Thyroid Disorders Community
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Adult acne and thyroid disorder relation?

I am a relatively healthy 25 year old female. I have had acne since I was maybe 12 or 13. Extremely sensitive skin- adverse reactions to salicylic acid and anything higher than a 2% benzoyl peroxide. Have tried differin, retin-a, duac, also natural solutions such as tea tree oil, lemon, honey, coconut, eggs, yogurt, witch hazel. Also have tried systems such as proactiv and muriad to no avail. Have completely overhauled my diet- hardly any sugar, no white/ refined starches, very little dairy, no red meat, lots of veggies, lots of water. No caffine, little to no alcohol. Multi vitamin every day and extra Zinc, Calcium, and Magnesium. Plenty of sleep. Cleanse skin at least 2x/day (sometimes I have to do 3 due to my oil production). Exfoliate regularly, but not too harshly. Change my pillow case every other night (flipping sides in between), and never use the same towel on my face without washing it. I do not touch my skin except for when my hands are clean and I am in front of a mirror, and I use no hair products, and keep it off of my face. I am an esthetician, so I know how to take care of the skin and I know about underlying causes of ance, but I am STILL CONSTANTLY breaking out. I will be sure to have my face clear of whiteheads before bed and EVERY morning, I wake up with at least 2 or 3 new ones. When I leave my house for work during the day, no whiteheads, but by the time I get home another 2 or 3 on my face. I do not use heavy makeups, and all of my products are oil-free and non comedogenic.(Not trying to be long-winded, just trying to make it clear that I have tried to eliminate every possibility of what the cause could be) I was recently talking to one of my co-workers while she was giving me a facial and she mentioned that it may be a thyroid disorder. I was thinking that or possibly something hormonal- but I have no insurance (independent contractor) and was wondering if there is cause to go see an endocrinologist at out-of-pocket expense. I have been in and out of the dermatologist office and truly feel like nothing they do helps. I really don't want to go on Accutane due to the horrendus side effects. Any ideas on what's going on with my skin? Please help!
9 Responses
649848 tn?1534637300
I haven't specifically heard of acne being a thyroid symptom, however, everyone is different and nothing should be ruled out until adequate testing has been done.

Since you have no insurance and endos tend to be pretty pricey, I  might suggest that you get the thyroid tests done on your own, and when you get the results, you can decide if you need treatment.  

To determine if you have a thyroid condition, you need a basic thyroid panel, consisting of TSH, Free T3 and Free T4.  There are online sites that you can go to, to order these tests, without seeing a doctor.  One site that I'm familiar with and have used, myself is health check usa.  The thyroid panel mentioned above costs about $85.  You order the tests, they e-mail you a lab order and tell you what lab to go to in your area (usually LabCorp, which is a reputable national company); you go get the blood draw and within a couple days healthcheck will e-mail your results, followed up with a mailed hard copy.

There are other online sites from which you can obtain the testing, as well, but I haven't used them, so can't speak for their level of service.

Once you have those results, you will know whether or not, you need to follow up with a doctor (does not have to be an endo).  We can help you evaluate the test results, since not all results that fall in a normal range, are really normal, for the individual.

Do you have any other symptoms of a thyroid condition?  

Here's one site I found that does link thyroid with acne:


You might want to add the antithyroglobulin antibodies (TGab) to your list of tests and while you're at it, get, also Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies (TPOab).  These tests will determine if you have Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, which is an autoimmune disease in which the body sees the thyroid as foreign and produces antibodies to destroy it.  The disease is progressive and as the antibodies destroy healthy thyroid tissue, the thyroid will produce less and less hormones, until finally it produces nothing and you're completely dependent on replacement medication. Most people are started on replacement medication, long before the destruction process is complete.  

With Hashimoto's, symptoms often show up long before thyroid labs indicate a problem.

1756321 tn?1547098925
Accutane is nothing more than a synthetic pre-formed replacement for vitamin A.  Vitamin A is essential for proper health of the eyes and the skin.  The conversion of beta carotene into vitamin A is dependent on several factors: protein status, thyroid hormone, zinc and vitamin C.
Avatar universal
I know that your question is more related to the thyroid and the possibility of it's effect on acne but I do have a suggestion to the acne treatment.  My son uses Clindamycin Pledgets  twice a day and I will say that they work for him.  He also follows a very healthy diet with plenty of fruits and veggies, avoid junk foods (ie chips, pizza, sweets, etc).  He drinks green tea twice a day but doubles up on the tea bags to get more of the green tea. He squeezes fresh lemon in his water once a day and drinks lots of water the rest of the day to detoxify his system.  He changes his pillow case every 1-2 days.  He keeps his hands away from his face. Shaves with an electric razor and disinfects razor head with alcohol after. He still gets on occasional whitehead but the Clindamycin Pledgets are by far the most successful treatment.  Before the pledgets he had tried many other things like Neutrogena,  Proactive, etc with fair to poor results.   I hope some of theses suggestions help you.  
Avatar universal
Thank you for your response, I will look into i :)t
Avatar universal
Thank you for taking the time to respond- I will definitely look into at-home testing and I really appreciate the website referral... it can be confusing knowing who to spend money on. I don't know that I have any other thyroid conditions unless depression and anxiety fall into that category.
Avatar universal
Thank you for your response, appreciate your opinion.
Avatar universal
Hi Barb135... The reason I'm even posting here is Because you said a few things to test for to check for different kinds of thyroid problems that I begged my PCP to check for & age kept running the same standard thyroid panel & she kept saying I was "NORMAL"... Even though I was high on the 1 (F3 or F4) & low on the other (F3 or F4)... Yet even when I brought that to her (my Drs) attention She said safe want writing me anymore tests because my tests came back fine... However, I suffer from severe adult acne, mainly along my jawline, but lately it's also been on my cheeks. I'm 32yo & want to have kids but many symptoms are mainly in the reproductive area. Every month I loathe getting my period, because I'm literally out of commission in bed for upwards of 1week, passing huge blood clots of 1-3" long... The pain associated with my period I can only guess would be like giving birth!! Lately I've noticed my hairs been growing in absolutely white!!! Not gray or ashy, but pure white! In an average year I go to the ER about 5x a year because of the pain, which I can only describe as feeling like I have jagged pieces of metal & glass rolling around my pelvis in a contraction like manner... I've been diagnosed with PCOS, Uterine Fibroids & the Dr said minor endometriosis... But almost Everytime I've ended up in the ER I'm told on top of everything else I have a twisted cyst.

Now another tipping I'm worried about is that within the last year & a half I've noticed my throat area has taken on a swollen look... It's to the point that people who know me are asking if everything's ok &/or if my throats bothering me at all because it's swollen.

I've suspected a thyroid problem for awhile. I exhibit all the symptoms of a Hypo, except I don't ever gain weight... However I've actually started noticing my weights starting to go up & whereas some might gain it all over... I'm gaining it only around the middle. Granted I'm still only 125lbs, but between my height & weight I remind myself off a Tornado shape, because I have nothing up top, but an ever increasing bottom half. My hands & feet are ALWAYS ice cold, my facial skin looks thick (not feminine AT ALL!!), the last 6 month's my period has started becoming more & more irregular to the point I never know when I'm gonna get my period... My anxiety it's getting worse & worse... & I actually feel severely depressed because of my symptoms! The quality of my life is actually being messed with... I don't want to be put on birth control because I want to have kids... I already had a pelvic laparoscopy & it did NOTHING to ease my symptoms & pain except for the 1st couple months right after the laparoscopy... But then my period, pain & symptoms came right back, granted the thyroid symptoms never went away they just got worse.

ANY help or additional info you could give would be greatly appreciated! Another thing I'm very concerned about is the Lymph nodes on the back of my neck on the right side are super hard & painful!! Could this be related or something completely different?

If I had insurance I'd be at the dress everyday til I got answers, but I don't have insurance & I'm out of work because of being on constant pain... & I was denied the Obamacare thing... So I seem to be up craps creek!

Thank you in advance for any info... Or even support & prayers would be welcomed & beyond appreciated!! God knows I need a miracle!!!

Thank you thank you thank you!!!! :-D
Erink625 I experienced the exact same symptoms for years including many visits to ER for sever pain. I finally found a DR that did very detailed blood work checking T3 and T4. I was borderline thyroid problem. I was already super healthy, great weight and worked out an hour each day. However keeping my weight under control was always a struggle. My Dr had me read wheat belly and removed all dairy.  I then found Hayley Pomory and the fast metabolism diet which is designed for your thyroid. After 28 days of following her plan i have not experienced pain again, feel wonderful and any extra weight came off. You eat a ton of food. Check out her blog and book. Tons of great receipts on Pinterest under fast metabolism diet. Hoping this helps you become pain free.
Avatar universal
In short, my symptoms are:
*No libido
*Irregular periods
*Paying blood clots
*Swollen throat area (Goiter??)
*Painful sex
*Uterine Fibroids
*Stolen Lymph Nodes
*Thick Facial Skin
*Super slow hair growth
*Head hair growing in pure white!!
*I've cold hands & feet
*Beyond tired (could sleep all day!!)
*Aches & pains
*Adult Acne
*Cavities no matter how much I brush!
***I know I'm forgetting Alot! But I figured this would be an easier way to see what I'm dealing with without having to read the novel I posted above & did a poor job of spell checking!! Lol! But if you want please read!! The end results the same! I'm looking for help & answers because I'm at my wits end! I can't live like this anymore! I've been having problems since I was 14y/o... I'm exhausted & just exhausted our no one don't the right tests to be able to correctly diagnose me & start fixing my broken body!! (The longer this goes on the more I start working it could be cancer because of the different symptoms I've started exhibiting! Please help! Thank you again!!!
Avatar universal
I'm sure that Barb is out for the night, so I thought that I would go ahead and ask you to please post the actual thyroid test results and reference ranges shown on the lab report.  I am sure there will be other questions as well, but we need to be able to compare your thyroid test results to their reference ranges.  
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649848 tn?1534637300
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1756321 tn?1547098925
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