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Chicago Medical Dermatology Conditions Acne

Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States. Oftentimes, information is misleading or inaccurate. This can make the condition more difficult to clear. Contrary to popular belief, letting acne "run it's course" can lead to permanent scars and dark spots.

Who get's acne?
Anyone can develop acne. It often starts in adolescence, however a growing number of women in their 3rd, 4th, and 5th decades develop acne.

Why does acne form?
Acne starts in the oil gland which gets plugged when certain bacteria that live on our skin (P. acnes) form a biofilm at its opening and plug it. The same bacteria penetrate inside the plugged oil glands and digest the trapped oil. This digested oil is not recognized as "Self" by the immune system and therefore it has to be rejected, through pustules (pimples), papules (bumps), nodules, cysts, etc

Signs
Blackheads, whiteheads, papules, pustules, nodules, cysts

Symptoms
Low self esteem, depression, permanent scars, dark spots

Evaluation
A board certified dermatologist makes an accurate assessment and grades/classifies your acne with a thorough physical exam of your face, chest, shoulders, and back

Treatment
Treatment of acne is a stepwise approach

1. Topical therapies
a. Retinoids: stimulate a more rapid turnover of cells and thereby help the skin shed the acne producing plugs and also discourage plug formation.
b. Benzoyl peroxide/topical antibiotics
c. Azeleic acid

2. Systemic therapies
a. Oral contraceptive pills
b. Spironolactone: this is a diuretic pill with anti-androgen activity. Care must be taken to avoid pregnancy during therapy. The serum potassium will also be monitored.
c. Isotretinoin (previously Accutane) – http://ipledgeprogram.com

3. Surgical therapies
Extraction can be used to eliminate the contents of a larger acne cyst. Intralesional corticosteroid injection can also quickly be used to reduce the inflammation of a forming or formed acne lesion.


To discuss your Acne Chicago condition with a Board Certified Dermatologist please make an online appointment or call (312) 585 7299 today.