Acne is a skin condition where outbreaks of bumps called pimples appear on the face, neck, back, or chest. It is very common especially among teenagers due to the change in hormone levels. Women may get acne when their hormone levels change during pregnancy, just before a menstrual cycle or when starting birth control pills. Acne forms when the pores in the skin become clogged with an oil called sebum. This sebum build-up causes the surrounding hair follicle to swell creating a blackhead, whitehead, pimples, and deeper lumps such as cysts and nodules.
Almost all cases of acne can be effectively treated. Treatment will depend on the nature and degree of the acne but the goal is always to heal existing lesions, stop new lesions from forming, and prevent acne scars. Mild cases of acne may respond well to a topical retinoid where more moderate cases of acne might need a combination of a topical treatment with an antibiotic or other medication. When acne is more severe it may need treatment with isotretinoin, the active ingredient of Accutane. Chemical peels and laser treatments can also help clear up acne. Often, a combination of any of these methods will be used so that the best possible results are achieved.
After the acne is cleared from the skin there may be residual scarring left over. This is particularly common with cystic acne which causes much deeper lesions. Texas Dermatology can help improve the appearance of acne scars through several treatment options. The treatment choice depends on the type of scarring whether it is dark marks, pitted, raised, or a combination. Laser scar removal, or reduction, is one of the most common procedures performed for acne scarring. With the use of a handheld laser specific to dermatology, scars are lessened significantly in the office with no downtime or invasive procedures. The type of skin laser treatment that will be most effective for you depends on the type of acne scarring you have. A consultation with the doctors will help to develop a plan for your acne treatment and acne scarring.