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Hey everyone, I haven't been around for several months.
In fact, I used to post under a different name, but couldn't remember it so I re-registered.

When I frequented this board a year ago people always asked about the success of Accutane. It was noted people rarely came back after finishing their treatment.

Quick history:
-I'm female in my mid/late 20s, had acne from the age of 11 on, tried every drug on the market as well as every type of soap/food and vitamin, in addition to acne I also get severe scarring and have skin so oily that wearing make-up isn't possible.

-About May 2003 I was put on Accutane. Within days oil was dripping off my face to the point of embarrassment. I had to keep a kleenex in my pocket to constantly blot my face. By the end of week 1 my skin dried and peeled as expected.
-By July 03 I noticed several symptoms that were listed under rare/severe. My derm said it was alright, but scaled back my dosage anyway. I was on 100 mgs a day and pushed back to 80. This is high, but my derm said he wanted me to have 1 mg per pound I weigh.
-A month later my skin was so dry and itchy I couldn't sleep or concentrate. No matter how much lotion of vaseline I put on it still wasn't enough. I was also popping Advil to deal with the pain.
-September 03 I fell into a serious depression. Nothing else in my life could've caused this except the Accutane. i was crying constantly and feeling pretty crappy about myself.

I should note that even with all of this I never expierienced a breakout. Not 1 zit the entire time I was on Accutane.

-October 03-my hair was falling out in clumps. Lucky for me I had thick hair to begin with. I lost about 50% of it. This of course made the depression worse.
-I stopped Accutane about 3 weeks early because the dryness, hair-loss and depression were more than I could deal with. At this point i didn't even care about my skin anymore. I was mourning my hair and feeling like crap all the time.
-2 weeks later I got my first zit in 6 months.

So it's been over a year since I went off Accutane. I use Retin A and Minocyclene as needed(up to once a week)
-My hair loss continued until about a month ago at which point I saw a doctor. It's only now beginning to grow back and looks like absolute crud. I have a few bald patches, it grows uneven and the texture's changed.
-My skin, I don't have cysts or even small zits often. But I'm not exactly happy with it. I look older-MUCH older. The dryness brought out fine lines and wrinkles I didn't have before. 2 years ago people used to guess my age up to 5 years younger, now they guess up to 5 years older. Also my skin is rough, red, scarred and splotchy.

Was it worth it/would I do it again?
-NO, never. I was so miserable on that stuff and the results weren't long lasting. Looking at photos now compared to before Accutane-I look no better. Different? yes. Better? No.

Would I recommend it to others?
-Believe it or not, yes. I have seen the results on friend of mine, she looks great. It didn't work for me, but it can work for some.

Good luck to everyone, I'd love to hear from others who have been off Accutane for some time.

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