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The problem with Acne Pimples | The Aesthetic Studio Clinic Singapore

July 17, 2011

ACNE (Acne Vulgaris) which includes blackheads, whiteheads and also deeper acne cysts and nodules, is not only a medical problem, but can deeply affect the psychological well-being of those affected. And unlike other cosmetic problems, affects young males and females in equal proportion.

Psychological effects can result in:

  1. Reduced Self-Confidence and Self-Esteem
  2. Social withdrawal from friends and social events
  3. Rebelliousness and repressed anger
  4. Over-compensation with preoccupation with skin and outward appearance; or
  5. Total lack of care towards their appearance
  6. Negative Self-Image and Poor body posture

The male hormone testosterone plays a significant part in seborrhoea and problem skin, and therefore affects males more than females. As many as seven out of ten young men are affected acne, seborrhoea and pimples. Females can sometimes benefit from taking the oral contraceptive pill to improve their hormonal balance and clear their acne, but this would not be an option in young men whose sexual development may be affected.

Isotretinoin (Roaccutane/ Accutane) is an oral medication (tablet) that is sometimes prescribed for recalcitrant Severe nodular cystic acne that does not respond to topical treatments. It has many significant potential unwanted side-effects that include liver dysfunction, psychiatric disturbances and the development of fetal abnormalities (requires caution when used in women of child-bearing age).

Broad spectrum Oral Antibiotics such as tetracycline, erythromycin or minocycline are sometimes used in severe cases of acne, but may not be suitable for all patients.  Tetracycline for example may cause staining of teeth in very young patients and may also not be taken by pregnant women.

Topical (applied to the skin) Medications remain the mainstay of treatment for most patients suffering from Acne. These include Topical Antibiotics, Retinoids, Benzoyl Peroxide, Salicyclic Acid, Sulfur Preparations and Azelaic Acid, among others.

Retinoids (Retin-ADifferinIsotrexin and Tazorac etc) are Vitamin A derivatives that improve acne by normalizing the lifecycle of follicle cells and aids in the generation the new cells that restore the dead ones. Vitamin A provides a temporary boost in the production of collagen and can give the skin a more young-looking appearance.

The most suitable prescription acne treatments has to be individualized and is determined by various factors including skin type, type of acne, occupational needs, sun expected sun exposure, lifestyle, gender, age etc. This is best determined after consultation with an experienced doctor.

At The Aesthetic Studio Clinic and Surgery, patients will undergo a through consultation and skin examination by our doctors to determine the best plan for each individual patient. These plans may include optimizing their skin care regimen (Cleanser, Toner, Moisturiser, Sunblocks), Microdermabrasion, Specialized Chemical Peels and Laser or Blue light Treatments. Our goals for treatment are the rapid control of Acne pimples, improving the skin quality, long term maintainence of skin clarity and preventing disfiguring scars.


Acne and Pimples not only causes temporary disfigurement (pigmentation, marks, cysts, blackheads), and behavioral problems in teenagers and young people, but if left untreated or inappropriately managed will cause permanent scars and textural irregularities of the skin.

Both Color changes and Textural changes can be distressing. The Textural irregularities associated with Acne Scars are often classified as rolling, ice-pick, shallow or deep box-car type scars depending on their appearance, and often these multiple scar types will co-exist. Treatment of Acne Scars therefore often require a combination of treatments including:

  1. Ablative Skin Resurfacing (MicroLaserPeels, Laser Fractional Resurfacing, Dermabrasion)
  2. Non-ablative Resurfacing
  3. Excision and Subcision (release of scar tethering)
  4. Dermal Fillers
  5. CROSS (chemical reconstruction of skin scars)
  6. Techniques for treating Color changes (redness or pigmentation).

At The Aesthetic Studio Clinic and Surgery, Our doctors will design a treatment plan tailored to individual needs, lifestyles and budget – geared towards delivering safe effective results in the shortest possible time. (e.g Patients who cannot afford long down-times can have a plan based on multiple non-ablative treatments).

Read more about our various Acne and Acne Scar treatments, in more detail, in our future posts.

Whether you are troubled by Active Acne or old Acne Scars treatments, make an appointment with our Doctor and find out how our treatments can help you! (For Appointments, call: +65 6440-1200)

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