In 2013 I decided to start seeing a dermatologist via my Doctor at Leeds Hospital in the UK. I had, seriously had enough of covering up breakouts and burning my skin to death on a sunbed to have a few days of clear skin. For years I had put off the idea of going on the horror story drug known as Roaccutane or in the UK mostly as Isotretinoin.
Isotretinoin is used to treat acne. Isotretinoin works by suppressing the activity of sebaceous glands in the skin. It reduces the amount of oil produced by these glands. Isotretinoin also reduces the size of the sebaceous glands and the inflammation that occurs with acne. Isotretinoin is given to people when their previous treatments for acne have not been successful.
What are Roaccutane side effects?
It is NOT for everyone. It really angers me when people ask to go on this drug when they only suffer from a few spots now and again! That is not Acne. Try not sleeping in your makeup and spend some money on a good cleanser.
This medication is really dangerous and I did my research on it for months before taking it. I had to leave my job and some days I couldn’t leave the house due to how red and dry my skin had become.
You have to have tests every month and some people have to take more than one course of drugs and sometimes they don’t work at all. It’s a complete risk.
My dose was 3x 20mg per day.
Roaccutane Side effects I suffered for 6 months to Year.
- Blood problems – you have to have a blood test taken every month
- Back pain – Mainly lower back, this was really painful!
- Pregnancy test every month, as well as use two types of contraception.
- Dry eyes- I also had glazed eyesight. So driving at night was out of the question.
- Extremely dry skin – you should use a moisturising cream or ointment while you are taking Isotretinoin.
- Fragile skin – skin may be damaged more easily. Paper cuts are like a knife cutting your skin.
- Inflammation and cracking of the skin of the lips or dry lips – you should use a lip balm. I had 6 different lip balms I would apply every hour. In the end I had to get a cream from the doctors with steroids in to help with how sore the cracks where.
- Irritation or inflammation of the eye or eyelid.
- Itching- every part of my skin itched, my hair was the worst although it was so dry it never got greasy at all which i actually enjoyed.
- Joint pain- the gym is hard work or any job that you have to be on your feet all day. Seriously tired all the time.
- Musclepain or tenderness
- Skin rash or rashes
- Dryness in the nose
- Headaches- suffered from really strong headaches
- Nose bleeds at least once a month.
- Depression- feeling very up and down, anyone who takes this I advise you have a good stable environment, I moved back home with my mum for a few months so she could monitor me.
This is why it isn’t worth going on if you don’t completely suffer from acne. You have to put your life on hold for 6 months to a year.
You can’t go into the sun at all and for 6 months after taking the treatment and you can’t have any operations or even a tooth pulled at the dentist as the bleeding may not stop.
I watched a really horrific documentary on the drug which put me off so much but that’s why it’s a good idea to watch if you are really serious about taking this as this isn’t just about vanity, it could risk your life.
Dying for clear skin
Next post I will show what products I used to help with all the side effects. I had to completely change my routine, makeup, skincare and even hair products as I went from oily skinned to no oil at all.
Here is my before and after Roaccutane treatment. The Day I started and the day I finished.
I can’t even remember what it is like to have bad skin anymore as it has been so long since I’ve had more than 3 spots at a time since the treatment. It really has been one of the best decisions I have made but, not everyone has the same results as me.
Heres a post about the products I used to help my side effects, while on Roaccutane
Here is my update 4 years after having Roaccutane
Here is how I deal with my acne scars I am left with.