Prescription Acne Medicine
Topical Acne Medications: The most effective acne medications
are available only by physician prescription. Prescribed topical
medications include the topical antibiotics and topical retinoids.
Topical Acne Antibiotics: The antibiotics used topically
in treatment of acne are believed to be effective for reasons
in addition to anti-bacterial activity. Topical antibiotics alone
are not generally recommended. In fact, long-term use may increase
risk for antibiotic resistance in skin bacteria. They should be
used in combination with other topical agents. Prescription
antibiotic acne medicines include: Azelaic acid, Erythromycin,
Clindamycin, Tetracycline, and Sulfonamides.
Topical Retinoids: Retinoids are in the vitamin A family
of molecules and are very potent acne medicines. Risk for birth
defects is a major side effect of systemic retinoids; the risk
is much lower for topical retinoids but should be discussed with
the physician when a female acne medicine patient is pregnant
or likely to become pregnant. These medicines include: Tretinoin,
Adapalene, and Tazarotene.
Oral Acne Medicine Medications
Oral Antibiotics: Broad-spectrum antibiotics have been
a mainstay of systemic acne medicine therapy for moderate to severe
and persistent acne for many years. Numerous studies have provided
evidence supporting the effectiveness of oral broad-spectrum antibiotics.
The acne medicine activity of oral antibiotics appears to include
physiologic effects in the sebaceous follicle as well as reduction
of bacterial populations in the follicle. The common oral acne
medicine medications are: Oral tetracycline, erythromycin, minocycline,
Hormonal Therapy Acne Medicine
The purpose of hormonal therapy is to block or lessen acne-promoting
effects of androgenic hormones.
Estrogen, as an acne medicine, counteracts effects of
androgenic hormones and decreases sebum secretion in the sebaceous
Corticosteroids may be prescribed for short courses to
treat very severe acne. Corticosteroids are a funny acne medicine
because they can cause steroid acne if you use them for
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