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What is acne?

Acne is an inflammatory pathology that affects approximately 80% of the population at some point in their lives, with a peak of involvement between the ages of 17 and 19. Its signs are different lesions on the skin, generally on the face, which correspond to papules, pustules and comedones; and in the most serious cases with nodules, cysts and scars.

Its origin may have one or more of the following causes, hence the difficulty in eliminating it:

  • • Hereditary component.
  • • Hormonal, due to stimulation of the secretion of the sebaceous glands.
  • • Infection by a bacterium called Propionibacterium Acnes, which belongs to the natural flora of the skin.
  • • Abnormal desquamation of the skin that clogs the pore and does not allow the inflammation to heal.

Types of acne.

  • • Comedonian, due to excessive use of greasy creams and make-up.
  • • Papulo-pustular, which corresponds to mild or moderate acne.
  • • Nodulo-cystic, the most serious type.
  • • Acne in adult women: it is located in the mandibular area and normally the hormones in the blood test have normal values (although hyperandrogenism and polycystic ovary syndrome must be ruled out).

Factors that can influence the appearance of acne

In summer, the sun and seawater, which have an anti-inflammatory effect, can improve inflammation, but sometimes there is a subsequent flare-up due to the use of greasy sunscreens and the skin's defence against the sun, causing a thickening that can worsen inflammation.

As for diet, the only scientifically based aspect is that foods with a high glycaemic index (such as sugar) and dairy products can overstimulate the sebaceous glands and worsen acne.

Make-up and cosmetics must be oil free and non-comedogenic in order NOT to worsen the condition.

How to treat acne?

• Topically: This consists of gels and soaps to clean the sebum; and keratolytics and exfoliants to desquamate the skin and reduce the number of bacteria. They can be combined with antibiotics.

• With oral treatments: Based on antibiotics, isotretinoin (the famous Roacutan) or hormonal treatments in cases of hyperandrogenism.

Treatments for acne scars

They should be carried out in the non-active phase of the acne and there are different options:

  • • Chemical peelings: The most commonly used at a superficial level are glycolic or salicylic, there is also the option of medium peelings (TCA) or deep peelings (phenol), which are much more aggressive.
  • • Fractionated ablative or non-ablative laser: It can be carried out in a more or less aggressive way and the number of sessions required must be assessed.
  • • Biophotonic therapy: It has an anti-inflammatory effect and is an alternative to Isotretinoin, is painless and has no side effects.
  • • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP): To stimulate the skin's collagen and regenerate.

You can see that there are several reasons that can cause acne and although it is a complex and difficult condition to eliminate, at Clínica Áureo we encourage you to make an appointment with our Dermatologist. We will try to find a definitive solution to your case or, if not, an improvement that will allow you to forget about this problem and recover your best version of yourself.

Who will assist you:

Dra. Ana Llull