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A 19-year-old female asked:

What is acne?

19 doctor answers40 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ajay Acharya
A Verified Doctoranswered
38 years experience
Blocked sebum....: Each hair follicle has a sweat gland....which opens to a skin pore........because of some reason the pore or sweat duct gets blocked to cause cummulation of fluid which can get infected and inflamed and raised above skin surface..........Acne
Dr. Neeraja Mattay
Dermatology 35 years experience
Inflamed pores: Acne is the result of clogged, inflamed, sometimes infected hair follicles. Acne may look like small black spots, white bumps, or even like cysts beneath the skin on the back, shoulders, face, or other area. Due to the risk of scarring and the high likelihood of embarrassment, professional care should be sought if over-the-counter remedies do not clear the skin. Learn more at http://dermdocs.com/.
Dr. Gerardo Guerra Bonilla
Family Medicine 13 years experience
Pimples: Acne is the medical term for pimples. Pimples happen when pores get clogged with dead skin and oil, and bacteria build up. Then the skin gets inflamed and can turn red or swell.
Dr. Dean Giannone
Internal Medicine 26 years experience
Acne=infection.: Acne is truly an infection within the pores of the skin, so any effective treatment for acne should initially include both a drying agent (i.e. benzoyl peroxide) and an antibiotic (which could be topical or oral).
Dr. John Manzella
Internal Medicine and Pediatrics 48 years experience
Attack Acne!: The root of the evil zit is bacterial inflammation. An omega-3 fatty acid with a probiotic combats the core problem. A topical agent combining benzoyl peroxide with an antibiotic (clindamycin) is next with the possibilty of an oral antibiotic as the next step. See your doctor to discuss these strategies with the possibility of powerful dermatological agents such as retin-a.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
Scientific Rx: Start off with topical benzoyl peroxide as you can tolerate, 1-2x/day, 2.5 to 10% as your skin can take. The alternative is retinoic acid. If you are not clear in two weeks, try adding topical clindamycin if you can get it, or your physician will need to add prescription strength Rx. Acne is basically unrelated to diet, sex, or hygiene and it will remit unpredictably; until then, manage it.
Dr. Arthur Balin
Dermatology 48 years experience
Acne: It is important to treat your acne so that you don't get permanent scarring. Some patients wait too long before seeing their dermatologist to have their acne treated. Normally topical medicines and internal antibiotics are used to keep acne under control. You can start with an over the counter benzoyl peroxide wash while you are waiting for your appointment with your dermatologist.
Dr. Tom Pousti
Specializes in Plastic Surgery
See Dermatologist: Best to be seen by a well experienced board-certified dermatologist; nothing replaces in person history and physical when it comes to good medical care/recommendations. Best wishes.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
Scientific Rx: If topical benzoyl peroxide as tolerated has not cleared you in two weeks, or if there are scars or it's on your trunk, get with your personal physician.
Dr. Kathy Robinson
Family Medicine 33 years experience
Blocked follicles: Acne is a condition in which hair follicles on your face and other skin areas get blocked with oil ad dead skin cells. It is common in teenagers and may be exacerbated by hormonal shifts. It usually but not always clears up when people get somewhat older. Here is a link to a site for more information http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/acne/basics/definition/con-20020580
Dr. James Rochester
Family Medicine 27 years experience
Several things: Use acne cleansing wash twice a day (morning and night) Use benzoyl peroxide lotion to all areas affected (not just on pimples but whole face, chest, back...where ever affected) very thin film in the morning. Want to use exfoliating lotion after washing each evening (retin A (tretinoin) containing lotion). This is good way to start. KEEP AT IT. Must do every day. Should see results after 3-4 weeks.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
Serious Rx: My colleague has recommended the two best basic remedies and they are your best friends. Around half of acne patients will get a satisfactory result. The others will need at least a short course of prescription-strength Rx. Don't hesitate to get help from your personal physician.
Dr. Edwin Ishoo
A Verified Doctoranswered
29 years experience
Acne: Please see your dermatologist since you have not provided us any information about yourself or your Acne. Make sure you see a doctor not an esthetician who is not in an actual dermatologist's office working off a treatment plan designed by the doctor.
Dr. Satish Sundar
Pediatrics 35 years experience
Please see referance: It is a big topic, so please review this site. It is an inflammation of the oil glands over the face chest and back primarily. Hormonal factors play a big role esp. in teens. Young adults may have other factors contributing to this and will need some further evaluation. https://www.aad.org/dermatology-a-to-z/diseases-and-treatments/a---d/acne
Dr. Nazhat Sharma
Ophthalmology 59 years experience
Keep skin dry, avoid sugars and spices, drink plenty water, do not pick on acne. Use Retin-A & Antibiotics on consultation with your PCP
Jul 6, 2015
Dr. Stephen Southard
Internal Medicine 16 years experience
Skin disorder: Involving the pilosebaceous follicles which encompasses the hair shaft, the hair follicle, the sebaceous(oil) gland. Acne involves increased "debris", so called follicular hyperkeratinization, in the follicle, along with increased sebum(oil) production, and inflammation that may in part be related to the Propionibacterium acnes bacteria.
Dr. Chad Rudnick
Pediatrics 11 years experience
Acne: Acne is an infection of the skin, caused by changes in the sebaceous glands. Detailed info can be found here: https://www.aad.org/dermatology-a-to-z/diseases-and-treatments/a---d/acne/signs-symptoms --- See your doctor or dermatologist for eval and treatment plan. Also can have a HealthTap consult to help with acne.
Dr. Jennifer Tighe De Soto
Cosmetic Surgery 16 years experience
Infection: Acne is generally speaking a tiny abscess. It's an infection in the skin's pores that forms a pus pocket with surrounding inflammation.
Dr. Gurmukh Singh
Pathology 50 years experience
See below: Acne commonly occur around puberty and due to changes in secretions of gland associated with hair follicles. The follicles get plugged with the secretion, dead cells and may get infected with bacteria. See this site for more information. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/acne/basics/definition/CON-20020580
Dr. Christine Hom
Pediatrics 31 years experience
Acne: During puberty, there is an increase in sebum production in the skin. Sebum and skin debris clog pores and the blockage results in inflammation. Gently cleaning the surface of the skin and applying acne medications such as benzoyl peroxide or prescription clindamycin help reduce the bacteria and clean up to the top layer of the skin allowing the pimples/comedones to clear over time.

Similar questions

A 19-year-old male asked:

How to get off acne?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
Scientific Rx: Start with benzoyl peroxide; if this isn't enough visit your physician, first line is topical retinoic derivatives &/or a topical antibiotic such as clindamycin. If still not sufficient, the right systemic antibiotic for you, perhaps tetracycline 500 2x/day. Dermatologist visit if still not clear. Good luck. All acne is manageable today.
A 18-year-old male asked:

I have acne, what are the things that I should and shouldn't do?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Roman Bronfenbrener
Dermatology 10 years experience
Meds: Many patients do well with over the counter benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid preparations. Some patients require topical or oral antibiotics or retinoids as well. If the over the counter meds alone don't control your acne after a month of daily use, see a doctor for additional treatment options. It is important to be persistent, and some patients 'get worse before they get better'.
A 16-year-old male asked:

Acne from masturbating?

1 doctor answer4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
No: By your age, almost all guys are masturbating. It's a good thing overall. You stay comfortable and can focus on other tasks. You learn about your mind and body in preparation for adult life. And most teens get acne. All acne is manageable today; your physician can help. If anybody hassles you about what you do in private, ignore them; dad might even be a guy to talk to about all this. Best wishesl.
Yuma, AZ
A male asked:

How do you care your acne?

1 doctor answer3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
Scientific Rx: All acne can be managed. Start with topical benzoyl peroxide. If this is inadequate, get with your physician. The next step is often topical Clindamycin and/or a retinoic acid derivative topically. If this isn't good enough after a month, a systemic antibiotic such as tetracycline 500 2x/day often helps, or start this at once if it's on the trunk. Home remedies fail; strong rx from dermatologists.
A 36-year-old member asked:

What should I do about moderate acne?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
Scientific Rx: Benzoyl peroxide is your best over-the-counter remedy. If not clear in two weeks, your physician can write for topical clindamycin, a topical retinoic acid derivative, or some systemic medication as appropriate. All acne can be managed successfully nowadays. Best wishes.

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Last updated Dec 7, 2018

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