Click here to read what one of our practitioners has to say about her own experience with acne
What is acne?
Primarily a hormonal condition driven by male or ‘androgenic’ hormones, acne is a localized skin inflammation produced by an over activity of the oil glands at the base of hair follicles. It is characterized by the appearance of skin lesions as a result of folliculitis, an inflammation and subsequent infection of follicular pores (hair outlet). Both men and women have testosterone circulating in the blood, but in the acne sufferer, testosterone has a profound effect on the skin.
Typically presents in adolescence, acne affects 80% of this population group due to an interaction between hormones, sebum and bacteria living on the skin or inside of it and also in the hair. During puberty, acne increases the activity of the sebaceous glands of the skin with an excessive sebum production. Scaly debris and bacteria can accumulate in the pores of the skin forming a comedo, which prevents the sebum from hair follicles flow through the pores. If the blockage is incomplete blackheads are formed; if complete, white spots appear.
Acne manifests clinically with different types of injuries, and several of them may occur in the same patient. These lesions may be inflammatory and non-inflammatory. Bacteria normally present in the skin, called P.acnes, multiplies in the clogged follicle and results in inflammation. The bacteria break down the oil to very inflammatory chemicals which cause redness, pus formation and pain. If the inflammation is right near the surface, you get a pustule; if it’s deeper, a papule (pimple); deeper still and it’s a cyst. If the pore of the affected hair follicle is closed to the surface, the result is a “whitehead.” If the pore is wide open, oil becomes oxidized (that is, acted on by oxygen in the air), the oil changes from white to black, and the result is a “blackhead.”
Acne can leave scars which are permanent. Acne attacks two structures: 1 the pore; blocking it and 2 the sebaceous gland -more oil is produced, which gives an oily complexion
If the inflammation is deep and severe, or if the spot is squeezed and pus bursts deep into the skin rather than onto the surface then this inflammation and infection could result in scarring and cyst formation.
What treatments are available?
At the Angel Laser Clinic we have a team of 2 Dermatologists, 2 Doctors and 5 laser practitioners. We can offer expert advice and a range of treatment options from medication to laser treatment.
- Laser treatment: Regenlite pulse dye laser, Revlite laser and blue light therapy
- Topical treatment: Antibiotics, benzoyl peroxide, retinoids, salicylic or azelaic acid
- Systemic treatment: Oral antibiotics, oral isotretinoin, hormonal treatments.
What is Regenlite?
Regenlite is a novel laser technology that enables the management of inflammatory skin conditions without any discomfort, downtime or residual cell necrosis. It offers rapid results within 2-4 weeks after single treatments, results lasting 12+ weeks on all grades of acne
Regenlite (also known as Nlite) is a laser which was the first laser to receive full FDA clearance for the treatment of inflammatory acne. Following a clinical study by Professor Chu published in the Lancet; Regenlite is proven to be comparable if not superior to existing medication for the treatment of acne with no side effects and long term results. In this study 87% of patients achieved significant improvement.
How does it work?
Regenlite delivers a specific wavelength of laser light into the skin which both targets the bacteria which causes infection and at the same time stimulates the skins immune systems to reduce inflammation and repair the damage caused by infection. Regenlite can also promote the production of collagen so can also improve the skin structure and texture and smooth scarring.
By using patented laser cavity design, Regenlite initiates a biostimulatory effect in the tissue that support down-regulation of any localised inflammatory cascade and resolve active dermatological disorder.
This unique biostimulatory effect in the tissue enhances the skins wound healing response over and above the normal levels of response without having to create a trauma unlike the mechanism of most laser and light therapies. And everything with no pain or side effects
Is it painful?
No, Regenlite uses low level laser energy and is therefore pain free. You will feel a mild warming as the laser passes over the skin.
Is it safe?
Yes. Regenlite is completely safe. Many clinical studies have been published proving both safety and efficacy.
How many treatments are required?
For acne treatment 6 treatments are recommended, one every two to four weeks. We can then assess as to whether additional treatments would be beneficial. The improvement can normally be seen after 3 months. Most patients with acne will need periodic treatment every 9 to 12 months. You may also be recommended specific skincare creams to assist in unblocking pores and clearing the skin.