All About The Causes, Triggers, and Treatment for Cystic Acne

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Cystic acne is also called severe acne. They are large, painful, and pus-filled spots that develop on the skin. It is similar to those spots and pimples in mild or moderate acne that appears when your pores are clogged with dead skin cells. In cystic acne, there are bacteria that cause swelling and infection in your pores.

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It is quite common to develop acne at any age, but it usually develops in teenagers who are reaching the age of puberty and undergoing some hormonal changes. Although, acne is very common cystic acne is very rare.

It can be seen in people in the age group of 8 years or adults more than 50 years of age. It appears in the same areas as those normal acne i.e. on the face, chest, back, shoulders, and top of the arms.

It can be more commonly seen in men, but women also develop it. Women usually develop this cystic acne on the lower level of their face. You can talk to good clinical experts for this cystic acne treatment

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The symptoms of this cystic acne are very visible as you can see cysts and pustules all large and swollen. They can affect you in many ways as they might change the appearance of your face. Some of this cystic acne may appear large and can be quite painful.

If not treated, cystic acne can lead to:

  • Ice-pick scars (which are small but deep pits in the skin)
  • Shallow depressions
  • Hypertrophic scarring (raised, red scars)
  • Larger pits
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There are certain things or factors that can flare up the acne and its symptoms can get worse.

This includes:

  • Hormonal changes when you are in periods or are pregnant
  • Medications like steroids or lithium
  • Smoking
  • Putting pressure on that affected area

In such cases, it is always better to avoid these triggers and take proper precautions.


If you have cystic acne, then there are certain over-the-counter products that can help you treat them.

You can make an appointment with your doctor to treat this:

  • Oral antibiotics: This can be helpful in controlling the bacteria and reducing inflammation
  • Creams, lotions, and gels: They contain vitamin A called retinol that can work by unclogging the pores, and also support any antibiotics that are prescribed along with it
  • Isotretinoin: It is a tablet form of retinol that you might have to take for several months. They can clear out the condition and are very effective. But they are very powerful so can’t be prescribed for pregnant women
  • Spironolactone: It is good for water retention and works like a hormone blocker.

Remember, any of these acne treatments can take up to several months to see the improvements.

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You can lower the risk of developing cystic acne:

  • Use a mild foaming face cleanser and wash your face with lukewarm water.
  • Apply oil-free moisturizer
  • Use non-comedogenic makeup and facial products
  • Do not go to bed with makeup on
  • Do not touch your face with your hands every now and then
  • Do not pick or pop any pimples or scabs
  • Wash your hair regularly and keep oily hair away from your face
  • Make changes in your diet, especially when it comes to sugary and dairy products.

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