Harmful Effects of Accutane

Isotretinoin is sold under the brand name Accutane. Isotretinoin is also known as 13-cis-retinoic acid. This medicine is used for treating severe acne and for the prevention of skin cancer. Being a potent medication, Accutane is an extensively effective medicine for getting rid of breakouts. Usually, when antibiotic pills and creams don’t work effectively, doctors prescribe Accutane for their patients to get rid of their acne. However, consumers must realize that Accutane has specific short-term and long-term side-effects. Amongst the most severe side effects of Accutane is a congenital disability. If a pregnant woman consumes Accutane (isotretinoin), it might result in miscarriage, infant death, or premature birth. Due to the drug’s risks, it is recommended for pregnant women to enroll in a special pregnancy prevention program before being prescribed the drug Accutane (isotretinoin). 

Accutane (Isotretinoin) Side-Effects

Some of the most common side-effects of Accutane are:

  1. Vision problems 
  2. Dry nose, nosebleeds
  3. Dry skin, rash
  4. Back pain, joint pain
  5. Chapped, dry lips
  6. Itching
  7. Dry eyes

My Personal Experience Using Accutane 

Suffering from acne at the mere age of eighteen, I tried various medications and prescriptions. However, nothing worked. My acne would not go away, no matter what ointment I applied or soap I used to wash my face. It wasn’t until my doctor prescribed for me to consume Accutane. He told me, “It worked like magic to cure acne.” Of course, I was relieved to hear that I’d get a chance to have clear skin and not worry about severe acne before an important meeting or a date night. However, my doctor did warn me about the certain side-effects that came with the consumption of this effective medicine. So, I was careful. The first few days with the consumption of Accutane were smooth. The convenient use did not last when the side-effects started appearing. At first, I had a few minor back pains and joint pains. After a few days, I noticed, my nose bleeds were more frequent. Dry lips and vision problems, was Accutane really worth all the struggles and pain? No. It wasn’t. Nothing came before my health. Although it took me a few days to attain good health, I am glad I stopped using Accutane as a way to get rid of my acne and tried natural remedies instead, which worked perfectly fine! 

Long Term Effects of Accutane 

Birth Defects

The consumption of isotretinoin (Accutane) can lead to miscarriages, or the baby might be born with slits instead of ears. Since 1985, the labels of the isotretinoin (Accutane) medicine had a black box warning, which explained in detail its “severe congenital disabilities” or “extremely high risk.” The female consumers, especially those who may become pregnant or were pregnant, were strictly warned of its side effects. Some of the congenital disabilities listed on the boxes’ warnings included anything from half-slit ears or other face-related abnormalities to negative skull development. Accutane might also affect the central nervous, immune system, certain hormones, and the heart. About half of the women who consume Accutane are at the age of childbearing. More than 2,000 users of Accutane became pregnant from 1982 to 2006. The result of these pregnancies were spontaneous or elective abortions. 

Gastrointestinal Disorders: Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis

Various studies have shown a strong link of Accutane with two gastrointestinal disorders: Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Both of the aforementioned diseases are inflammatory bowel diseases, and their effects on different people might vary. Crohn’s disease occurs in the digestive tract, or it might affect the small intestine’s lower end. Whereas ulcerative colitis affects the large intestines’ lining along with negatively affecting the rectum. UC and Crohn’s disease’s most common symptoms are cramping, fever, mouth sores, weight loss, joint pain, blood in the stool, disease’s most common symptoms, and swelling. Ulcerative colitis can be cured with the surgical removal of the large intestine. Whereas Crohn’s diseases cannot be cured. However, it is manageable with various medications. 

Inflammatory Bowel Diseases from Accutane 

A piece of confirmed evidence was presented, those demonstrating a link between the consumption of Accutane and the development of IBD by the University of North Carolina Chapel Hills’ researchers. With 21,832 healthy individuals, 8,189 cases of IBD were compared significantly. The studys’ results showed that the individuals who consumed Accutane had a 1.68 times higher risk of suffering from IBD than those who never consumed the drug. The potential number for the risk increased by 2.67 among those patients who filled four or more Accutane prescriptions. Individuals who consume Accutane are 4.36 times more likely to develop UC than patients who don’t consume the drug. 

Accutane and Depression

Various studies have linked a connection between the consumption of Accutane and the development of the psychiatric disorder. Hundreds of reports were received by the FDA linking depression with isotretinoin consumption from 1982 to May 2000. These reports included 110 hospitalizations and 37 suicide cases for suicidal or depression behavior. Whereas 284 cases were of non-hospitalized depression. Among the reports received by the FDA, 37 suicides were related to the users of isotretinoin over an 18-year time period. In 1998, various brands that manufactured Accutane responded to the suicide and depression report by adding a medication label to warn its consumers of its potential link related to mental health disorders. Depression and suicide reports before 2005, linked to Accutane’s use accounting for the fourth-highest number of adverse reactions in the U.S. It is still unknown by researchers as to why Accutane could lead to depression or suicidal behavior. Confirmed association and proof between Accutane and depression are still lacking. However, it is recommended to seek professional help before taking any health-care decision. 

Accutane Lawsuit

The side-effects of isotretinoin medication have been so severe that they led to 7,000 lawsuits against Accutane manufacturers. Most lawsuits of Accutane have caused various inflammatory bowel disorders and Crohn’s disease. In 2014, a court dismissed the majority of more than 7,000 lawsuits filed against a renowned Accutane manufacturing company. In 2018, the New Jersey Supreme Court dismissed another 500 lawsuits by the angry customers of Accutane. Thousands of people who suffered from the severe side effects of Accutane filed lawsuits against various renowned companies, claiming not to have been warned about the drug’s dangerous side effects before use. The majority of the litigation dealt with ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. There have been no known large-scale settlements or class actions for patients injured by the medication of acne. 

“Since 1984, there have been suggestions that Accutane might be linked to various forms of inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn’s disease. Despite numerous studies on the subject, no such linkage has been found — at least not with substantial reliability.”— American Medical Association

 

 

The Ugly Side-Effects of Top Acne Prescriptions

When an individual suffers from acne, it is common for him to seek help through prescriptions and various medications. However, specific acne prescriptions might cause severe side-effects that can, in rare cases, prove to be life-threatening.

What Causes Acne?

When hair follicles are clogged, acne is caused. Pimples or small infections are created on the clogged pore’s skin surface. When this happens, individuals are more likely to resort to treatments and prescriptions that dry up the excess oils and clear away the bacteria that lead to their acne.

Acne Prescription Treatment Methods

There are various acne treatments; lifestyle remedies, oral medication, topical medication, and medical procedures. Depending on your body’s allergic reactions, you can choose the method that is for you. However, if you’ve thought of pursuing medical treatment instead of a natural way to heal, you must keep in mind that certain top acne prescriptions come with a set of ugly side-effects. Before consuming a particular medicine, it is recommended you consult your doctor to learn about the prescriptions’ ingredients and side-effects, especially if you suffer from inflammatory acne or cystic acne.

Antibiotics

Antibiotics are often prescribed at a higher dose than usual to those who suffer from acne. However, individuals should preferably avoid antibiotics for acne treatment when possible. Some of the antibiotics used for treating acne are; macrolide (erythromycin, azithromycin) and tetracycline (minocycline, doxycycline). These antibiotics can make its consumers feel the following effects;

  1. Dizziness and Lightheadedness
  2. Skin color changes
  3. Upset stomach
  4. Sun sensitivity

Dizziness and Lightheadedness from Antibiotics

Dizziness is often caused due to dehydration or low blood pressure. That’s what I thought when I suffered from severe dizziness and lightheadedness. No matter how much rest I took or water I drank, my dizziness grew severely with each passing day. It wasn’t until I consulted the local hospital that I came to know that it was the adverse effects of antibiotics I was going through. Antibiotics left a bitter taste in my mouth, and I felt a significant loss in taste whenever I’d consume food.

Skin Color Changes from Antibiotics

A derivative of tetracycline known as minocycline is a type of antibiotic prescribed to those who suffer from any inflammatory skin diseases such as acne or rosacea. When it is oxidized, the minocycline turns black, which leads to skin discoloration, oral mucosa, conjunctiva, bones, nails, teeth, and thyroid glands. It has been reported through various minocycline therapy users that they suffered from hyperpigmentation after its long term use with at least 100 mg/day.

Upset Stomach from Antibiotics

Suffering from seasonal flu once, my physician prescribed antibiotics for me to consume and gain relief. However, when I consumed antibiotics, I suffered from nausea and diarrhea. I consulted my doctor, and he told me that it was normal for me to feel this way. He suggested that I took enough bed rest with intravenous (IV) fluid while stopping antibiotic consumption until my diarrhea diminishes. It was only through my doctor that I got to know when the bacterial balance of the stomach is upset with the intake of antibiotics; the consumer might experience certain short-term or long-term diarrhea or nausea.

Sun-Sensitivity from Antibiotics

Medications that cause adverse reactions when exposed to the sun are known as photosensitizers. These medicines consist of such molecules; when destabilized, it increases skin sensitivity to the sun due to the excess build-up of chemicals. According to the FDA list, the following antibiotics have a high chance of triggering sun sensitivity;

  1. Tetracycline
  2. Ciprofloxacin
  3. Doxycycline
  4. Ofloxacin
  5. Trimethoprim

Sun-sensitivity reactions on one’s skin after the consumption of antibiotics might vary from person to person. Some people can consume antibiotics without suffering from any adverse effects. At the same time, others might suffer from adverse negative effects.

Birth Control Pills

Birth control can be used for treating acne because birth control pills keep the hormones intact and in the preferred balance by reducing acne-causing androgens in one’s body. If you consume birth control pills to get rid of your acne, there is a high chance of you suffering from certain adverse side-effects.

Common Side Effects of Birth Control Pills

Some of the most common side effects of birth control pills are as follows;

  • nausea
  • lighter periods
  • sore or swollen breasts
  • spotting between periods
  • mood changes
  • weight gain

Serious Side-Effects of Birth Control Pills

Birth control pills’ side effects might be rare, but they can be life-threatening if they occur. If the consumer feels nauseated after consuming one of the medicines, he should consult his doctor immediately. Birth control pills impact vary from woman to woman. For some women, the effects can extend far beyond stopping pregnancy. It can impact their health rigorously, causing damage to their organs and even death in unfortunate cases. For some women, the effects can last for six months. Whereas, for others, the consequences can last up to a year. Some of the severe side effects that women might face include:

  1. Blood Clots
  2. High Blood Pressure
  3. Swelling of the legs or thighs
  4. Headache
  5. Abdominal pain
  6. Chest pain
  7. Blurred vision

Top Acne Prescriptions Can Be Life-Threatening

The Food and Drug Administration set out a warning regarding the consumption of certain acne products that contain salicylic acid or hydrogen peroxide. It is serious and life-threatening to consume the aforementioned ingredients because they can cause allergic reactions or severe irritation to the consumer. Suppose an individual consumes a prescription medicine that contains salicylic acid or hydrogen peroxide. In that case, there are high chances for them to suffer from itching, burning, redness, dryness, peeling, and swelling on their face. A medical officer at FDA conducted a report on the ugly side-effects of acne prescriptions and products. Khurana says, “There is currently no mention of the possibility of these very severe allergic reactions on the product labels,” she continues, “It’s important that consumers know about them, and that they know what to do if they occur.”

Suppose you are suffering from acne and wondering what you can do to stop yourself from suffering from an OTC topical acne product’s adverse effects; in that case, you can start by looking at the product packages’ section of Active Ingredient(s) on the Drug Facts label. Drug Safety Communication (DSC) was issued by the FDA to inform healthcare professionals and consumers of any potential danger.

Unhealthy Products of Acne

Being available as lotions, solutions, gels, face scrubs, toners, gels, face washes, and cleansing pads, salicylic acid, or hydrogen peroxide are the active ingredients potentially causing more harm than benefit on one’s skin. From 1969 till January 28, 2013, the FDA received 131 reports from both manufacturers and consumers regarding allergic and hypersensitivity-related reactions. The uncanny thing is that those adverse reactions were associated with the products that consisted of the active ingredients of salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. Within 24 hours of use, 42% of the reactions occur. The age group of the affected individuals was between 11 to 78 years.

Be Careful with What You Use

Purchasing and using products that do more damage than benefit to your skin is self-harm. You are causing harm to your skin and body. Spend extra time researching for a safe way to get rid of your acne. You can implement natural remedies that can prove to be extensively helpful in attaining your desired skin. Be careful with what you use. Because often, the acne prescriptions which you think are effective end up causing severe adverse effects on your face and body.

Sick of Acne? Heal with Our Diet!

From famous celebrities like Selena Gomez and Kendall Jenner to even the newest Spider-Man, Tom Holland himself, the grips of acne have proven to hold many hostage far and wide. In fact, clinical studies indicate that between 40 and 55 percent of the adult population ages 20 to 40 are diagnosed with low grade, persistent acne and oily skin. In other words, you are not alone.

Acne is a skin condition typically caused by excess oil production, clogged hair follicles, bacteria, and inflammation. A variety of associations are known to influence these factors, such as stress, medications, hormonal changes, and diet. Though some would advocate for expensive topical creams or potentially damaging medications, we here at Acne Natural Healing believe that the road to a glowing outside starts from within. Okay yes, a kind heart is important, but we were thinking more along the lines of the squishy, squirmy, churny parts. That’s right! We want to fuel and strengthen our amazing gastrointestinal system! Since we don’t want to continue putting things inside of us we were never built to ingest, we have researched and compiled for you instead, 5 ALL-NATURAL diet tips to help prevent and curb acne. All based on SCIENCE, of course!

 

1. REMOVE THE REFINED CARBOHYDRATES

Refined carbohydrates are sugars and grains that have been stripped of all bran, fiber, and nutrients. Foods rich in refined carbohydrates include all the yummy and addicting stuff – white bread, pizza dough, pasta, white rice, sweet desserts, and rice cakes.

The problem with refined carbs, however, has to do with a small but fierce hormone we call insulin. Refined carbs, along with sugary soft drinks, have a high glycemic load, which pretty much means our bodies will break them down really quickly and thus cause rapid increases in our blood glucose levels. Normally, insulin will then be released by our pancreas to bring down these levels, however, too much insulin at a time can wreak havoc and trigger drastic increases in IGF-1 production which is known to make our skin cells grow more quickly and boost oil production.

Instead of choosing these food-coma inducing and acne triggering refined carbs, we can opt for more whole-grain foods! We don’t have to be deprived of all those yummy carbs our body and brain need for fuel. It may taste a little different at first, but over time, you’ll wonder how you ever could have eaten anything else! You can find whole-grain versions of rice, bread, cereal, flour, and pasta at most grocery stores. Tell those refined carbs to get out of our status quo!

 

2. STOP WITH THE GREASE

It’s a hot summer day, and though our generation may not be quite familiar with the romance of Danny and Sandy in the 1978 musical, we sure are familiar with the romance of another great American paring – French fries and milkshakes! Unfortunately, I got some bad news for ya. These foods are dripping (literally) with potentially life threatening saturated fats and an unhealthy amount of omega-6 fatty acids!

Don’t get me wrong, I love me some crispy fries every now and then, but our typical “western diet” tends to go too far! Studies have indicated that our low fiber-high fat diet may aggravate acne by raising insulin and IGF-1 levels. Furthermore, it has been associated with the thinning of important gut lining bacteria and increased inflammation! Do not be misled though that all oils are bad for your skin. Both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are necessary and even beneficial. They improve elasticity, moisture, and flexibility! In fact, dry, itchy, scaly skin can often be a sign of fatty acid deficiency. However, our “western diet” typically includes way more omega-6 fatty acids, which when consumed in excess, increases inflammation, than omega-3 fatty acids. All in all, like many things in life, too much of anything is never a good thing.

Let’s try to incorporate more ways to add omega-3 fatty acids into our diet! Some popular meat options are fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel, sardines, and anchovies. Plant based diets can include hemp seeds, chia seeds, walnuts, and flax seeds.

 

3. ADD FRUITS & VEGGIES: “TASTE THE RAINBOW” ™

You know them, you will love them, it’s time to incorporate more of them! What can be more natural, than fruits and vegetables! Vitamins A, E, and minerals, especially zinc, have been proven to influence skin hydration, nutrient absorption, and inflammation. In acne, bacteria, excess oil, and skin cells break through the wall of the pore beneath the skin’s surface. The body’s immune system responds by combating the bacteria, which causes inflammation. This inflammation leads to the characteristically typical redness, swelling, pain, and blemishes. Incorporating a wide variety of different colored fresh fruits and vegetables, all with different types of vitamins and minerals, into your daily diet can help mitigate and control our body’s natural immune response!

 

4. CUT THE CHEESE! No, not like that…

What is the deal with dairy? Though there has been no conclusive study so far to determine whether dairy directly influences acne development, there have been studies that suggest that dairy can increase insulin levels and produce more IGF-1. Milk and dairy products consumed in the United States come from pregnant cows. This means they contain a significant amount of hormones, which can also further aggravate acne development. However, we should be careful about this one since the vitamin D and the calcium contained in milk are crucial for many functions of the body, especially in women. But overall, we would say opt for less dairy and add more berries!

 

5. RECRUIT GUT SOLDIERS: SAY HELLO TO PROBIOTICS!!!

Spoiler alert: after searching high and low, the verdict is in. We are not alone in the universe. Or at least, not alone, even when we think we are. Welcome, fellow human, to the wonderful world of the gut microbiota. The gut microbiota is pretty much a big fancy science-y word for all the trillions of different microscopic organisms that reside in our gastrointestinal tract. These little creatures do everything from breaking down indigestible foods to regulating our immune system!

Probiotics are good bacteria for the gut. Upon ingestion, they provide a protective shield across the intestinal mucosa which has been linked to reduce inflammation and improve acne by regulating IGF-1 levels. Some foods with lots of natural probiotics are sauerkraut, yogurt, kefir, and fermented veggies such as one near and dear to my heart (not to mention gut), kimchi! Prebiotics, in a nutshell, are the food for those bacteria that can stimulate their growth and activity. Foods with prebiotics include fiber rich foods, garlic, onions, asparagus, apples, and oats.

Our little foreign friends improve our lives, clear our skin, and help get the gut job done! Did you know that there are 10 times more microbial cells in and on you than human cells? There’s more of them inside of you, than you yourself inside of you! If you ever feel like the universe is against you, just remember, there are trillions of little creatures inside of you rooting for you every step of the way!

 

Well there ya go! The mantra to eat more fresh fruits and veggies, lean proteins, and whole-grain carbs holds true time and time again! Change is definitely not easy – in fact, I have learned that our homeostasis loving bodies do not like it too and will do everything in its willpower to make you stick to your routines. Don’t be discouraged too soon! On average, it may take about 12 weeks of change to start seeing visible results.

Chronic acne is no easy matter to deal with. I know how debilitating to our everyday normal lives it can be causing serious self-esteem issues not to mention extreme pain and damage. It’s so stressful to add yet another thing to worry about in our ever-growing list of things to do! It IS a disease. And like any other disease, it is often merciless and sometimes completely random too. It is not your fault and it certainly does not make you any less worthy.

I hope, overtime, in these small, progressive, habit building changes we can learn to take care and love our bodies for the amazing machines they are that breathe and move and think and love. I hope we can look at this change in diet as not just another checklist, but something we do because we love it, we feel good about it, we may have glowing skin as a result, but most importantly, because we know it is fueling our bodies in just the right ways.

Using Aloe Vera for Acne Treatment

Aloe Vera, as a powerful topical treatment used on the skin. Aloe Vera is the most commonly used ingredient in skincare and for good reason. Its soothing, antimicrobial and healing properties nearly qualify it as a panacea for treating skin conditions.

Girl with problem skin and with sad displeased face is keeping her arms crossed over her chest, on blue background. Skin care and beauty concept

Aloe Vera’s moisturizing and anti-inflammatory properties are also noteworthy, which is why it is so often used to soothe sunburns and dermatitis. Using this same principle, Aloe soothes and calms acne, while balancing moisture levels to prevent against further breakouts.

Pure Aloe Vera without artificial coloring is best for acne, Aloe Vera can be used as a facial cleanser or mixed with lemon oil as a facial masque. Aloe is a powerful moisturizer when used in conjunction with other moisturizing products.

The ultimate skin healing ointment. Aloe Vera is the ultimate healing agent for sun damage, burns, sking abrasians with anti-aging effects.

Healing Power of Aloe Vera. Aloe has been around for millennia and used by humans as far back as can be remembered. Its healing properties on the skin and through ingestion have been documented through the centuries.

Aloe has been around for millennia and used by humans as far back as can be remembered. Its healing properties on the skin and through ingestion have been documented through the centuries. Here is a snapshot of the different civilizations that use aloe vera and how they were involved in it.

Egyption symbols

4,000 BC  In ancient Egypt, aloe was used by the Great Royal Wives of Egypt and other Egyptian royalty including Cleopatra, Nofretete and more.  It was the “plant of eternity” and “blood of life and health”, and even used in burying the dead to inhibit the decomposition process of the body.

2,200 BC  In Mesopotamia, clay tablets with Sumerian hieroglyphics were found showing the usage of aloe vera in a pharmaceutical manner including ingestion and use as a laxative to help heal the instestines.

ancient temple
Hieroglyphs

500 BC  In Egypt, books mentioned that skin infections could be cured by aloe.

350 BC  Alexander the Great used aloe to heal war-time wounds of Greek soldiers from fresh aloe groves that the Greeks obtained from the Island of Socotra.

Alexander the Great Mosaic

70 AD  In Greece, aloe was used to heal infections, treat wounds and burns, and mitigate hair loss and intestinal issues.

1100-1200 AD  Aloe was used primarly for Eczema treatment to help relieve symptoms with its antioxidant, antimicrobial, immune-boosting and wound healing properties.  Hildegard of Bingen, a Gernamn Benedictine abbess, visionary and philospher, mentioned aloe for its curing icterus, gastric intestinal infections and ulcers.

1600-1700 AD  Columbus and other Spanish explorers used aloe vera as traveling across the sea to heal themselves against the sun and other ailments.  Spanish Jesuit monks spread and harvested the plant around the Spanish kingdom and territories.

1820 The first edition of the U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP) said aloe vera is used to protect the skin and it remains official in the 33rd revision of the USP in 2010.

1930 Successfully used to treat chronic and severe radiation dermatitis.

Today Used in many scenarios today all around the world.  Most popular uses are for healing sunburns, chapped skin, and improving digestion through oral ingestion.

Acne Natural Healing