My stats: 30 years old, mild-to-moderate acne since 13. My doctor thought I was the perfect candidate for spironolactone, since my adult acne had clear hormonal links, and everything else I'd tried -- antibiotics, topicals, diet, etc. -- had ultimately failed.
I started taking 100 mg/day, and within the first week I could detect a noticeable difference. My skin was considerably less oily, my light chest acne was gone, and my facial acne was slowly diminishing. I had a facial about 20 days after I began the course, and my aesthetician -- who's used to dealing with my sad cystic face -- was amazed by my progress. Unfortunately, however, I seem to have had a mild allergy to spiro. After taking my first dose, I woke up with symptoms that felt comparable to seasonal allergies: slightly sore throat, light congestion, a couple of swollen lymph nodes. I kept taking the meds, hoping that these symptoms would eventually go away . . . but three weeks into my prescription, I awoke one morning covered in hives. Yikes. Obviously stopped taking the spiro immediately after that. (Moving on to accutane now, in a last-ditch act of desperation.)
Also worth noting: some women report menstrual irregularities on this drug. I had one period on the drug, which was completely normal, but I stopped taking it mid-cycle and now I'm about two weeks late. My body seems to be taking its time putting its hormones back in their normal order.
I've been on Spironolactone for almost 3 years now and it has been a miracle drug for me. I have really bad hormonal acne and it started when I was 24. I was on the birth control Yasmin and I couldn't take the constant stomach aches and hormones with that pill. So my doctor suggested Spiro. I stopped Yasmin after 6 months and started Spiro immediately. My face never broke out from changing over so I didn't have an initial breakout. I take 100mgs everyday and never have cystic acne or anything really bad. My pimples are so small and actually go away within 2-3 days. Around that time of the month I do break out, but not like I used to before Spiro. I did something bad and tried birth control again. This time it was Ortho-Cyclen. Terrible mistake! Terrible birth control pill! I still was taking Spiro and I'm sure my skin would of been way worse had I not been on Spiro. I stopped my BCP about 2 months ago and my skin has been getting better and better each day. Still on Spiro and I hope I never have to go off of it. It's the only thing that has ever worked for my acne. I've tried many products, doctor prescribed products. I do use the restroom alot more but I drink alot water and coffee, so. I would say give this a chance if you're fed up with your hormonal acne.
Spironolactone was a miracle for my chin hormonal acne. But it didn't start out that way. Initially I got severe head aches, that would not go away. I started out on one 25 mg. tablet. Initially I was afraid to continue the pill because of my headache. But what I did was cut the small pill into 4 peices, and spread the four peaces out equally through the day. Eventually I built up to a half in the morning and the remaining half in the evening. Now I take the full 25 mg a day. I tried 4 different types of birth control, but one made me feel sick, the others that were lower estrogen made me spot everyday all day. I ended up going back on the pill Ortho Tri Cyclen AKA Generic Norgestimate and Ethinyl Estradiol. And I took the Birth Control at night, so that when I got queezy, I would be asleep. You have to be on the pill while on Sprironolactone other wise you will have bleeding. So the magic formula for my super clear less oily face attributed to hormonal acne, (I am 44 years old) is the 25 mg of Spironolactone, and the generic Ortho Tri Cyclin. I have no queeziness or headaches. Prior I tried Minocycline and Tetrocycline, and many topicals. They only helped temporarily. And not very well. And they should not be used long term. I highly recommend this, and detailed my experience hoping it will help you. I am healthy and walk at least 4 days a week, I am thin and don't smoke. I think you have to be in decent health to be on the Spiro, because it can lower blood pressure. They also did a blood test on me to check my potasium level. God Bless.
I wish I had discovered spironolactone much sooner as I would have saved myself time, money and low self-confidence.
As soon as I turned 45, perimenopause came out full on and it was as if a big switch went off in my body. Literally overnight, my acne popped up on the chin and jawline, especially the left side of my chin. For about a year and a half, I tried however many topical creams/solutions without much success. A doctor suggested spironolactone and I was reluctant to go that route because I wanted to avoid using drugs.
When it was obvious my acne was getting worse, I asked for a Rx for spironolactone. I did my research about the drug and the side effects so I was prepared.
I have been taking spiro for 7 weeks and my skin has improved considerably. I'm not 100% clear but I'm almost there with pre-acne skin. I did have a few new breakouts here and there but nothing serious. Apparently it's not unusual for some people to experience a big breakout at first with this drug. Fortunately, that didn't happen to me.
In addition to taking this drug, it's important to maintain a good skin care regime to deal with the existing acne. I use Cerave hydrating cleansing lotion to wash in the am and pm, followed by Paula's Choice 2% BHA lotion, Cerave lotion (the cream was too heavy and I suspect it caused the cystic acne on my forehead) and Vichy sunscreen during the day.
A good sunscreen is essential to help the skin heal, especially with the hyper-pigmentation. The spiro seems to be helping with the healing of the hyper-pigmentation and my cheeks are not so red any more. (i have rosacea)
I have not worn makeup during these several weeks as I want my skin to breathe and heal as quick as possible. (I can still wear eyemakeup and lipstick/gloss but I avoid any foundation/powder)
As for the side effects, they have been minimal. My blood pressure has decreased slightly but that's to be expected as this drug is prescribed for hypertension. It is also a diuretic so I'm peeing a bit more and I find I'm drinking more water too.
I'm on 100 mg/day and this dose works for me. My doctor wouldn't recommend any more than 100 mg/day and this seems to be the ideal dose to see results. (again, individual results may vary as with the dose)
I was taking 1 x 25mg four times a day and this made me extremely tired. When I took 50 mg once in the am and pm, the fatigue went away.
My cycle seems to be okay (this drug can cause irregular periods) although I'm still monitoring that. (I'm not on bcp and not needed in my case)
This drug can cause birth defects so use proper birth control.
Watch your potassium and salt intake as this drug can increase potassium levels in the blood and get blood work done regularly to make sure you're in the normal range.
If you're suffering from hormonal acne and don't want to go on Accutane, then spironolactone maybe a good alternative. It's working wonders for me, although I'll need to continue taking the drug to avoid the acne from returning, I'm willing to do so. (provided there aren't great long term risks)
Okay, first off I'd like to say that I actually created my account to review this product. I would like to provide some guidance and hope for people who have hormonal acne and/or hypothyroidism.
Since taking Spironolactone for 9 days--this is my review!
I have hypothyroidism and I get a few of the symptoms of this thyroid disease but thankfully I learned how to eat to "please" my thyroid, if you will, so I don't struggle with my weight--I'm actually on the very small/petite side. (I know weight gain is one of the biggest complaints of hypo--and I did battle that for a couple years--and won.) I DO, however, struggle with the skin issues. I was first diagnosed with hypothyroidism when I was 18 years old and I began having adult acne around age 21. (Acne is also a symptom of hypothyroidism) The acne wasn't severe at the time and hardly noticeable to the naked eye. It felt more like most of my pores were clogged. I could feel the tiny bumps under my skin and I began suffering from anxiety--which was unrelated to the bumps--and PICKING so badly it would look like I had awful skin lesions.
I'm 25 now--and all these years I've been prescribed antibiotics left and right and off and on (by choice, of course) and they never worked for long so they'd always bump me up to a stronger antibiotic-- like most people experience. I refuse to take accutane--I prefer a MOSTLY natural lifestyle (this includes products I use/foods that I eat) and this medication's side effects scare me! So, in accordance with my healthier lifestyle, I stopped taking the antibiotics (doxycycline at the time) around Jan/Feb of this year.
Although I was breaking out while taking the meds, after I stopped I BROKE OUT SO BADLY. (To be expected, I suppose) I had cystic acne! Something I had never had before. Not only were ALL my pores back to being clogged with the tiny bumps but I also had painful LARGE bumps underneath my skin that would never have a "head." I never had experienced actual pimples before in this degree. I decided to wait it out a few months to see if my body would normalize after being off antibiotics like it had a couple times before, although I had never broken out this badly in my life. Needless to say, come the end of June I was tired of waiting it out. It never improved--it seemed as though I'd gone from simple bumps to cystic acne because of meddling with antibiotics! My acne seemed as though it evolved into a hormonal problem. Perhaps it was linked to my hormones and the hypothyroidism--but my blood-work was always "normal"--or so they say. Who knows?
Anyway, I went to my dermatologist and told him I was tired of antibiotics and that I was looking for other options. He told me to use the MIA 2 Clarisonic brush (it'll be here tomorrow! So excited), take Spironolactone 100mg daily, and also use an RX facewash with sodium, sulfacetamide, and sulfur made by Stratus. I've only been using the Spiro religiously--and although he prescribed 100mg a day I rotate my doses because of AWFUL fatigue. I decided to take Spiro at night because it makes me so dog-gone tired I seriously can't stand to stay awake! My prescription bottle actually says to take it in the morning! How strange? So for 2-3 nights in a row I'll take the full 100mg dose each night. Then I break the pill in half and take 1/2 pill for 2 nights in a row.
~*~~*~ My skin has improved so much in only 9 days! I kid you not--my face is almost completely clear! No bumps and the dry skin flakes where the large and small bumps used to be are drying out and washing away. My complexion is nearly flawless. People are ALREADY commenting on my complexion and telling me how my face has improved and also that my skin is pretty even though I haven't mentioned this treatment at all! I can't even see any scarring! My pores have shrunk back down to being small--as if this acne never happened in the first place! This is seriously a miracle prescription!~*~~*~
There are downsides, however. I have read that Spiro may aggravate your thyroid even if you have no disorder and you should get your blood checked every 3 months while you take it. Since I do have hypothyroidism, I battle fatigue as it is, but since taking Spiro I seriously KNOCK OUT for 9-12 hours a night. I normally don't sleep this much! I need to make sure my thyroid levels are okay and haven't changed while taking this medication and I really truly hope it's alright for me because this is seriously the only option left!
This medication works by blocking the production of androgens in a woman's body. Androgens are usually found in a woman's body in small amounts, but when there is excess production of these hormones a woman may experience hormonal acne and hirsutism--both of which are treated by Spironolactone. Try it! Your hormonal acne will cease to exist and you will be so happy you did!
I will update if anything changes! Everyone deserves to feel comfortable in their own skin. Good luck to you all!
This is pretty much the first review I've ever written on a product/makeup/medication, so sorry if it's not up to par. What I will say is, for over three years now Ive been battling severe cystic acne on my back, chest, and face. My mom and I thought it was a staph infection at first! I was on countless rounds of doxycycline, and it made no difference...in fact probably made it worse. It wasn't until about a month and a half ago, a third dermatologist looked at me and said, "yeah, that's hormonal." She prescribed me Spiro in late May. I started on it May 20th. I am now a little over a month and a half with Spiro, and Reclipsen birth control. I stopped taking Doxycycline a couple days ago because in my honest opinion it doesn't do a thing for acne, and it's so damaging to the liver, especially after taking it on and off for three years. So far, the symptoms are excessive thirst (which can be easily remedied and I don't mind it since all I need is another glass of water, lol), frequent urination and dry skin on occasion. Small side effects like that are DEFINITELY worth clear skin. As far as the effectiveness, I will have to say I need to give it more time. The first three weeks I didn't notice anything, but now that it's at six weeks, my acne has flared up a bit. I'm hoping this is just my body getting used to the medicine. My derm also did tell me that it takes AT LEAST 12 weeks (3 months) to start working, so I'm taking her word for it and hoping for the best. I am rating this a three for now because I have noticed less blackheads on the nose, and I am optimistic based on the many other reviews I have seen so far. People have basically said the same thing I'm saying now: give it time even if it gets worse. I think after three months of this I will write another review and give you all an update on how it's going for me. Some people say that it takes 3-6 months for you to even see a difference, so I'm going on that and doing some research on the side. I've found that a lot of dairy products can cause flare ups in acne as well, so for the next month I will try to cut that out as well as continue to take the medication. I'll also admit, I had a few mental breakdowns in the past couple of weeks because I thought it would never get better, and it was starting to get worse, but thats not helping, ladies. So remember that before you burst into tears of frustration. Stress makes it worse, so keep those levels down as well. You're going to need massive amounts of patience and determination, time, and an open mind, because Accutane would be the next step for most after failed attempts with Spiro. All I can say at this point is, wish me luck and I will keep in touch. Thanks xxx
Have been on 50 mg spironolactone for a month now. Have not had any immediate improvement in cystic acne like some people are saying. I have been battling cystic acne for about a year or so now around my chin/mouth and general acne for six years. Have noticed a decrease in oil and blackheads since starting spironolactone! Haven't noticed any weight changes, but have been thirsty a lot and having to pee quite frequently. I can become dizzy at some points, but nothing that is not manageable. I am hoping by the end of next month I will have some improvement to my cystic acne. Keeping positive and waiting for skin that I don't have to hide with makeup or be shy about in public! Also using this medication with .1% Tretinoin cream, which has been tricky because my cheeks and jaw line have been dry from this combination.
I am in my late 30's and have been battling acne for over twenty years. Back in my teens I had terrible cystic acne, after two rounds of accutane my skin was better however I still had consistent breakouts. I have been on every antibiotic available and retin-a; nothing worked until two years ago when my dermatologist put me on spironolactone. At first my acne was slightly worse but after about two months or so my skin cleared up. This is the first time in over twenty years that I have has clear skin. I still have the occasional breakout but nothing in comparison to what I have had to deal with in the past. People now comment on how clear my skin is. I highly recommend this to anyone who has tried all other options and still breaks out consistently.
Hi I just was recently put on Spironolactone no 50mg x2 a day . I've been on it for 1month and I had such a bad breakout the worst ever !! All I do is cry !! My face is much worst then when I started . Did anyone breakout badly in the 1st month .how long before did you start to see results I am sooooo depressed I'm hoping that this works and should I hang in there with the meds . I feel sooo bad I don't even want to go outside
I am 32 yrs. old, and have been battling acne on and off for the last 10 yrs. I've tried everything from tetracycline, to minocycline, to birth control, to every topical cream that exists. over time, as many medication users know, they lose their effect and they stop working, and that's exactly what happened. I had (up until a week ago) cystic acne right along my jawline and neck, which is clearly hormonal acne. oddly enough, just on the left side. my right side was only 2 maybe 3 cysts. they were so painful I had to take Advil numerous times to take down the swelling and inflammation, and they would turn into tiny blood clots within the cyst, which took weeks if not months to disappear. needles to say the awful scars that came along with it. i tried Accutane about 7 yrs. ago, and had a horrible panic attack that lasted 4 days and had to be on valium, so my dr immediately took me off of it, and i was back to square one.i attempted to take Diane 35, which heard great reviews for acne, but the migraines were becoming unbearable, and was even hospitalized numerous times. the cost for the bcp, along with migraine meds took me to about $150/month which was getting ridiculous. and always was in panic if I had migraine pills on me or I ran out of them, which gave me so much anxiety. diane was great for my skin, it def helped, but the migraines so bad so I had to stop them after 1.5 yrs. i am now on migraine prevention medication. I do want to mention that I LOVE fashion and makeup and getting all pretty. so aside from the pain involved in having such big cysts, it took a huge toll on my self esteem. finally, being at my last resort, and after developing a high bp condition, I approached my dr in tears practically, until she suggested to take spiro. which was a two fold, cuz in the same time it lowered my bp. I had a horrible initial breakout, again not sure if it was the meds or just my acne was getting really bad until the meds started to work. my dr had started me off on 25 mg, feb 1, 2013. and after a week I noticed my skin/hair was a lot drier, but still breaking out in cysts. after a week I upped my dose o my own to 50mg, and then went back to her 3 weeks later and told her the meds weren't working. she upped them to 75 after 3 weeks, and about a week after that I increased it on my own to 100 mg/day. I read many reviews that said ppl take anywhere from 100-200 for acne, and so I knew I was still in the safe zone. i went back after about weeks and told her I increased it and she authorized it. i as a little nervous b/c my bp was dropping pretty low, but i didn't really care. I was determined to have spiro work for me. the main side effects I was having was peeing a little bit more, not much maybe 2-3 times more, the low bp, dizzy and thirsty. they all disappeared after a month. month 2, still breaking out in painful cysts. I read a lot of reviews and many of them said I takes sometimes up to 5 mos to start working, and to just be patient. and so I did. I was persistent, and still nothing after second-third month. I am entering month 4 (may) and just had a follow-up with my dr, and said I can not under any means increase it due to my low bp/ so I've been steady on 100 mg now for 3 mos and only now, 14 weeks in, I am starting to notice a mild diff in my skin tone. its a lot smoother, no bumps, drier, and so far no new breakouts. im just trying to clear the cysts from the last few weeks. I am still trying to be patient, and hopeful that this will be the med that will finally break this horrendous vicious cycle of acne for me, and clear my horrible skin the way it did for so many others.