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  • Retin A micro & initial breakout

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    Old 02-24-2006, 03:27 PM   #1
    surfnchick
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    Question Retin A micro & initial breakout

    First I'd like to thank everyone who's posted over the years. I've been reading for a while and it has helped me tremendously. This is my first post.

    I'm 41 and have had acne for 30 yrs. I've been down the road with the usual treatments including Accutane 2x. After a few years of just OTC products, I decided to try the dermatologist again. I've just finished my 3rd wk of Retin-A micro in the evening, topical clindamycin in the morning and minocin 50mg 2x/daily. I've read about the initial breakout and I believe I'm in the middle of it. Some dry/flaking skin was expected but it seems that every pore on my face is erupting with tiny whiteheads. It started in week 2 and was everywhere. Now my cheeks and forehead are clearer except for a 1 or 2 daily and it's limited to the T-zone around my nose, upper lip and chin. Is this part of the initial breakout or could it be a rash? Also did anyone notice that the breakout extended beyond the treated areas? I've noticed my neck and upper chest are also breaking out slightly and I didn't apply the Retin-A there.

    If this is a normal initial breakout, can anyone tell me in their experience how long I can expect this to last? This is miserable! I wouldn't even go out of the house if I didn't have to. I'm trying to hang in there. Any feedback would be appreciated.

     
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    Old 02-24-2006, 05:18 PM   #2
    cowriles
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    Re: Retin A micro & initial breakout

    Hello Surfnchick,

    I am on the same exact regiment as you are! Except, that I am on minocyline 2 times a day also. I am on my second day and you are getting me very nervous so for all you retin-a people out there we need info! Please...

    I always say to myself, could my face really get any worse than it is.. ( I asked my derm to rank my acne on a scale of 1-10, 10 being the worst, and he gave me a 8.5).. so maybe i'll go for the 10.. I have to find humor in this because it will drive me nutty.

    Surfnchick tell me about your acne and what I should expect in the next 2 weeks please.. I hope this is a miracle and will finally calm my acne down.......... maybe to a 6 or a 5..

     
    Old 02-24-2006, 08:18 PM   #3
    surfnchick
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    Re: Retin A micro & initial breakout

    Hi Cowriles,

    Don't ever lose your sense of humor! We can't afford to.

    My doctor has me on brand name minocycline ($225) because he believes that it's better absorbed than generic - a greater amount gets into the bloodstream. I did a search and found a site where other dermatologists seemed to agree.

    Anyway, before starting this treatment, my acne consisted of mostly clogged pores, blackheads, and at any given time, maybe 5 or 6 pimples which usually got infected and took forever to heal. In raking light (from the side), the texture was very bumpy. Because I have olive skin, I tend toward hyperpigmentation, so I have quite a few brown spots.

    The first week on this treatment I only noticed some drying maybe a little flakey skin around my nose. By the 2nd wk, I was getting pretty flakey and these tiny whiteheads started appearing. They were more concentrated around my jaw and chin but also appeared here and there overall. I made the mistake of trying to exfoliate with a washcloth. My skin has definitely gotten thinner and I managed to create what looked like burns in several locations. Don't do this! The good news is that the whiteheads look terrible but heal fairly quickly. The bad news is there are more of them the next day. This past week (3rd wk), my forehead and cheeks near the jawline and closer to hairline began to peel and is now revealing some smoother skin. I'm not breaking out in those areas hardly at all. It seems that the pores are clearer. It's still reddish and blotchy but I think it looks like it could be getting better. I use the aspirin mask (you may have read about it on this board) once a day and it does help settle the redness down. For the really red spots, I use the Visine treatment (it really does take the red out!) I have taken a day off the Retin-A once or twice just to give my face a rest. The T-zone area is still pretty bad though and unfortunately is so front and center - I can't hide it with my hair!

    I hope this doesn't scare you too much. I would love know how long this heavy breakout stage lasts though. It's much easier to tolerate something when there's a light at the end of the tunnel. I've been dealing with acne for so long now that I tend to be skeptical about any treatment. But I did a search on this message board for retin-A micro and did see alot of positive responses.

    Cowriles, have faith and keep me posted on your progress!

     
    Old 02-25-2006, 09:25 AM   #4
    cowriles
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    Re: Retin A micro & initial breakout

    Hi Again,

    My doc wrote me for the name brand mino i think it was dynacin, but it was 400 bucks for a month and my insurance covered some so i was left with $167 to pay for. No thanks, I'll stick with the generic, if its not working I suggest to the derm to increase the dosage of the generic. Now all i pay is 5 bucks for each antibiotic (topical and oral).. haven't filled the retin-a script yet so i don't know how much that is covered..

    I was doing the aspirin mask since the end of december, it was amazing. It decreased the time my zits hung out on my face and also faded some of the red marks.. but i fear that still doing the aspirin mask will be too much for my skin so i'm laying off it until i see if the retin a works for me..

    i'll keep u posted!

     
    Old 03-01-2006, 03:22 PM   #5
    suzyshop1
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    Smile Re: Retin A micro & initial breakout

    I cant say enough good things about retin-a micro.Its totally cleared my chin acne,and believe me i tried alot of prescription meds for it.I didnt have much of an initial breakout,guess i was one of the lucky ones.Ive been on it for bout a yr now.Totally changed my life,i now have one.I rarely get a pimple and when i do it goes away pretty fast.Only drawback is that it can be pretty expensive if your not covered by insurance.But since i used it just on my chin it lasted me almost 6 months before i had to get it refilled.Take care,and good luck.

     
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