Acne can be a problem not only for teens, but also for those patients well past their twenties, thirties and even their forties. Many patients continue to suffer from recurrent breakouts well into adulthood causing embarrassment, frustration and added stress in already busy lives. At The Menkes Clinic and Surgery Center, our approach to the treatment of acne starts with recognizing that each patient is an individual with unique needs. Our physicians evaluate each patient's lifestyle, personal goals and treatment preferences in order to formulate the most effective plan that will result in healthy, clear, and radiant skin. We are always ready to answer questions and provide the latest, scientifically-proven treatments for our patients.
Acne pimples can lead to unwanted imperfections in the skin, especially surface defects and discoloration. Acne scars commonly occur on the face, chest and back and may appear as:
- Shallow depressions or divots
- Deep, ice-pick indentations
- Firm, rubbery bumps or nodules
- Dark brown spots and discoloration
- Persistent pink or red blotches
In general, the deeper and larger the pimples, the greater the risk is for residual scarring. Therefore, early treatment of acne is ideal to prevent unwanted scars. We treat acne with oral antibiotics such as Accutane, topical medications and blue light therapy. For acne scarring we offer several treatments to help reduce the appearance of scarring, such as chemical peels and facials, laser treatments and microdermabrasion.
This oral medication is used in severe acne and often when other acne treatments have failed. Many dermatologists also support the use of Accutane for the treatment of lesser degrees of acne when the risk of physical or psychological scarring is present. As with all acne treatments, the use of Accutane is determined by considering a patient's acne severity as well as their individual needs. At The Menkes Clinic and Surgery Center, our board-certified dermatologists have decades of experience prescribing Accutane to acne patients and are extremely knowledgeable about its use. We have treated thousands of patients safely with Accutane.
Back and chest treatments
A series of chest and back treatments can be an excellent addition to your acne treatment regimen to help keep your skin smooth and free of blemishes. Our aesthetician can quickly remove blackheads, whiteheads and clogged pores in a single session. They can also gently extract acne lesions and follow this with a soothing steam treatment and masque to aerate and unclog pores. Chest and back acne treatments are often ordered by our doctors to help promote rapid clearing of acne lesions. A shorter version of this treatment which focuses mainly on the extraction of lesions is also available. The cost of these procedures are usually covered by insurance.
Oral antibiotics are highly effective in the management of inflammatory (non-blackhead) acne. The most commonly prescribed medications are in the tetracycline family, which includes both minocycline (Solodyn™, Minocin™) and doxycycline (Doryx™, Adoxa™, Monodox™). These antibiotics are typically given as a single dose each day and are rapidly eliminated from the body within 24 hours. They are not suitable for children younger than 10 years old because they may cause brown or gray staining of teeth.
- Highly effective for inflammatory or non-blackhead acne
- Most commonly used are minocycline, doxycycline
- Usually a single daily dose
- Rapidly eliminated from the body within 24 hrs
- May stain teeth in children younger than 10 years of age
Blue light therapy
In Blue Light Therapy, the blue part of the visible light spectrum is used to eliminate the bacteria that cause acne. When exposed to Blue Light Therapy, acne-causing bacteria (P.acnes) create free radicals which can turn around and kill the bacteria itself. Once the bacteria start to die off and lessen in numbers the body's immune system response diminishes, the inflammation lessens and the acne begins to clear up.
Fraxel technology has been proven in the ten plus years this treatment has been used in medical and cosmetic dermatology. Typically delivered in a series of sessions, Fraxel Dual administers laser energy to the skin, where it is absorbed into the deeper layers. Here, the cells are stimulated to produce increased amounts of collagen, which is necessary for healing. The effects of multiple treatments can be seen in the form of clearer skin with decreased acne scarring.
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL)
IPL is an abbreviation for Intense Pulse Light. It is a non-laser precision light generator that transmits an extremely bright pulse of white light through a hand piece with a smooth, flat glass surface that is held against the skin. The machine generates multiple wavelengths of light in pulses designed to break up small surface blood vessels, dissipate brown hyperpigmentation and reach deep down into the skin to stimulate the collagen-producing cells without damaging the outer layer. An IPL treatment is very effective at removing or softening acne scars. Generally, IPL treatment achieves desirable effects on the face, neck, chest and the back of hands. However, IPL may be used on most parts of the body, depending on the needs of the patient and the recommendation of your doctor.
SilkPeel Microdermabrasion is a non-invasive skin rejuvenation procedure for the body. It provides simultaneous exfoliation, evacuation and the delivery of skin specific infusion solutions under pressure to treat a range of skin types and conditions, including acne scars. Unlike traditional technologies that rely on messy crystals or other irritating particles, SilkPeel Microdermabrasion uses a diamond tip hand piece for uniform and precise exfoliation while delivering high performing topical solutions to the immediate abraded skin for optimal results.
At The Menkes Clinic and Surgery Center, Dr. Menkes and Dr. Soohoo use different strengths of Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA) to treat the skin, depending on the patient's needs. TCA is a non-toxic chemical which has been used to perform skin peels for many years. TCA chemical peels have the advantage of creating a fresh, natural appearing complexion, while preserving the normal skin color. For this reason, they are often referred to as "freshening peels".
There are many treatment options available for patients with acne. In the topical treatment of acne, patients use products and medications that are applied directly onto the skin's surface. This is often an important part of a successful acne treatment regimen. At The Menkes Clinic and Surgery Center, we provide a comprehensive and personalized approach to each patient with the goal of formulating the most effective acne treatment plan.
Topical medications for acne may include:
- Benzoyl peroxide
- Salicylic acid
- Topical Dapsone
The team at The Menkes Clinic and Surgery Center can help you manage acne and get back to a better quality of life. Contact us for your consultation for acne treatment.