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Information and advice for the treatment of acne vulgaris

Acne vulgaris or acne is a bacterial skin condition that is particularly common in younger people, but it can affect people of all ages. It's a mostly inflammatory skin condition that can cause spots on the skin. Breakouts mostly develop on the face, but the back and chest may also be affected. This condition is largely the result of hormonal changes, which is why it's more common after puberty or at certain points during a woman's menstrual cycle. Most people who suffer from acne tend to stop experiencing outbreaks during their 20s, but some are affected well beyond this point.

Luckily, acne doesn't have to be a lifetime problem, especially with targeted treatments that can help deal with the causes of this condition and improve the appearance of your skin. euroClinix offers three options to help treat acne: Minocin, Oxytetracycline and Dianette. Simply complete the consultation forms that makes out part of the ordering process and include an image of an affected area of skin so that our doctor can make sure that the treatment you have chosen is right for you. If our doctor is satisfied that you can safely take it, they will issue a prescription and your order will be shipped from our pharmacy straight to you.

Content reviewed on 19-03-21
Dr. Anand Abbot Independent Medical Advisor (GMC Reg: 4307024)

Available Treatment(s)

Pack of 28 Oxytetracycline 250mg tablets
Oxytetracycline 4.7(38 Reviews)
    • Clinically proven to treat acne in just 10 weeks
    • Taken orally twice daily
    • Available in a 250mg dose
More Info
Prices start from £49.99
Dianette to treat acne
Dianette to treat acne 4.9(164 Reviews)
    • Has an anti-androgen effect which can treat acne and hirsutism in women
    • Helpful in regulating periods and alleviating PMS symptoms
    • Contains ethinylestradiol and cyproterone acetate
More Info
Prices start from £39.99
Duac once daily 10mg/g + 50mg/g gel 50g
Duac 4.9(15 Reviews)
    • Effective gel acne treatment
    • Treats mild to moderate acne
    • Kills bacteria and prevents it from spreading
More Info
Prices start from £34.99

What is acne?

Acne has many names, spots, pimples, zits, blemishes, comedones and acne (acne vulgaris) but all can result in lack of confidence in those that have it. Acne occurs when the sebaceous glands become blocked by dirt, grease and dead skin cells.

Acne commonly affects the face, but it can affect other parts of the body too and if left untreated can lead to lifelong scarring. The back, neck and chest are other places where acne can present which can limit the type of clothing and even places that people with the condition go to such as swimming baths and beaches where the affected areas are on show.There are different types of spots that can attribute to acne including blackheads, whiteheads, pustules and even cysts which can all be treated by using clinically proven prescription medications like Oxytetracycline, Minocin, Dianette for acne and Duac. Each treatment contains medication that is prescription strength but you don't have to make an appointment to visit your GP to obtain it.

Symptoms of acne?

Although there are conditions that can cause spots, acne has specific characteristics that distinguish the condition from other types of spots. They are:

  • Spots, bumps, pimples and nodules that present most commonly on the face, back and chest that feel sensitive when touched
  • Oily/greasy skin due to the sebaceous glands being overactive
  • Blackheads and/or whiteheads

However, acne can take on more than just the appearance of red spots on the skin surface. Other forms of acne include whiteheads, papules, pustules, blackheads, nodules and cysts

What causes acne?

As already mentioned, this infection tends to appear most commonly on areas where sebaceous glands are present in large numbers. This is because these glands produce sebum, which is a natural substance that helps moisturise and protect the skin.

However, if too much sebum is produced, it can cause skin to become greasy, resulting in pores becoming blocked and acne to form. Excess sebum production is therefore often associated with androgens, which are male hormones, as they can influence sebaceous gland activity.

Changes in androgen levels can occur as a result of puberty, pregnancy or menstruation. Cushing's syndrome and polycystic ovary syndrome can also be causes of acne, though this is more rare.

Medications can also influence hormone levels, such as oral contraceptives or topical steroid creams. Some cosmetics can have an effect on the skin as well.

Preventing acne

There are no specific ways to prevent acne, but there are some measures that can be taken to reduce the likelihood of acne breakouts. These include:

  • Washing the face at least twice a day, especially after exercising or partaking in activities where dirt can get into the pores.
  • Do not over wash as this can make the problem worse as the sebaceous glands will attempt to replace what has been removed.
  • Try not to over touch affected areas so as not to make the infection worse
  • Avoid make up and products that can block the pores before going to bed

Be careful in the type of skin products which are used, checking whether they are noncomedogenic or nonacnegenic, as they are less likely to clog pores. Bare in mind that over-cleanliness can antagonise sebum production on the skin.

Treating acne

Acne can be treated in a number of different ways, and the choice is largely determined by the severity of the infection. The most commonly used treatments for acne are those that are available over the counter and usually include creams, lotions, washes, soaps or gels that usually contain alpha hydroxyl acids, benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or sulphur. These treatments can be very effective in managing mild forms of this condition, but for more serious cases prescription medications can be used.

For milder forms of acne such as a few spots as a teenager, menstruation or temporary periods of stress can be helped by contraceptive pills such as Dianette. In cases where preventative measures, contraceptive pills and over the counter medications have not worked prescription medication will be necessary to treat acne successfully. Oxytetracycline, Minocin, Dianette and Duac are all prescription treatments to help treat acne by reducing the amount of sebaceous fluid produced, thus stopping acne from worsening.

Prescription treatments at a glance
Oxytetracycline 10 week tablet treatment taken twice daily for treatment of bacterial acne
Minocin Oral antibiotic treatment for acne vulgaris.
Dianette for acne Hormonal treatment that also acts as a contraceptive pill to treat female acne caused by hormone imbalance
Duac Gel acne treatment to kill the infection causing bacteria and prevent spreading

How to obtain prescription treatment for acne

If you have tried over the counter methods and have taken preventative measures but find that your acne is still not clearing up, you can purchase prescription treatment for acne online without having to visit your doctor. As with all prescription medications, they must first be signed off by a doctor, which is why a short online consultation is necessary. This is to ensure that the treatment you choose is suitable for you. Once this has been agreed, your order will be dispatched and sent to you the very same day. You can receive your prescription the very next day so that your treatment can begin immediately.

For more in depth information on each of the acne treatments we provide please visit the product pages. This will help you decide which treatment is best for your type of acne so your order can be placed and dispatched.

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