (sorry for the visual), but calm down quickly. There is clearing but of course its not AS MUCH or AS FAST as he would like.
Dryness still hasnt been an issue, but I attribute it to his low dose 40mg/day. Plus he is one oily kid! Cute too.
Hope all is going well with your treatment! Keep posting! It helps alot.
I was on Accutane for 6 months my junior year of high school. I'm a female and had dealt with bad acne since 11. Tell you son it takes about 2 months to really see the results he's expecting but it is worth it. I remember trying on a dress for winter formal and was so happy because I didn't have to cover my back. (i had bad acne on my back). I have a few tips
He'll hate this one but burts bees moisturizing lip balm or stick or whatever works wonders once the dryness comes. Also to help the dry skin that occurred everywhere I recommend finding a lotion/body creme that is not too thin or thick. The thicker it is the longer the skin takes to absorb and the thinner it is the less effective. I used all burts bees products while on accutane. For the face I used neutrogena moisturizer.
Also I've been off for about 5 years but my acne has never come back as bad as it was before. I can manage it with neutrogena acne kit now. Much cheaper than the products, (gels, creams and pills) i was taking pre-accutane.
I really wish I could get my hands on that accutane stuff my doctor thinks my skin problems are "no big deal".....well it is when you're walkin around with it all over your face I have the worst skin all over my body acne on my face, strech marks from my neck to my thighs and to top it all off i have porceline white skin which is litterally see through so you can see veins everywhere, I am so so tired of cleansing cleansing cleansing I feel dirty all the time because my skin is so greasy and all the pimples really hurt I'm tired of being in constant pain
You don't say how old you are and that may be one reason the dr. does not want to prescribe the Accutane. If you are a female and want to take this med, you must sign a contract stating that you on birth control. Some dr.'s want you to be on the pill for at least a month or two before starting Accutane. Most will not accept the use of condoms because it is not 100% fail proof. This med can cause severe birth defects if you are or get pregnant while on this med. You must also agree to not get pregnant for several months after stopping this med.
You also have to visit your dr. once a month and have a blood test done every month while on this. My son had to see the dermatologist, get the prescription and then make an appointment at the hospital to have blood work done within three days of seeing the dr.
You will also have to go on line and register so the FDA can keep a record on those taking this. It is a very serious drug and therefore, you need to be informed of all the side effects that can happen and usually do.
Has your dermatologist ever put you on antibiotics? If not, discuss this possibility with him. My son swears by tea tree oil that is put directly on the face. This is a natural antibiotic although it smells awful.
If you still feel like you want to go on Accutane, it may be time to find another dermatologist. Some of us forget that we "hire" our dr.'s and therefore, can fire them just as well. I have "fired" a few myself!