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Accutane ruined my eyes

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  • #16
    I took accutane as a teenager for a few months, though my acne wasn't as severe. I'm now over 40 so that was a long time ago.

    What I can say is that accutane appears to work the same way a common hairloss treatment (propecia, finasteride) works: by blocking the conversion of testosterone to its more potent by-product, DHT. Excessive DHT in hair follicles causes excess oil to be pumped out by the sebaceous glands; hence if you block the DHT, you dry up the oil glands, including both hair follicles and skin pores.

    Completely blocking DHT, an important sex hormone, for extended periods can in some people lead to serious health problems. The internet is littered with such tales of woe unfortunately.

    For anyone who has ever taken accutane and still experiencing any kind of issue, be it dry eyes, fatigue, brain fog, depression etc ( i speak from experience) really needs to see their doctor and get a hormone panel done. Over at www.propeciahelp.com you will find stories of many guys undertaking testosterone treatment to restore their DHT levels to a more healthier state. It can take quite a while also.

    The drug companies have a lot to answer for...

    Best
    Jamie

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    • #17
      Its very hard to know whether accutane is the culprit.It probably contibuted to your dry eye but i doubt it was the sole cause.The side effects are most potent when actually taking the drug.Dr L says that the glands of accutane patients are "most certainly clogged".Im not sure myself but i guess ill believe him.he knows way more about dry eye than i do


      Originally posted by fundryeyes View Post
      I took Accutane 25 years ago. It essentially destroys your oil glands. My opt. said " it wouldn't take 25 years for Accutane to do this to you. How does she know ? They don't know a whole lot about causes unfortunately. When I took Accutane the derm. told me it would knock out 90% of the oil production. So, we are left with 10% which will diminish over the years. Bingo ! i'm a 45 yr old male with a disease of post menepausal women. The opt. told me the oil in my eye is milky and inconsistent. I have no blepharitis or any external evidence of MGD. Just milky oil and the glands are not plugged.
      Unfortunately there is no way of proving Accutane is the cause. I would sue their pants off if I could prove this. I don't think they have pants anyways as the Crohn's and colitis people have removed those by sueing them. Maybe I could get their shirt ;-)

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      • #18
        Looking forward for an update, Ronnie
        Last edited by Andrey; 20-May-2011, 17:58.

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        • #19
          So I stuck with the crazy controlled diet program of avoiding sugar, gluten, alcohol and caffeine for 100 days and there was zero improvement for my eyes.

          Subsequent to that program, a few weeks ago I hit the master cleanse which consists of no food and just consuming water, freshly squeezed lemon juice, cayanne pepper powder and syrup that is mostly maple syrup. After the first two days my eyes felt a little better but then they got much worse for days 3-8, which is when most people who do the cleanse talk about how amazing they feel. Well, my left eye got bright red and I had no more energy and did not feel clear headed at all -I still felt congested.

          After trying so many crazy detoxes and cleanses over the past decade, I am convinced that for people like me, who took Accutane, which ruined their lives, controlled food consumption is clearly not the answer.

          There is research available from different institutes, demonstrating the positive link between levels of androgen and meibomian gland functioning. It is believed that Accutane can shrink sebaceous glands. However, high levels of androgen can enlarge sebaceous glands; this is why body builders can develop acne. I have lived in misery for 14 years because of my eyes, post Accutane. I have appointments established with a number of different doctors over the next two months (I'm in Canada where the brutal public systems takes forever to see specialists), including an ophthalmologist, dermotologist, and GI specialist. I am assuming more of the same feedback: no one has a clue why my eyes suddenly became extremely irritated, my skin became super dry, I became lactose intolerant and my tongue became discolored after taking Accutane. If more of this useless feedback materializes, the next step will be to try androgen and see if any eye relief can materialize.

          Has anyone else tried androgren to relieve dry eye pain?

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          • #20
            Hi Ronnie,

            I can tell you that I have heard that androgen therapy/testosterone therapy can be beneficial for menopausal women who experience dry eye. I do not believe that it is as effective for men? Maybe someone can shed more light on this.

            I would try a google search for 'males with dry eye and androgen therapy'.

            Best of health to you.

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            • #21
              RE: testosterone for dry eye

              There has been a lot of talk regarding the use of testosterone for dry eye. You could search on DEZ and they'll be threads going back years.

              One doctor, Dr. Charles Connor at the South College of Optometry, tested compounded testosterone cream for dry eyes. He uses a pharmacy in Memphis (People's Custom Rx (they have a website)... maybe call them and speak to a pharmacist about how it's compounded. Then you'll need a compounding pharmacy near you to do the same. BTW, it's a prescription drug so you will need a doctor to okay it and write the prescription.)

              I tried testosterone cream on my eyelids but it didn't help.

              There's also another doctor, Dr. David Sullivan at Harvard, who developed an androgen drop for dry eyes. The rights were sold to Allergan and they're taking their pretty time developing/testing it before it's available to anyone.

              I also think that Leiter's Pharmacy in California has an androgen-type drop (DHEA).

              I also tried compounded DHEA cream that I rubbed on my tummy. It was a prescription that I got in the States. It didn't help either.

              But there are possibilities for you to try.
              Last edited by spmcc; 18-Sep-2011, 18:23. Reason: added info

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              • #22
                Thanasis and Ronnie have either of you tried serum (tears made from your own blood)? It has helped me a lot. I still have bad days/moments, but it is generally better than it use to be.

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                • #23
                  Borderline-low testosterone and progesterone levels are definitely causative for men with dry eyes. I was one of those men! :-)

                  I believe that it is really estrogen overload that is the main catalyst in chronic hormone imbalances. In an unhealthy body simply too much testosterone is being converted to estrogen via aromatase, an enzyme responsible for the conversion process.

                  Factors known to increase aromatase activity include age, obesity, insulin, and alcohol.
                  Jamie

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                  • #24
                    I'm here, again!

                    Hello guys! Thanasis here! Forgot my password so I created a new account. I thought it would be good to make an update because I haven't been here for months!!

                    My DES worsened A LOT during the next months and the year was messed up. I had difficulties at school and I couldn't focus on my h/w with DES.

                    I decided to visit my kind-of-thoughtless eye doctor once more so that I could eventually convience him to prescribe me something more than artificial tears. After a looong appointment and looots of grumpy talking he gave me a gel! Yes, ladies and gentlemen! I tried it yesterday and today. It feels better than the artificial tears but still not very effective. I woke up with my eyelids not so stuck together and I'm already feeling very optimistic. I'm really looking forward to be ordering Refresh P.M. because I've heard lots of good things about it.

                    One thing I cannot understand is the difference between an ointment and a gel. Do they work differently?

                    As you all hear on the new, Greece is going from bad to worse, who knows if we go bankrupt (actually we kind of already are) and the economy is messed up. That means I can't visit another eye doctor for now. I'm saving up 'till I get the chance to visit one here in Salonika who said on his webpage that he can order punctal plugs!!
                    Does anyone know what the average cost would be?

                    Originally posted by Trac View Post
                    Thanasis and Ronnie have either of you tried serum (tears made from your own blood)? It has helped me a lot. I still have bad days/moments, but it is generally better than it use to be.
                    No, I haven't. How do you get them? Who takes your blood to make them?

                    Thanks a lot!
                    Thanasis

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                    • #25
                      I took Accutane as a teenager as well, probably close to 20 years ago. I never stopped to consider before this week whether or not that was the start of my DES problems. In my case, I mixed in enough extended-wear contact lens abuse to make it pretty much impossible to tell. I understand Accutane now is (or was) off the market in the US. Problems with it were already legendary when I took it. The possible side effects were so severe for girls that I remember a classmate of mine not being allowed to take it because her parents wouldn't agree to her going on birth control as well at such a young age. Interesting trade-off now: Accutane certainly knocked out my acne, with no residual scarring or any real trace visible today. But it certainly couldn't have helped the current situation with my eyes.

                      Good luck with managing your DES - I'm in the same boat here in my early 30's.
                      -John
                      Winston-Salem, NC

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by ThanasisVC2 View Post

                        I decided to visit my kind-of-thoughtless eye doctor once more so that I could eventually convience him to prescribe me something more than artificial tears. After a looong appointment and looots of grumpy talking he gave me a gel! Yes, ladies and gentlemen! I tried it yesterday and today.)
                        Thanasis,

                        I also started just yesterday on a gel (Genteal). It's been less than 24 hours, but so far I'm a big fan. Lasted 4-5 hours between applications yesterday vs. the drops which I seemed to have to put in every 10-15 minutes. So far no stinging / pain with the gel either, which I was really afraid of.

                        Again, good luck!
                        -John
                        Winston-Salem, NC

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by jchcollins View Post
                          Interesting trade-off now: Accutane certainly knocked out my acne, with no residual scarring or any real trace visible today. But it certainly couldn't have helped the current situation with my eyes.
                          Thank you! That's what I'm really trying to say. Accutane indeed helped me get rid of acne without any scars at all! But the side effects! Argh- they are so many and serious.

                          Originally posted by jchcollins View Post
                          Good luck with managing your DES - I'm in the same boat here in my early 30's.
                          Thanks! Glad to hear someone's in the same boat as me! It gives me courage. But it's also sad to know that you are going through this tough condition! Wish you the best, too!

                          Originally posted by jchcollins View Post
                          I also started just yesterday on a gel (Genteal). It's been less than 24 hours, but so far I'm a big fan. Lasted 4-5 hours between applications yesterday vs. the drops which I seemed to have to put in every 10-15 minutes. So far no stinging / pain with the gel either, which I was really afraid of.
                          Cool! My gel is called Thilogel, it's probably available in Greece only or perhaps it's under a different name outside Greece. I am sooo in love with it so far as well! The difference when I woke up was indeed noticable. And no stinging either for me! It's so nice to really see that yours & people's condition gets better especially when you are on the same boat!

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                          • #28
                            Hey guys, I've posted in this thread a few times in detail since last spring. I just posted a detailed updated on another post that you may find interesting. The link to that post is: http://www.dryeyezone.com/talk/showt...7996#post67996

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                            • #29
                              Has anyones eyes improved over time since taking accutane?

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                              • #30
                                Yeah, mine has gotten better. It felt like they got better after I had a antibiotic cure (azitromax). Now they are close to normal but after every shower they are pretty much ruined for the rest of the day.

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