What is Acne?
Tiny oil (sebum) secreting glands on our skin constantly produce sebum to moisturise and protect our skin and hair follicles. Sometimes these pores can become blocked with thickened sebum or dead skin resulting in inflamed or infected glands.
If the blockage and inflammation results in damage to the wall of the gland, acne can occur; pimples, papules and cysts can be formed often leaving long term scarring. Acne can occur spontaneously but is often worsened by picking or squeezing the skin. .
The aim of treatment is to halt the inflammatory process and prevent further scarring. Once scarring has occurred specific scarring treatments are needed to reverse the damage such chemical skin peel, laser resurfacing, derma rollers, skinboosters or platelet rich plasma rejuvenation.
During an acne consultation your doctor will discuss precipitants and lifestyle modifications as well as conservative measures to reduce the severity and frequency of flare-ups. Most clients with facial acne will require a medium term course of prescription treatment to minimize any further scarring.
Prescription treatments for acne include: –
- Azelaic acid
- Oral antibiotics
- Oral contraceptives
- Obagi Clenziderm system
It is important to remember that these treatments are not effective once acne scarring has already occurred.
Severe acne not responding to the above treatments would need referal to a dermatologist.