What Are The Benefits Of Spironolactone
Spironolactone helps with skin and hair conditions that are caused by androgens including:
- Hormonal acne for women in their 20s and 30s
- Acne during the perimenopause
- Acne caused by HRT or Testosterone as part of HRT
- Female pattern hair loss
Spironolactone may be used alone or in combination with other treatments for acne.
How Spironolactone Changed My Life
- By Claire Carusillo
When I got a little bitty goalie that secretes hormones delicately shoved into my uterus last October at an OBGYN practice with the name Downtown Women, I finally felt fully grown. Minutes later, however, a more acute feeling surfaced, one that can really only be described as the pain of a million little tiny cheapo earrings pricking my guts. When it hit, I was shopping on the second floor of a fast fashion chain near the gynecologist for a dress to wear to a wedding. I lay down in the dressing room, finally infertile, and almost ready to die.
The pain subsided. A day later, I felt free. A week later, I got sexually rejected by no less than 10 University of Michigan frat boys at that very wedding. A month later, I got my first IUD-related cystic pimple. Two months after that, I still had it. Then I got a bunch more.
Nothing really helped. That is, until I resigned myself to the fact that no matter how much goo I put on my face, this problem was internal. Not in a spiritual way. I mean, like, hormonally speaking. According to my legion of anonymous teens, there was one solution that could work, if I was patient. It was called spironolactone, and I couldnt pronounce it.
So it probably definitely went like that, and now, off-label Spiro use is all the rage.
Here’s Everything You Need To Know About Spironolactone
Medically reviewed by Aimee Paik, MD
When it comes to battling hormonal acne, believe me when I say Ive been there. Ive shot out of bed in the morning, headed straight to the mirror, and inspected my chin to see if any of my painful, cystic pimples have gone down . Ive taken my foundation everywhere I go, in case I need to touch up a caking spot on my face midday. Ive gone down the path of vitamin supplements and acne-fighting foods in an attempt to heal my hormones naturally. Ive been there, and I know how debilitating hormonal acne can be in your everyday life.
If you feel like youve tried every acne-fighting topical to try and treat those painful, inflamed pimples, it might be time to talk to your doctor about trying an oral medication called spironolactone. Previously used as a blood pressure medication, spironolactone is the latest treatment being used to balance hormones and calm inflammation without too many side effects.
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Dosage For Edema In People With Certain Liver Or Kidney Problems
For this purpose, your doctor will likely have you start with an Aldactone dosage of 100 mg per day. They may have you take this in one single dose or divide it into two or three doses depending on what they think will work best for you.
While taking Aldactone for edema, the dosage may range from 25 to 200 mg daily. This may be taken as one single dose or divided into multiple doses. It depends on what they think will work best for you and any side effects you may have.
If you have cirrhosis, youll start taking Aldactone in a hospital. The drug may cause problems with the blood levels of fluids and electrolytes in people with cirrhosis. This can cause neurological side effects such as confusion, hand tremors, and, rarely, coma. By having you in the hospital when you start taking Aldactone, your doctor will be able to monitor you for these side effects.
When Is Spironolactone Recommended By Doctors At Belgravia Dermatology
Your skin will be assessed during your initial consultation. Your doctor may suggest Spironolactone to you if you have hormonal acne that does not improve with conventional treatment. Spironolactone may also be recommended if Roaccutane has not worked or if acne has come back after a course of Roaccutane.
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Spironolactone Is Safe For Long
Sure, the everyday side effects of spironolactone are minimal, but what about the long-term risks of being on it? Breathe a sigh of relief, because it falls under “very safe” on the spectrum of medications. Although it’s not associated with cancers in humans, both Dr. Zeichner and Dr. Shah note that spironolactone does have a black box warning because high doses have caused tumors in rats.
However, if you are planning on getting pregnant, you shouldn’t take spironolactone. “Theoretically it can cause birth defects, so you should use contraception if you are on it,” says Dr. Zeichner.
Will Acne Come Back If You Stop Taking Spironolactone
According to Dr. Paik, spironolactone is a medication that shouldn’t be used alone to treat acne, but should instead be used in conjunction with topical treatments. Ideally, if you stop spironolactone, the topical medications would be sufficient to control your acne, says Dr. Paik. But if you are using spironolactone alone and you stop taking it, your acne would likely come back within days to weeksspironolactone has a half-life of 17 hours, and it is completely metabolized out of your system within a few weeks.
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How Do You Know If Spironolactone Worked
If your acne is hormonal, you may notice it coming back a few weeks after you stop taking spironolactone. Generally, it should come back to baseline within a month.
However, suppose your acne doesnt improve at all despite being on the medication for quite some time. In that case, there may be other factors involved like genetics that contribute to your acne, and you may need other treatments like Accutane.
What Are The Side Effects Of Spironolactone
Side-effects of Spironolactone include :
- Passing urine more frequently for the first few weeks 29%
- Mestrual irregularities either heavy mesntrual cycles, irregularity in cycles, spotting, discomfort 22%. Sometimes it is necessary to add the combined oral contraceptive pill to help these side effects.
- Breast tenderness 17%
- Elevated potassium levels in the blood 0.75%
- Feminisation of a male baby it is important to avoid pregnancy while on Spironolactone as it can cause a male baby to become feminised by blocking androgens
A lot of the symptoms may occur early on, when Spironolactone is first started. Many side effects improve with time as the body adjusts to the medication. Sometimes it is necessary to star the combined oral contraceptive pill to control the menstrual side effects.
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Your Period Cramps May Get Worse
I’ve had borderline debilitating cramps every month since I started getting my period in middle school, and I didn’t think it was possible for them to get worse until I experienced my first period on spironolactone. Dr. Shah says that it’s possible that these intensified cramps could be caused by hormonal changes from taking the drug. My cycle also lasts longer, too. . But what I haven’t dealt with is spotting, which is a common side effect of spironolactone.
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Appointments For Acne And Spironolactone
If you are interested in discussing Spironolactone as a treatment for acne, then please contact us on 0121 285 4540 to organise an appointment or to make an enquiry .
Medications are only prescribed during a consultation once your doctor has an adequate knowledge of your health and condition. A particular medication is only prescribed if the medication is suitable for a person in their current situation.
We ask that you do not assume that a particular medication will be prescribed at a consultation, as this will be down to the medical assessment made by your doctor. Further, we also do not necessarily continue prescriptions for medications you may have been prescribed elsewhere including from overseas or from online providers as the same criteria for prescribing are applied.
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Can You Take Spironolactone While Pregnant
More data is necessary before we can definitely make the call, but for now, the safest bet is to avoid taking spironolactone altogether while pregnant. Spironolactone should not be taken while pregnant due to potential adverse effects on the developing baby. Based on data from animal studies, oral spironolactone may interfere with the development of primary sex characteristics in male fetuses.
Should I Take Spironolactone For Acne
When you hear the word acne, you probably think of the facial varietybut acne can crop up in many different places all over the body, and the solution isnt as simple as slathering yourself in your favorite OTC pimple cream or investing in expensive skincare.
If you have severe facial acne or acne that affects your back, chest, buttocks, or arms, you may need to see a dermatologist to get your breakouts under control. And if youre female, you may be prescribed a common blood pressure medication called Aldactone for treatment of acne.
What does a blood pressure medication have to do with treating acneand why is it typically only prescribed to women? Heres everything you need to know about using spironolactone for acne.
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Are There Any Oral Antibiotics That Should Not Be Used With Spironolactone Or That Require Additional Caution
Spironolactone has been used safely and effectively in combination with oral antibiotics including tetracyclines, erythromycin, and amoxicillin., Trimethoprim-sulfa-methoxazole has been found to be just as effective as oxytetracycline in the treatment of AV, and is sometimes used to effectively treat cases of AV that are poorly responsive to other oral antibiotics. In evaluating a group of patients with AV treated with spironolactone in combination with other agents, among three patients who used a combination of spironolactone and TMP-SMX, one patient experienced marked improvement and the other two achieved complete response. Another patient experienced hypotension, which disappeared after one week of cessation of spironolactone.
Are There Any Research Projects Being Under Taken On Spironolactone
A study is currently underway at the University of Southampton looking at how good Spironolactone is compared to a dummy pill . More information on the study can be found here. Local test centres include Epson & St Helier and University Hospital Birmingham. The report of this study will be out in Oct 2021.
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Saving On Spironolactone Costs
For a one-month supply of 25 milligram generic Aldactone tablets, the average patient pays about $28. With a SingleCare discount card, you might be able to pay less than $7.
Other popular prescription topical antibiotics like clindamycin, topical retinoids such as tazarotene, and oral medications like doxycycline or Accutane . Some dermatologists recommend birth control pills, especially if your breakouts revolve around your menstrual cycle. Oral contraceptives can regulate the flow of hormones that affect oil production in your skin its often helpful for women with polycystic ovarian syndrome, or PCOS, which usually causes an overabundance in male hormones.
There are a few over-the-counter acne medications, too, like benzoyl peroxide , Differin Gel, and salicylic acid cleanser or moisturizer. Most prescription acne treatments come with some side effects and not all are compatible with every persons lifestyle. If youre struggling to win the war against acne, make an appointment with your dermatologist for advice on which treatment might be best for you.
Were On A Mission To Make Skincare Accessible
Curology was founded in 2013 by Dr. David Lorschter, MD, a board-certified dermatologist. Its simple: you tell us about your skin, and one of our dermatology providers will consult with you about your skincare routine. If Curology is right for you, well prescribe you a Custom Formula with a mix of ingredients chosen for your unique needs.
Curology is free to startyoull get a Custom Formula, plus any of our recommended skincare products, for just $4.95 * to cover shipping and handling. Thats a full skincare routine designed by dermatologists and sent straight to your door.
The best part? Curology is custom-tailored to you. That means we can tweak your Custom Formula over time, and you can always update whats in your box. So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and start your Curology free trial now.
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How Does Spironolactone Work
Spironolactone works by blocking the action of a hormone called aldosterone, which is used by the body to retain water and sodium.
Aldosterone is produced in the adrenal glands. People with high blood pressure, low potassium levels and other health conditions often have overly high levels of aldosterone. Aldosterone can also contribute to water retention in people with conditions such as kidney failure.
Taking Aldactone With Food
You can take Aldactone with or without food. But you should take the drug consistently for every dose.
This means that if you start taking Aldactone with food, you should take the drug with food for the rest of your doses. And if you take Aldactone without food, you should keep taking it without food for your other doses.
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When Should You Stop Using The Medication
If youre using spironolactone for acne, its suggested that you stop taking the medication after your skin clears up. Continuing to use spironolactone daily will not keep your acne away. It can lead to other health problems like irregular menstrual cycles or breast enlargement in women and man boobs in men.
If your acne returns a few weeks after you stop taking spironolactone, it might not be related to the drug, and another treatment will likely be necessary.
How Long Does Spironolactone Take To Work For Acne
The British Association of Dermatologists claim thatmost women find that their acne starts to improve after about 3 months of treatment.
From what Ive read online from other women taking spironolactone for acne, this seems about average. However, its important to remember that everyone reacts differently to medication and the length of time taken to see results will vary from person to person.
Regardless, its definitely no overnight fix, so you will need to come armed with some patience.
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How To Prevent Acne Flare Ups
Are you looking for a hormonal acne treatment that can end your breakouts once and for all? Learn whats causing your flare-ups and how to prevent them.
Hormonal acne is a challenge many people face, but its especially prevalent among women. If youre wondering how we got so lucky, the answer lies in the complicated nature of our female hormones and androgen levels. Every month, the balance of our estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone changes. Then, theres the fact that our hormones experience some big changes as we go through menopause.
Even though we ladies are more likely to experience hormonal acne than men, that doesnt mean were guaranteed to have it or that we cant do things to avoid it. For those of us with mild to severe acne symptoms as adults, heres what to know about what may be causing our acne flare-ups and how to prevent them with hormonal acne treatment and lifestyle changes.
So Did It Work For Me
Like most medications for acne, spironolactone also doesnt work immediately. I noticed a decrease in the number and size of spots I had after six weeks, but Id still get some spots during my period.
Around the three-month mark, I stopped by my local drugstore to pick up more blemish concealer in preparation for the typical monthly breakout around my period. Yet, it proved to be an unnecessary purchase: I literally had two spots that week, instead of around 20.
Three months after starting spironolactone, my acne had vanished. All that remained were a few scars.
Since my mid-20s, my biggest breakout area had been my upper back and shoulders, which disappeared within three months.
But after four months of spironolactone, I also no longer had to fret about pimples emerging on my chin and cheeks every month when the cramps came.
My skin was smooth, significantly less oily, and even free from the blackheads that used to decorate the pores on my nose.
I even triumphantly stashed my charcoal and mud masks under the bathroom sink, as I no longer woke up to red or blotchy skin.
Having clear skin for the first time in my adult life quickly altered my self-perception. I stopped attacking my every flaw and held my head a little higher while walking down the street.
As my back was no longer inflamed, I started wearing clothing that I avoided before, like backless dresses and tank tops.
Still, despite its capacity to treat acne, spironolactone isnt free from potential side effects.
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Can Oral Spironolactone Be Used In Combination With Oral Antibiotic Therapy For Acne Vulgaris In Adult Women
It is important to recognize that the use of oral antibiotic therapy for AV, especially long-term use, including in combination with spironolactone, is not recommended without concomitant topical therapy. More specifically, use of a benzoyl peroxide-containing formulation is suggested to reduce the risk of emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains of Propionibacterium acnes.