Friday, March 17, 2017

Prescription Acne Medication

There are dozens of prescription acne medication to treat moderate to severe acne. Some are topical (applied to the skin surface), others are taken as pills or injections. Generally, mild and moderate forms of acne can be treated with over the counter acne remedies, but with severe cases the only recourse is to seek treatment from a dermatologist.


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In many cases, the doctor will recommend a prescription acne medication to deal with the condition. It also should be noted that these kinds of medication can be more effective even when dealing with moderate acne than what is typically available over the counter acne remedies. There are two types of  prescription acne medication- oral and topical.

Turning to Prescription Acne Medication
Antibiotics Oral
Acne is caused, in part, by a bacteria (Propionibacterium acnes). So, the disease can be combated, in part, by taking antibiotics. Like all powerful antibiotics some care is necessary when using these. Commonly used to fight acne, antibiotics can be taken orally or as a lotion.  Topical prescription medications may include ingredients such as zinc or retinoids.

Tetracycline (or its derivatives, doxycycline and minocycline) is one of the most commonly used. Both forms have been in use for many years and can substantially reduce inflammatory acne. normal dosage is 5-10 grams per day at first, though it's reduced as treatment progresses. Treatments may take several months. It, too, though carries some risk. Some patients' skin becomes sensitive to the sun during treatment.


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Treatment may take several weeks or even months to be effective and it is important to continue using antibiotics even after the acne has cleared up.  A common side effect associated with tetracycline is increased sensitivity to sun light resulting in bad sunburns if the patient stays in the sun too long.  Further side effects may include dizziness, hives, and upset stomach. Women who are taking tetracycline may be susceptible to an increase in incidences of vaginal yeast.

Isotretinoin

Isotretinoin is one of the oldest, and among the most effective.  In most cases of severe acne, the doctor will prescribe an antibiotic Isotretinoin is a types of acne medication in tablet form. The drug is able to prevent blockage of the hair follicles and decreases the amount of bacteria on the skin.

In addition isotretinoin also helps reduce sebum production in the skin glands. It is used on cystic and other advanced forms and has been used safely by millions for that purpose. But it does have some potential side effects and risks.

Isotretinoin can also relieve swelling in acne spots and reduce redness around the infected skin. Most users of the drug isotretinoin takes 4-6 months before results are seen. During the first 7-10 days of treatment, acne will look more spread out.


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Do not worry, this condition is considered normal in the early days of usage. Therefore, the use of isotretinoin is only recommended for those who suffered severe acne and could not recover with other treatments

Ointments and Topical Solutions

Antibiotic ointments actually have fewer complications than oral antibiotics.  Like oral antibiotics, topical treatments are rather effective in killing bacteria that cause acne. If you use these ointments with other topical treatments like benzoyl peroxide the bacteria may not develop resistance to the antibiotics. This increases the level of prevention that you will experience.

Retinoids
Retinoids are a form of acne medication that is derived from vitamin A and can be applied directly to the skin typically in the form of lotions or creams.  Topical retinoid medications are useful for treating blackheads and whiteheads by helping to open clogged pores.

Oral retinoids are used to treat the more severe forms of acne, because they have a better chance of dealing breakouts and lesions which don't respond to other treatments.  Oral retinoids cause the upper layer of the skin to peel thereby opening pores.  They also cause the body to produce less sebum – the substance which causes oily skin.

As with many other types of prescription strength medication, a number of serious side effects are associated with oral retinoids.  They can also cause liver damage and depression, so regular medical attention is needed to make sure the patient is not being adversely affected by retinoid treatment.

It is not unheard of for this kind of medication to cause birth defects if mothers are taking them when pregnant, so females should consult their doctor if pregnant, or suspect pregnancy.

Surgical Options

Often, when every avenue of medicinal treatment is exhausted, it becomes time for sufferers of persistent acne or more severe acne to seek alternative treatment methods.

A dermatologist can help discuss the different treatments currently available including treating acne with laser therapy or acne surgery.

If you are considering the possibility of treating acne with laser therapy or surgery, you must take care to fully evaluate each of the processes, including the number of required treatments, the consequent costs, and the potential side effects of the treatment. It's also important that you select a process that is designed to deal with reducing the presence of acne - and not acne scarring.

Acne Surgery

Acne surgery involves making an incision into the affected area and draining the clogged matter. The process for blackheads and whiteheads doesn't actually involve surgery, but is often performed by a nurse, esthetician or dermatologist. A small, pointed blade is used to first open the comedone and then gently work the material out using a comedone extractor.

Severe zits can be drained and removed by a procedure known as excisional surgery. The procedure should be performed in a sterile environment to reduce the risk of spreading bacterial infection and should only be performed by trained professional. If the cysts are not carefully extracted, they can develop serious infection and create scarring.

Using A Laser to Treat Acne

Laser treatments involve the use of varying wavelengths that are aimed directly at the affected area of the skin. These wavelengths pulsate against the skin and destroy overly-large sebaceous glands and acne lesions. Laser treatments remove the damaged outer layers of skin so that new cell growth can be initiated. The laser technician varies the intensity of the laser as necessary to effectively treat the area.


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Despite all of the benefits, there is still considerable debate surrounding the effectiveness of laser therapy. Yes, it has been shown to be effective in improving the skin's appearance, but as with most of the other available acne treatments, there are some side effects.

For example, patients can experience red, burned skin after treatment that can last for weeks. Individuals with dark-colored skin can end up with skin discoloration after laser treatments.  Finally, the skin’s appearance can be uneven if the laser is applied inconsistently.


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