Acne Treatments

At Schweiger Dermatology Group, we take a comprehensive approach to acne treatments. Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, affecting up to 50 million Americans annually. Approximately 85 percent of people between the ages of 12 and 24 experience acne. Acne also affects up to 15 percent of women in their 30s and 40s.

Schweiger Dermatology Group providers treat acne with a combination of at-home care and in-office treatments, including oral or topical antibiotics, oral contraceptives, Isotretinoin (Formerly Accutane®), topical retinoids, laser and light treatments, medical acne facial treatments, and cortisone injections.

Oral or Topical Antibiotics

Both over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription-strength medications are effective in treating acne. Topical antibiotics kill bacteria on your skin, while oral antibiotics kill the bacteria in your skin pores. Antibiotics are often used to treat acne when persistent flare-ups are related to bacteria and cause swelling, irritation, or risk of scarring.

One new antibacterial agent, topical dapsone (Azone®), has been specifically marketed as an adult acne product. This is an excellent prescription option for adults with sensitive skin who do not tolerate benzoyl peroxide products.


Spironolactone is a diuretic (water pill) that also can block certain male hormones (or androgens) from interacting with the sweat glands in the face that trigger adult acne breakouts. This medicine can be used on its own or in combination with topicals to address the underlying cause of acne in many women.

Oral Contraceptives Can Help Treat Adult Acne

Oral contraceptives are effective in treating adult acne in female patients. The FDA has approved three birth control pills for treating acne, including Ortho Tri-Cyclen, Estrostep, and YAZ. They all contain a combination of both estrogen and progesterone. This combination works best to lower the amount of androgens in your body and reduce sebum production and pustule formation. Caution should be taken in using these medications if there is an increased risk of blood clots or in smokers, where the risk of clots is increased.

Isotretinoin (Formerly Accutane®)

Schweiger Dermatology Group providers have successfully used Isotretinoin medication (the original brand, Accutane®, is no longer on the market) to treat deep and painful acne cysts. When other treatment options do not work, this option has been known to diminish or clear severe acne and prevent new acne scars.

Topical Retinoids

Topical retinoids, also called retinoic acid or vitamin A acid, are prescribed to treat blackheads, whiteheads, and acne. Topical retinoids boost the production of new skin cells, which push the dead cells and trap sebum from blocked pores. Sometimes, topical retinoids are prescribed along with antibiotics or benzoyl peroxide to treat acne.

Laser and Light Treatments for Acne

Laser and light treatments, such as red or blue light therapy, Photodynamic Therapy (PDT), and Isolaz laser treatments, effectively treat acne. These non-invasive laser treatments decrease the p. acnes bacteria, halt sebum production, and are anti-inflammatory. The Isolaz laser treatment uses a gentle vacuum to clear out the pores and uses light to kill the p. acnes bacteria inside the pores.

Medical Acne Facial Treatments

Medical acne facial treatments may be a great option for treating acne and preventing future outbreaks.

Our skilled medical estheticians specialize in treating and clearing acne blemishes with a combination of treatment options, including steaming and deep cleaning, a chemical peel, extraction, or microdermabrasion. Your esthetician will recommend the best treatment for you based on your skin type and the severity of your acne. Whatever treatment you have, we ensure that your skin will be thoroughly cleaned deep into the pores, leaving it feeling softer, smoother, and healthier.

Depending on your skin type and the frequency of your acne outbreaks, we recommend regular medical facials to keep your skin as clean and healthy as possible. We always encourage patients to see us for a facial and/or extraction rather than attempting to “pop” their zits, as popping pimples can lead to scarring and even infection.

All treatments are performed under the direction and guidance of a board-certified dermatologist.

Best Quick Fix for Adult Acne

Adult acne can strike at any time. For most adults, getting a pimple is just as embarrassing as when teenagers are hit with a breakout. For adult acne, the best quick fix is an in-office cortisone injection (a diluted form of triamcinolone). This injection helps decrease inflammation and dramatically reduces the size of the acne lesion.

Cortisone injections are the most effective method of getting rid of acne quickly. While there may be some redness at the injection site, there is no downtime. The medication injected into the pimple is anti-inflammatory and flattens it out in 48 hours.

Generally, with cystic acne, cortisone injections alone are not enough. We highly recommend a multi-faceted approach to include such treatments as chemical peels, PDT, laser and blue light, and prescription medications to best combat the effects of a chronic acne condition.

Acne Treatments Near You in NY, NJ, PA, CT, FL, IL, MN and MO

At Schweiger Dermatology Group, our experienced, board-certified dermatologists offer customized treatment plans for acne.

Check out our Before and After Photos of patients we have helped with acne.

For appointments, call Schweiger Dermatology Group at (844) DERM-DOC.

To find a location near you, check out our location pages. We look forward to working together to find the best acne treatment for your skin!

About Schweiger Dermatology Group

Schweiger Dermatology Group was founded to help make excellent dermatology care accessible throughout the Northeast. In 2010, Dr. Eric Schweiger started the practice with a single location in Midtown Manhattan. When he saw the need for high-quality dermatology care that did not require weeks or months of waiting to see a qualified provider, his vision of a multi-location practice was born.

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