What is acne?
Acne is a skin condition characterized by:
- Whiteheads and/or blackheads (mild acne)
- Pimples together with whiteheads and/or blackheads (moderate acne)
- Deep, inflamed painful swellings under the skin together with papules and pustules (severe acne)
What are the treatments available for acne?
Treatments available for acne may be in the form of:
- Topical applications (creams, lotions, gel and wash)
- Oral (tablets, capsules)
There are different groups of medicines for the treatment of acne, depending on the severity of the conditions. They include:
- Benzoyl peroxides, salicylic acid
- Hormones such as oral contraceptives and androgen blockers
- Retinoids – such as Isotretinoin
How long is the treatment?
One would expect to see the result within 3 months. However, in severe cases, it may take up to 5 months for the medication to work.
Do these treatments have any side effects?
Yes, side effects may include:
- Itchiness, dryness, redness, peeling, flaking, irritation
- Stomach upset, diarrhea
- Nausea, dizziness, headaches
- Sun sensitivity
- Teeth staining
Retinoid cause severe side effects compared to other groups of medications since it is a powerful anti-inflammatory medication.
Are there things to avoid when has acne?
Yes, you should not:
- Pick at an acne (this causes scar, which may be permanent)
- Discontinue the medications before completion
- Directly expose yourself to the sun
- Consume alcohol
Groups of acne medications, their functions and examples
|Benzoyl peroxide, Benzoic acid, Salicylic acid||
|Last reviewed||:||20 April 2012|
|Writer||:||Ainul Salhani bt. Abd Rahman|
|Reviewer||:||Nur Azibahwati bt. Aziz|