Acne scars remains one of the most challenging condition to treat. In short, there is no one single treatment that is best for everyone. That being said, I see many patients whom are extremely frustrated after trying treatments that are not effective for their type of acne.
The carbon dioxide (CO2) laser is an effective treatment for atrophic (slightly depressed) scars. In the recent years, it has been used less as others are trying “simpler” procedures with little or no downtime, although with far less benefit. In this study over 77% of participants reported at least mild improvement, while 40% of the participants noted moderate to significant improvement.
That being said, this is not the only treatment for this type of scarring. Dermabrasion and medium depth chemical peels (i.e. TCA – trichloroacetic acid) are good options as well. Short term options include fillers, such as Restylane.
Citation: Elcin G, Yalici-Armagan B. Fractional carbon dioxide laser for the treatment of facial atrophic acne scars: Prospective clinical trial with short and long-term evaluation. 2017;32(9):2047-2054. doi:10.1007/s10103-017-2322-7.
With the dry air seen in the Winter, people are more susceptible to having dry skin or flares of eczema. Here are some simple tips that can help keep your skin well-moisturized.
- Shower no more than once daily. NEVER use hot water.
- Use a mild soap, like Dove fragrance-free soap. Pure soaps or those from “specialty stores” should be avoided. Try using soap only where needed (groin, armpits, under the breasts) most of the time.
- It is best to apply moisturizer immediately after showering, while the skin is still moist.
- Never sit is soapy bath water. Use soap immediately before exiting.
- Oils and Ointments are better than creams, which are much better than lotions.
- Good examples of moisturizer include: Eucerin cream and Cetaphil cream, both of which are readily available. For those who just cannot stand putting anything on their skin, Nivea In Shower Lotion for Severely Dry Skin (dark blue bottle) is good for those that have mild dryness and are not overly sensitive. For those on a budget, Crisco oil works great as a moisturizer too and is easy to spread.
- Use laundry detergents and fabric softeners that are mild–“free of dyes and perfumes”. Dreft and Ivory Snow, for babies, is a good alternative.
- Avoid irritating clothing–i.e. wool.
- Apply perfume or cologne to clothing and not directly to the skin, as these contain alcohol which is irritating.
Finally, patients are able to self-treat mild to moderate inflammatory and comedonal acne with over-the-counter treatments.
Blackheads and whiteheads can now be treated effectively with Differin gel, which went over-the-counter earlier this year. This medication is similar to Retin A, the drug everyone knows about. These medications help to unclog pores are and more effective than any other over-the-counter medication.
Inflammatory lesions, such as red bumps and pustules, can be treated using a 5% benzoyl peroxide gel (use 5% or less as higher concentrations result in more skin irritation).
I do not recommend spot treating as acne is a chronic disease, so the idea is to treat the lesions that one has, but we also want to prevent new lesions from coming up.
Those with cystic or very inflammatory lesions will benefit from oral antibiotics and/or Accutane, both of which require a prescription.
Those with scarring should seek professional advice from a board-certified Dermatologist as soon as possible.
Revance Therapeutics Inc. said that an experimental drug RT002 [injectable daxibotulinumtoxinA] can smooth wrinkles for longer than Allergan’s Botox, according to the results of late-stage studies. We will have to wait for the published data to see, but at least early reports look promising.
This is becoming a big problem, but one can solve this most often without additional help. Here are a couple of references:
Botox and Dysport have been used to treat the forehead for nearly 2 decades as an “off label indication”. This has no impact on the treatment of the forehead furrows, but it does have the FDA’s stamp of approval.
To celebrate this we are offering treatment of the forehead for $199. This does not include the treatment of any other area (frown lines or crow’s feet). You must present this article to receive this special offer.
Restrictions apply–inquire to find out more. This offer expires November 1, 2017.
Sorry–not a skin related post, but given that it is breast cancer awareness month, those without insurance or those with high deductibles that cannot afford mammograms should take advantage of this offer!
Sat. Sept. 23rd 8am-2pm–call 954.762.3649
Broward Health Medical Center
For qualified persons only