antibiotics and acne....& salicylic acid?

I thought I'd post here instead of the skincare board for more responses.

I've been seeing a dermatologist since January. First, he had me on doxycyclene for about 2 months, then switched me to minocyclene because the doxy was tearing up my stomach. My acne seemed much better on the doxy, but since switching it has returned, although not as bad (very few cysts, just bumpy zits and whiteheads, I rarely get blackheads, mostly cysts). At the time of the doxy, he had me use benzoyl peroxide gel. When I was switched to the mino, we also switched to Klaron Lotion (sodium sulfacetamide lotion) at that time.

So yesterday, since the acne isn't totally cleared, he suggested switching to Cleacin (Clindamycin) antibiotic. I'm kind of tired of taking all these antibiotics. What if I get sick and actually need them?! And I'm not about to take them for the rest of my life, so we need to find a better solution.

Any help?

SF Bay Area, CA * "The Angel-Goddess-Guru of Haircoloring"
3b/c/a mix. medium texture, low porosity
* pw: just4curlies
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That dermatologist is jerking you around. Antibiotics are only a bandaid for acne. They don't work longterm, and they cause untold problems in the longterm. Find a better derm who will put you on Accutane...the only real cure.
That dermatologist is jerking you around. Antibiotics are only a bandaid for acne. They don't work longterm, and they cause untold problems in the longterm. Find a better derm who will put you on Accutane...the only real cure.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
Although I agree about the antibiotics, I don't want the accutane. I am not a good candidate for accutane. I have extremely high cholesterol and take zocor for it, and my acne is not bad enough for that strong of a treatment. Neither he nor my regular MD want me to take it. Personally, I'm sick of taking pills already. I think I'll call him tomorrow and tell him I'm not filling the prescription, and if there's anything else I can do.

This sucks, because I normally have good skin. But the last 2 yrs around January, I've been getting a nasty breakout. Last time I was treated with minocyclene for 2 months and it cleared up. Didn't come back until this last Jan.

Weird side note, I normally have enlarged, inflamed tonsils that get those cruddy white balls stuck in them that I have to dig out with a q-tip. Anyway, when I'm on the meds, I never have that problem. They've been completely gone this whole time on the meds, and I had them daily before.

SF Bay Area, CA * "The Angel-Goddess-Guru of Haircoloring"
3b/c/a mix. medium texture, low porosity
* pw: just4curlies
* My Motto: Strand Test!
some hair pics
-- gone, but never forgotten.
Have you ever tried a topical antibiotic treatment? I was never able to tolerate any oral meds but I am on Clindagel (as well as Differin at night) and it works really well.

I could not take Accutane either and I doubt I would anyway...too many risky side effects.
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Accutane is not that risky, when taken under the direction of a qualified MD and as long as one does not become pregnant while taking it or for 1 month afterwards. It's only 6 months of pills...for perfect skin for 10 years or longer. It was worth it to me. I was 32 year old when I took it, and I had no problems. My acne was never severe, but it was very resistant and had been going on for 20 years, so my derm (once I finally found a good one after many quacks), felt I qualified for Accutane based on that.

As for high cholesterol...I believe there is a "pulsed" regimen (2 months on, 2 months off, 2 months on, etc.) for people with cholesterol issues.

I'd get a 2nd or 3rd opinion if I were you.
um i thought white on the tonsils were an infection cuz i had that twice before and had antibiotics to help with it usually follows with a sore throat.. i would think taking a Qtip to it would not be good.
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um i thought white on the tonsils were an infection cuz i had that twice before and had antibiotics to help with it usually follows with a sore throat.. i would think taking a Qtip to it would not be good.
Originally Posted by tinicurlyd
Yep, I suspect I have ongoing tonsillitis, which clears up on the antibiotics. But I don't have a sore throat. I did have strep for about 3 months before the dr finally confirmed and treated it. That was 2 yrs ago. I've had the tonsil problem since. Oh, and I just nudge them loose.

Hey tinicurlyd, have you seen a dermatologist here? Have a referral for me?

SF Bay Area, CA * "The Angel-Goddess-Guru of Haircoloring"
3b/c/a mix. medium texture, low porosity
* pw: just4curlies
* My Motto: Strand Test!
some hair pics
-- gone, but never forgotten.
Accutane is not that risky, when taken under the direction of a qualified MD and as long as one does not become pregnant while taking it or for 1 month afterwards. It's only 6 months of pills...for perfect skin for 10 years or longer. It was worth it to me. I was 32 year old when I took it, and I had no problems. My acne was never severe, but it was very resistant and had been going on for 20 years, so my derm (once I finally found a good one after many quacks), felt I qualified for Accutane based on that.

As for high cholesterol...I believe there is a "pulsed" regimen (2 months on, 2 months off, 2 months on, etc.) for people with cholesterol issues.

I'd get a 2nd or 3rd opinion if I were you.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
Agreed 100%.

I know we've had the accutane discussion before on this board...but it was a miracle worker for me! I was against it at first, but so happy I finally decided to do it. I only wish I had decided to do it many many years ago! My skin is perfect now.

BTW you're VERY closely monitored while on the drug...blood draws and doc visits every month to monitor labs, etc.

Just my input. Nothing else ever worked for me and I'd had acne since middle school. Good luck. I know acne can be such a terrible thing.
im sorry i dont. wish i could help ya out tho . .. im 32 but i use to have clear skin , then when i was about 20ish my skin decided to change and i had acne..i tryed everything under the sun for yrs but it wasnt that bad to go to a Derm. more trail n error to find what helps...i dunno if im older or what im using but now i get hardley get a pimple.. i exfoliate about twice a week with a mild exfoliater scrub..use a light night cream for sensative skin and a sph 30 mousterizer for sensative skin during the day , if i do get a pimple i spot treat it with a salicid 2.0% since BP messes up my skin and made the acne worse. i have had clear skin since now and loving it.
Modified CG-Use Low Poo
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*Suave gels ( love crunchy gels )*My HGs-Re:coil, Jessicurls , Boots , Loreal Spiral Curl Mousse, Tigi Amp*

*~Show Your True Beauty Cuz Curls Rock!~*
I don't know how bad your breakouts are, but I have been using jojoba oil on my face for five months now and my skin looks better than it ever has. Of course I don't think I have what you would call "acne" but I have pimple breakouts that came and went with stress (which was very frequently) and it was very rare for me to have a period of completely clear skin. Now it is unusual for me to have pimples! I went to a derm once when she prescribed me benzoyl peroxide and clindamycin, and not listening to me about how sensitive my skin is, I ended up going back three days later with an awful rash all over my face and chest. That was the last time I went to a doc for skin help.

I started using the jojoba after I read a post here about it. I drop several drops of it into my face cleanser at night before I scrub my face, then drop one or two drops into my moisturizer. The oil is supposedly a "biological match" to your own sebum (skin oils) which helps your skin to stop overproducing oil. When I first started using it, it didn't do much except moisturize my skin reaaally well, but right around the three month mark I noticed a drastic difference in my breakouts. I also have extremely soft skin.

You can find a lot of information about jojoba oil and acne on the internet. As a disclaimer, most of the testimonies say that the acne will get worse before it gets better with the oil. If you want to try it, I bought my jojoba oil at Whole Foods.

Good luck! I hope you can find a good solution.
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im sorry i dont. wish i could help ya out tho .
Originally Posted by tinicurlyd
That's ok, and good for you! It sucks having acne after all these years of being relatively clear, only the occasional pms zit all these years. And I'm 43! So, over 25 yrs of clear skin, now this.

SF Bay Area, CA * "The Angel-Goddess-Guru of Haircoloring"
3b/c/a mix. medium texture, low porosity
* pw: just4curlies
* My Motto: Strand Test!
some hair pics
-- gone, but never forgotten.
Oh i have jojoba oil i got at TJs ..im afraid to use it in my mousterizer or facial wash since my skin is a lil oily as well . might make my skin oilier but ill try it out to see..Good idea.
Modified CG-Use Low Poo
Use Suaves & VO5 Condish For CG-Honey+ Condish=My curls are loving it!
*Suave gels ( love crunchy gels )*My HGs-Re:coil, Jessicurls , Boots , Loreal Spiral Curl Mousse, Tigi Amp*

*~Show Your True Beauty Cuz Curls Rock!~*
Thanks lauraloo, I'll have to do some searching about the jojoba.

SF Bay Area, CA * "The Angel-Goddess-Guru of Haircoloring"
3b/c/a mix. medium texture, low porosity
* pw: just4curlies
* My Motto: Strand Test!
some hair pics
-- gone, but never forgotten.
Oh i have jojoba oil i got at TJs ..im afraid to use it in my mousterizer or facial wash since my skin is a lil oily as well . might make my skin oilier but ill try it out to see..Good idea.
Originally Posted by tinicurlyd
It makes sense that if you put oil on your face it will make it oiler, but I promise it won't! It feels "heavy" going on but quickly soaks in and feels heavenly when you wake up. I think it's important to use with your face wash because it will help the oil get into your pores and clean out the dirty sebum. I use an exfoliating face wash (Biore) with the oil every night, and a small drop of oil with my Neutrogena Touch of Sun spf 30 face moisturizer.

I was scared at first to put the oil on my face too, but now I actually rub it in to problem pimples and dry spots. As I said, it took close to 3 months before I noticed a big difference in pimples, so hang in there! (The oil also feels great rubbed into ashy knees, elbows, and heels, and feels great on my cuticles).

ETA: CurliLocks- I really hope it works for you. I was totally skeptical at first but my skin is worlds better now. Plus it's a lot cheaper than filling scripts from the derm and it's all natural!
Not all who wander are lost.

Fine and thin 3a. PW: curls
K well i put about 1-2 drops with my night time mousterizer 2night , i dont have any pimples ( i might get 1 every few months ) but if this makes my face stay clear too and soft then ill be happy. i use a foaming face wash from Aveda so i dont know if ill put oil with it when i wash , i think i will stick with the night creme and then mabye put some in my day time sph mousterizer later on.
Modified CG-Use Low Poo
Use Suaves & VO5 Condish For CG-Honey+ Condish=My curls are loving it!
*Suave gels ( love crunchy gels )*My HGs-Re:coil, Jessicurls , Boots , Loreal Spiral Curl Mousse, Tigi Amp*

*~Show Your True Beauty Cuz Curls Rock!~*
OK, exactly what kind of jojoba oil am I looking for? It certainly can't hurt to try it at this point. :P

SF Bay Area, CA * "The Angel-Goddess-Guru of Haircoloring"
3b/c/a mix. medium texture, low porosity
* pw: just4curlies
* My Motto: Strand Test!
some hair pics
-- gone, but never forgotten.
Guide18
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If the jojoba oil doesn't work for you --

Have you tried Retin-A or similar? For me, the combo of Retin-A and a topical disinfectant like benzoyl peroxide gives me perfectly clear skin.

A topical antibiotic like Clindamycin can help a lot without the digestive and immunological problems of oral antibiotics. But the combination with a retinoid is the real one-two punch.

I agree that oral antibiotics are not in any way a long-term solution, although your ongoing tonsil issue is kind of a concern. Have you been taking probiotics and/or active culture yogurt? Helps a lot with the stomach woes.
If the jojoba oil doesn't work for you --

Have you tried Retin-A or similar? For me, the combo of Retin-A and a topical disinfectant like benzoyl peroxide gives me perfectly clear skin.

A topical antibiotic like Clindamycin can help a lot without the digestive and immunological problems of oral antibiotics. But the combination with a retinoid is the real one-two punch.

I agree that oral antibiotics are not in any way a long-term solution, although your ongoing tonsil issue is kind of a concern. Have you been taking probiotics and/or active culture yogurt? Helps a lot with the stomach woes.
Originally Posted by SuZenGuide
SuZen - Do you apply both all over, or just on the acne area? I would guess you'd need to apply wherever you'd break out normally.

I think I'll call and ask if I can do a topical antibiotic or retinoid instead. And call my insurance for another referral for a second opinion.

SF Bay Area, CA * "The Angel-Goddess-Guru of Haircoloring"
3b/c/a mix. medium texture, low porosity
* pw: just4curlies
* My Motto: Strand Test!
some hair pics
-- gone, but never forgotten.
I had lots of trouble with acne. There are options besides antibiotics or Accutane. You could try topical creams like Retin-A or Differin. The birth control pills I take also make a big difference for me in keeping my skin clear (are you on the pill?)

That said, Accutane is the only thing that really made a difference for my skin. It did make my cholesterol skyrocket, but it was short term--with a few changes in diet while I was on Accutane, I was able to control it, and once I went off the Accutane it was no longer a problem. They draw blood every month to make sure it is not having adverse effects on your health and that you are not pregnant. The dryness while you are on it is really trying, though (I would freak out if I lost my chapstick!) and to this day I have a problem with dry lips because of it.

It really did work a miracle for me. I no longer feel like I am defined by my skin problems.

i have successfully been using tazorac. you can read about it on web md. at first i wanted to treat without prescription meds but this has really been working. meanwhile i've also modified my diet (sort of the insulin resistance based diet, even though i don't have insulin resistance) and it's been good. there's a thread out here about that. plus canitbechristine wrote about drinking green tea for your skin. i think you're like me...you want to be healed and not be on so much medicine if possible. i didn't want to do accutane either but so far my skin is much improved and i'm happy. the tazorac is $25 for a 30g tube. it's a small price to pay. a tube lasts more than a month and i use it on my face and shoulders/back. the only bad thing, you can't use it while trying to get pregnant, while pregnant or breastfeeding.

good luck!!!!
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