Acne is a common problem for thousands of men and women, but it doesn’t have to be. Olympic Dermatology offers clinically-proven acne treatments to promote healthy skin that is clear and blemish-free.
What Is Acne?
Acne Vulgaris is the term for plugged facial pores (blackheads and whiteheads), pimples, and deeper lumps (cysts or nodules) that occur on the face, neck, chest, shoulders, back, and scalp. Acne affects 40 to 50 million Americans each year. Most teenagers experience some acne, but this disease can affect individuals into their adult years. Clinical studies have found that acne is definitely more prevalent in males until they reach the age of 23, then surprisingly the incidence is reversed. After the age of 25, 12% of women were found to have clinical facial acne compared to only 3% of men. While acne is not life threatening, the clinical lesions and scars can be quite upsetting and permanently disfiguring. If left untreated, acne patients can experience diminished self-esteem, social withdrawal, and depression.
“I’ve struggled with acne for 10+ years with no improvement except a decline in my self-confidence. Larry Robinson was able to quickly and thoroughly find the root of my problem. He prescribed the right topical ointment along with helpful tips in taking care of my face and skin, and I saw immediate results within 2 weeks, seriously… 2 weeks! My skin has never been this clear and it keeps improving.”
— Olympic Dermatology acne patient, December 2018
How Does Acne Form?
There are four key players involved in the development of acne; oily skin, clogged pores, bacteria, and inflammation. Hormonal influences during puberty stimulate and enlarge the oil (sebaceous) glands of the skin. These glands are connected to hair-containing canals called follicles. The sebaceous glands make an oily substance called sebum, which normally migrates to the skin via the follicle. A plug called a comedone develops in the hair follicle as the first sign of acne. A bacterium grows in this mixture of oil and releases chemicals that attract inflammatory cells. This bacteria mixture can cause the follicle wall to rupture, which can lead to the swelling and the red inflammatory pimples and pustules associated with acne.
What Are the Treatments for Acne?
The providers at Olympic Dermatology can provide the most advanced and proven acne treatment options to help calm and reduce acne breakouts. Many treatment options involve a combination of therapies, including the daily use of topical or oral medications. Prescription medications are formulated to target and reverse the skin changes – trapped oil, clogged pores, bacteria, and inflammation – that lead to the development of acne vulgaris. Retinoid may be prescribed as a part of a comprehensive acne treatment program. Retinoids unplug the hair follicles, reduce inflammation, and prevent pimple production. These products are useful but may cause some dryness, sun sensitivity and irritation, so proper application and follow-ups are necessary.
There are presently a variety of over-the-counter choices for your skin care if you have acne. For normal skin care, washing your face twice a day with mild soap and warm water is your best choice. Blackheads and acne pimples are not caused by dirt. The black in a blackhead is dried oil and shed skin cells deposited in the pores. Olympic Dermatology also offers skin care products, such as Epionce, that are medically proven to improve acne.
Topical antibiotics are also prescribed and have been clinically proven to reduce bacterial counts in acne patients. Prescriptive lotions and gels work well to reduce acne inflammation, and pimple production. Sometimes these medications are used alone or in combination with other topical or oral medications.
Oral antibiotics are often prescribed for moderate to severe acne. Antibiotic use has been shown to reduce bacterial counts in the follicle and decrease general redness and irritation. Careful patient selection, the right antibiotic, and follow-ups are critical when oral antibiotics are used for acne.
In severe, cystic, or scarring forms of acne that have not been responsive to other treatments, the use of Accutane (oral Isotretinoin) may be recommended. The success of Accutane is well documented, but laboratory testing, psychological screening and monthly monitoring are required to reduce systemic side effects. The FDA now mandates that patients, physicians, pharmacists, and drug companies be linked in a federal registry. The primary purpose is to reduce the number of pregnancies that occur to women who are actively taking Accutane with can result in birth defects.
How to Prevent Acne Scaring?
One important goal of acne treatment is to prevent scaring. Most pimples take a few weeks to clear, but more sever lesions, especially nodules and cysts, can cause persistent redness and even permanent scaring. Once this has occurred, we have many treatment options to reduce the appearance of scaring as a result from acne. IPL Fotofacials laser treatment can be used for persistent redness. Ice pick and sharp edge scars can be improved with laser resurfacing, and depressed scars can be improved with a skin tightening device, such as Infini, that provides skin tightening and rejuvenation. Discolorations can be improved with laser procedures, IPL Fotofacials and chemical peels.
Whatever acne treatment options, one must remember that there is no instant cure, and maintenance therapy is necessary to prevent reoccurrence. The good news is that today acne sufferers can benefit, as never before, from new proven medical and technological advances in the treatment of Acne Vulgaris.
I’m very satisfied with everything about my acne treatment and results, from medical information and education to how you met my expectations. I’ll definitely be back and refer you to others.
My daughter’s acne caused her much grief in high school. But it’s cleared up since we began seeing her physician assistant Larry Robinson at Olympic Dermatology. Very understanding, he quickly assessed her condition and prescribed a topical treatment that keeps acne flare ups at bay. She’s so much happier, thank you!
Make an appointment with one of our expert providers for acne treatment by calling 360-459-1700 or schedule online in our patient portal. We look forward to helping you create a skincare regimen that works, and that will lead to healthier, acne-free skin.Make an appointment with one of our expert providers for acne treatment by calling 360-459-1700 or schedule online in our patient portal. We look forward to helping you create a skincare regimen that works, and that will lead to healthier, acne-free skin.