Acne

Elizabeth Piantanida, MD -  - Board Certified Dermatologist

Skin MD Colorado

Elizabeth Piantanida, MD

Board Certified Dermatologist located in Colorado Springs, CO

Acne Specialist
Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, affecting up to 50 million people. It’s painful and embarrassing for those affected, and it can even leave scars if it isn’t treated properly. Dr. Elizabeth Piantanida, who practices in Colorado Springs, Colorado, offers a range of treatment options if you are struggling with acne. To explore your acne treatment options, please contact Skin MD Colorado to make an appointment with Dr. Piantanida. Online appointment scheduling is available.

Acne Q & A

by Elizabeth Piantanida, MD

What is acne?

Acne, which is formally known as acne vulgaris, causes unsightly and/or painful lesions on the skin. Several different types of lesions may appear if you have acne, including:

  • Cysts, which are painful lumps that develop deep in the skin, that are filled with pus, and that may leave scars
  • Nodules, large solid lumps that are painful and develop within hair follicles
  • Pustules, sore bumps that are red with white pus at the top
  • Papules, small raised bumps that may be tender or red
  • Comedones, which are whiteheads or blackheads that form when the flow of oil is blocked near the surface of your skin

All types of acne are most common in teenagers and young adults, but the condition can occur at any age.

What causes acne?

Several factors can contribute to an acne breakout, including inflammation, excessive oil, clogged pores, and bacteria.

In many cases, acne develops because of sebum, which is an oil your body produces to keep the skin moist. During adolescence, the flow of sebum increases. This often leads to clogged pores.

How do you treat acne?

The goal of acne treatment is to reduce inflammation, fight bacterial infection, speed up skin cell turnover, and/or reduce your oil production, depending on the type of acne you have. Some of the treatments Dr. Piantanida may recommend include:

  • Antibiotics, which reduce bacteria and bring down inflammation
  • Prescription topical medication, which may prevent blocked pores and promote cell turnover
  • Laser or light-based therapies, which improve the appearance of scars and prevent the development of new acne
  • Oral contraceptives, which may control oil production in women
  • Accutane, which treats cystic acne or stubborn acne

If your acne is mild, you may be able to control it with over-the-counter treatments that kill bacteria and help your dead skin slough off faster. Dr. Piantanida helps you decide on the best treatment options based on the specifics of your condition.

Can you treat acne scars?

In some cases, severe acne leaves scars behind. Dr. Piantanida offers cosmetic dermatology services to help patients with acne scars.

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