Mercer Island - Seattle - Bellevue
There are many types of acne and many factors that contribute to its stubborn flairs and persistence. Facial acne, back acne, teenage acne, adult acne, acne of pregnancy and acne rosacea are different problems and require different approaches. Not only do different patients respond differently to standard treatment regimens, but patients will all have different time constraints, schedules, and different levels of willingness to participate in some regimens that may require time for repeat visits. We are experts and experienced in all types of acne care. Our approach will always be to customize and tailor treatment to an individual patient's situation.
For many, a discussion of commonly available acne cleansers, home regimens, and and over-the-counter products will suffice. For others, prescription strength cleansers, Vitamin A derivatives (retinoids), and topical or oral antibiotics are required.
Medical Procedures to Get Rid of Acne
Acne begins as a plugged pore. Grime and oil may contribute, but for the most part, plugging is caused by dead skin cells lining our pores that fail to shed spontaneously. Age and hormones contribute to conditions that make the outer layer of skin cells "sticky" and more likely to form plugs within the pore producing white heads (closed comedones) and blackheads (open comedones). The plugs cause a backup of natural skin oil (sebum) beneath the skin surface that leaks from within the follicle. Bacteria break down these oils to irritating substances that cause the troubling pimples and blemishes.
- PDT Acne Treatment
- Microlaser Acne Treatment Peels
- Microdermabrasion Acne Treatment
- Blue Light Acne Treatment
- Surgery and Acne Extractions
The procedure involves mechanical exfoliation of dead skin cells using a powerful current of air that carries fine crystal. The crystals and dead skin cells are vacuumed back, leaving smoother, brighter skin and sweeping plugs from the surface of the skin.
These treatments combine a spa-like pampering with precision extractions (removing plugs). By keeping pores open, we prevent oil backup that can lead to pimples, nodules, and cysts. These treatments are generally quick (about 30 minutes), comfortable, and highly effective.
For patients willing to spend a few days with red skin and some prominent peeling, much like a sunburn, our Erbium Laser can remove old skin to precision depths. The deeper we go, the better the result but the longer you'll note redness and peeling. It's all about you... we'll discuss your schedule and your tolerance and customize the treatment.
Do you feel like your acne tends to clear during the summer months, or when you travel off-season to a warmer climate? Unlike ultraviolet rays, wavelengths of light in the blue region of the color spectrum are not harmful. When we are exposed to those blue wavelengths, our skin activates a natural chemical that destroys bacteria. The destruction of bacteria helps in reducing the breakdown of oil and resulting inflammation associated with acne. Blue light by itself can be very helpful in treating acne. Our regimen involves twice weekly exposure of approximately 15 minutes, tapering after several weeks with improvement.
Photodynamic therapy involves the use of light combined with a chemical treatment. Our blue light treatments can be power charged as well when used in combination with ALA (aminolevulinic acid). ALA is a natural compound found in the body and used in the natural synthesis of hemoglobin. When the compound is applied to the skin and exposed to blue light, it is activated, releasing energy to surrounding tissue which results in reduction in skin bacterial, reduction in pore size and shrinking of oil glands and oil production. Our protocol consists of 2-3 treatments at 2-3 week intervals and generally results in very substantial reduction of blackheads, whiteheads and inflammatory lesions as well. The downside of this treatment is the redness and peeling that are very prominent for 4-5 days following the treatment and the need to remain indoors completely away from natural light for twenty four hours after the treatment.