What Causes Acne?What Causes Acne?
May 13, 2017

What Causes Acne?

What causes acne?

One of the most common skin conditions seen by nearly all medical professionals is acne. While it is typically regarded as a disease that lingers only during adolescence, those who suffer from it know that the effects can last a lifetime. Not only are the papules and cysts that develop challenging to treat, but they can also cause severe scarring.

Acne most commonly occurs on the face, but it can also occur on the neck, chest, back, and arms. Typically, there is an increase in acne occurrence and severity during the teenage years, and it is estimated that this can last for 5-10 years. Teenagers aren’t the only ones affected though! Acne can occur at any point in life and affects both men and women.

What causes acne?

Acne tends to be multifactorial, meaning there are a combination of different factors that contribute to its development. There are four components that are believed to encourage acne development:

  1. Plugged follicles
  2. Increased sebum production
  3. Presence of Propionibacterium acnes
  4. Inflammation

Plugged Follicles: have you ever noticed all those tiny white hairs on your face? Sometimes people refer to it as “peach fuzz.” More technically, they are called vellus hairs. Each of those hairs is attached to your skin through a hair follicle.

Now, let’s complicate things a little more. Your skin surface is made up of layers and layers of cells, all stacked on top of each other. You can compare it to a wall of bricks. Now, your skin is constantly creating more cells (on the bottom layer) and shedding the old cells (the top layer). But, sometimes things get sluggish. And those cells don’t shed like they are supposed to. This is where you get those plugged follicles, or keratinization within the follicle. Once the hair follicles have become plugged this sets the stage for sebum production and bacteria to creep inside the skin and contribute to inflammation.

Increased Sebum Production: This increased sebum production further complicates matters. The sebaceous (oil) glands are overzealous, producing more oil than your body truly needs. Some people may simply have over active sebaceous glands. But sometimes it is due to harsh soaps and hot water. Many over the counter acne washes are designed to strip all the oil off your skin. Unfortunately when we do that our sebaceous glands compensate by producing even more oil. This increase in oil plugs the hair follicle, setting up a great medium for bacteria growth.

Proprionibacterium acnes: This little organism is typically present on many people’s skin. However, when given the right circumstances (plugged follicles and increased sebum production) it likes to proliferate, leading to an immune response in the body. This is why antibiotics are often used in cases of moderate to severe acne.

Inflammation: All the aforementioned factors contribute to inflammation. Inflammation is simply your body’s response to things it doesn’t like. Your body tries to fight off the bacteria by attracting white blood cells to the plugged hair follicle. This produces those classic signs of inflammation: redness, swelling, pain, and heat.

There are many other factors that can contribute to acne. Some of these include the use of certain medications, hormones, stress, cosmetics, and genetics. It is important to take a multi-faceted approach when combating acne because there are so many contributing factors! It is also important to remember that treating acne takes time and patience. There are no “miracle” creams or “quick-fixes.” Diligent daily care, in addition to professional treatments, is often used together to control acne.

Our professional staff will work with you to develop a comprehensive treatment plan to address your needs, whether you suffer from current acne or the resultant scarring. For more information, check out our treatments for acne: Fractora, Chemical Peels, and Professional Skincare products.

References:

National Institutes of Health. (November, 2015). Questions and answers about acne. Retrieved from: http://www.niams.nih.gov/health_info/acne/#tol
Bhatia A, Maisonneuve J.F., Persing D.H., (2004). Proprionibacterium acnes and chronic diseases. Institute of Medicine (US) Forum on Microbial Threats. Available from:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK83685/

View all articles
Latest News

Our Blogs

My Venous Ulcer Is Not Healing. What Do I Do?My Venous Ulcer Is Not Healing. What Do I Do?
April 1, 2021

My Venous Ulcer Is Not Healing. What Do I Do?

An ulcer is an open skin sore that can appear anywhere on your body. The red, swollen sores that ooze aren’t exactly pleasant to look at and are even painful. While ulcers can form anywhere on the body, they most often form on the legs. Venous ulcers are often the result of poor blood circulation in the legs and are a condition that shouldn’t be ignored. The open skin sore can develop into a serious problem if left untreated. Unlike a cut or a scrape, which heal naturally via the body’s healing process, an ulcer can not heal without proper treatment and can possibly lead to infection. Thankfully, with the appropriate advice and guidance, it’s possible to manage a venous ulcer.

What Is Sclerotherapy Treatment For Veins?What Is Sclerotherapy Treatment For Veins?
August 28, 2019

What Is Sclerotherapy Treatment For Veins?

What is sclerotherapy treatment for veins? Sclerotherapy treatment for veins is a technique used by physicians and nurses to eradicate varicose and spider veins. Sclerotherapy treatment is inserting a needle inside an unwanted vein, then injecting a medication (called a sclerosant) into the vein. The sclerosant causes irritation and spasm of the vein, which results in vein closure. Once the vein closes your body begins the process of resorption, or breaking the vein down. This is the end results regardless if we are treating large, bulging varicose veins, or teeny tiny spider veins.

What Are The Recommendations On Sunscreen?What Are The Recommendations On Sunscreen?
July 23, 2019

What Are The Recommendations On Sunscreen?

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) came out earlier this year voicing concerns about the safety profile of common ingredients found in sunscreen. A study conducted by the FDA demonstrated that several chemical sunscreen ingredients are actually systemically absorbed by the body, meaning they get into our bloodstream and can be detected in blood work. Safe levels of these ingredients have not been established yet.

Should I Get Sclerotherapy Or Laser Treatment On My Spider Veins?Should I Get Sclerotherapy Or Laser Treatment On My Spider Veins?
January 23, 2019

Should I Get Sclerotherapy Or Laser Treatment On My Spider Veins?

The question whether sclerotherapy or laser works best for spider veins inevitably comes up in consultations frequently. And rightly so. A comprehensive vein treatment center wouldn’t be complete if it only offered a single option to patients. Our patients are unique, and treatment should be to.

What Is Causing This Ulcer On My Leg?What Is Causing This Ulcer On My Leg?
May 31, 2018

What Is Causing This Ulcer On My Leg?

What is Causing This Ulcer on My Leg? Leg ulcers are an unfortunate complication of several medical conditions and can be a source of concern and morbidity for many patients. Approximately 80% of leg ulcers are venous ulcers, and is the most common type of ulcers that affect individuals. Venous ulcers, also called venous stasis ulcers, affect upwards of 1% of the population. They typically occur over bony areas, often above the ankle. They can take months to heal, even with aggressive wound therapy. Recurrence of the ulcers are common. In fact, an ulcer that occurs again in the same spot is highly suggestive of a venous ulcer.

What is Microneedling?What is Microneedling?
August 30, 2017

What is Microneedling?

Do you want a way to achieve glowing skin, improve your product penetration, and help fight the signs of aging? Are you afraid of “going under the knife” or having a laser procedure done that leaves you unable to go outside? Then microneedling may just be for you.

Why Did My Varicose Veins Come Back?Why Did My Varicose Veins Come Back?
August 11, 2017

Why Did My Varicose Veins Come Back?

Why Did My Varicose Veins Come Back? "I had my varicose veins treated years ago, and now they are back! I thought they were fixed!” I have heard this statement often enough in clinic. Maybe you are echoing those same thoughts. Wondering why your legs hurt again months, or maybe years after having treatments. Was treatment even beneficial? Why are there bulging veins again?

Why Did My Spider Vein Treatment Not Work?Why Did My Spider Vein Treatment Not Work?
July 28, 2017

Why Did My Spider Vein Treatment Not Work?

Help! My spider veins came back after they were treated! You decided to work up the nerve to do something about the spider veins on your legs. You went to get treatment, and you have a solution injected into your spider veins. In the office you see them seemingly disappear before your eyes. “This is great! Finally, they are going to go away!” you say to yourself. Maybe they asked you to wear compression hose for a couple weeks, maybe not. But one day you find yourself looking at your legs and realize with horror the veins came right back! What happened?

Left text
Right text
Caption
1 of 10
Loading...