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Accutane is a powerful drug for treating severe nodular acne.

Before You Go

Questions to ask your doctor:

  • Will Accutane help my acne?
  • What dietary changes will I need to make while taking Accutane?

Pre-procedure prep for Accutane: You will be unable to donate blood for a month before beginning treatment with Accutane. Some physicians require that their patients undergo a psychological examination as well. Women of childbearing age will have to take two negative pregnancy tests before being cleared for the drug, and you may be required to use birth control while taking Accutane.

What To Expect

Accutane is taken orally in pill form. Your doctor will prescribe the correct dosage based on your body weight. As a general rule, patients receive between 0.5 and 1.0 mg for every 2.2 pounds they weigh, so if you tip the scale at 100 pounds, you'll be instructed to take somewhere between 20 and 40 mg of Accutane per day (part in the morning, and the rest at night).

Each pill should be swallowed with a full glass of water to help the body absorb it into the bloodstream. Wait 10 minutes before lying down.

Who should do it: Accutane can only be prescribed by a licensed physician. Speak with a dermatologist if you think Accutane is the right treatment for your skin.

Duration: Accutane is taken twice a day over the course of 15 to 20 weeks. Your doctor will be able to create a customized plan for your skin.

How Painful Is It?

Accutane may cause moderate to severe discomfort, including dry eyes (making contacts practically impossible to wear), cracked or sore lips, flaking skin, nosebleeds, and bleeding or swollen gums. Accutane can also cause the skin on your palms and soles of your feet to peel.

Find experts who offer Accutane near you