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Acne and its treatment

Common acne (acne vulgaris) is a very common skin condition where 85% of adults till 24 years and 50% over 25 years of age encounter it. Acne is a chronic skin problem that causes psychological discomfort. Adult acne (pimples), consisting of a growing share of the population, usually progresses from a chronic form. Most people who have this problem do not achieve desired results using current pharmaceutical products.

Low susceptibility to drug treatment, a recurring acne problem, ineffective common acne treatment, an increase in propionebacterium (one of the common causes of acne), antibiotic resistance (from 20% in 1978 to 62% in 1996), side effects of antibiotics, retinoids, and other medicaments that are used for acne treatment have pushed science forward in search of more advanced methods for acne treatment.

Our center specialists tailor individual acne treatment programs. Today our center can offer a wide range of acne treatment means, from traditional pharmaceutical to the most modern ones, employing light therapy (including intense pulse light (IPL)), or a combination of these treatments.

Using light therapy significant changes in acne treatment have been achieved - inflammatory acne cells decrease by 80 % what leads to rejuvenation of skin color, its elasticity, immune properties, appearance and skin.

What is acne?


Acne - is chronic inflammation of the skin sebaceous gland and upper follicle of the hair. Acne may vary in severity - from subtle skin dysfunction to severe inflammation accompanied by nodules, cystic forms and infiltrates. Purulence, black acne (comedones), firm skin bumps (papules), painful red nodules and bigger in size pus filled tumours (cystic acne) tend to appear on the skin of the face, neck, back and shoulders, which are affected by acne. If they are not treated for a long time they may leave permanent hole-shaped scars; thus, acne treatment is necessary to avoid such consequences.

How does acne appear?

Comedogenesis - appearance of comedones
Suffering from acne, keratinocytes (epidermal cells) don’t separate from the skin, but stick together and block hair follicle, preventing fat secreted by glands from reaching the surface. Accumulated fat solidifies and forms a follicle of white and black acne - comedones (blackheads).

Bacterial colonization
Propionebacterium acne – bacteria that constantly reside on the surface of the skin and colonize blocked follicles.

Acne and pustules raise due to the increased activity of skin sebaceous glands. For some reasons, sebaceous glands become over-sensitive to enlarged testosterone levels, thus releasing much more fat and becoming more sticky than usual; this clogs follicles and stimulates bacteria (Propionebacterium Acne) to reproduce.

The inflammatory process
Inflammation and red purulent pimples are the result of interaction of excessive fat and bacteria. Chronic inflammatory process is manifested.

Where does acne appear?
Acne can occur in different parts of the body - the face, neck, scalp, shoulders, chest, back, arms and legs.

How to treat acne?
Acne treatment is difficult and not always successful. The most commonly applied treatment is a combined drug therapy - oral antibiotics, contraceptives, synthetic retinoid (Roaccutane) and local medications. Acne drug treatment is often short-term and does not lead to satisfactory results; in addition to that, systematic use of medication tends to lead to certain side effects. With the appearance of light therapy, a significant positive shift in acne treatment was achieved, leading to far more effective and faster results.

How does light therapy in the treatment of acne? 

Acne treatmentPropionebacterium bacteria emit light sensitive coproporphyrin III and protoporphyrin in an endogenous way. Light therapy rays stimulate porphyrins and, as a result, they release intracellular O2, which causes bacterial cell death. This way the inflammatory process is eliminated.

Clinical trials show that the use of light therapy has improved acne (by approximately 80%) even during cystic and severe inflammatory acne as well as in cases when there was no respond to retinoid treatment. Light therapy produces an effect of inflammation reduction that decreases erythema (redness), which is caused by common acne. With the decrease in inflammatory response, the probability of scarring is reduced. It is clinically proven that the light, which is used to treat acne, not only stimulates fibroblasts, but also increases collagen production and skin metabolism. Consequently, the skin becomes healthier and rejuvenated in the area affected by acne.

Light therapy mechanism also stimulates the immunological function of the skin. Owing to that, acne improvement continues for a long time after the last procedure is carried out.

In the case of severe acne, photodynamic therapy (PDT) in combination with the photosensitizing agent 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) can be employed; in that case a post-procedural time is possible. This should be discussed with a doctor.

Benefits of light therapy for acne treatment:

- Absence of erythema as well as pain sensation. That means that the procedure can be conducted at any convenient time without post-procedural period;
- Reduction of inflammatory lesions lasts up to 16 weeks after the acne treatment;
- More than 75% of patients regard the treatment as excellent;
- A non-invasive, relaxing procedure.

How is the light therapy performed?

Initially, the face of patients is cleaned. You are asked to put on goggles to protect your eyes. Depending on the skin area that has been damaged by acne, you are positioned in a way that seems comfortable for you. Each pulse of light treats a wide area of skin, and the procedure takes 20 - 30 minutes. The procedure is painless as well as relaxing. After the procedure, depending on the severity of acne, minimal erythema may appear (or not), that is why, the acne treatment can be administered even during a lunch break.

When is it forbidden to undergo light therapy for acne treatment?
This procedure is not performed to patients with certain diseases, such as porphyria, autoimmune diseases, for example, lupus, albinism and sun allergy).

How many procedures have to be carried out during acne treatment?
In order to achieve a therapeutic effect, a number of procedures is selected individually. On average, there are 8 treatments that are administered during 4 weeks.

Is the procedure painful?
Acne treatment is absolutely painless.

What to expect after the procedure? 

 Acne treatment procedure


Light therapy is non-invasive and safe for patients. Light stimulates cells without causing damage to the dermis and epidermis, that is why after the acne treatment there is no erythema, skin peeling, blisters, and post procedural period - the procedure can be conducted during working hours as well as the lunch break. In addition to being relaxing, light therapy treats large areas of the skin, for instance, the face and chest.

By applying light therapy, inflammatory acne lesions decrease on average by 81%. Patients notice a reduction of inflammatory lesions after 4 treatments (2 weeks after the treatment is started). Optimal results are achieved between 4 to 12 weeks after the last procedure is carried out. Light stimulates the immunological function of the skin and because of that acne is considered to be individual. Even if the disease is incurable, the ways to improve the patient’s comfort and overall condition are looked for.

Our advantages
  • Experienced specialists who work in university hospitals.

    You can choose the most convenient time for you when procedures should be carried out.

  • We avoid the effect of the conveyor (we dedicate as much time as it is needed). This way better acquaintance with the problem and more effective acne treatment are expected.
  • Find out the cost of acne treatment.