Acne Treatments Lack Science

Common acne treatments aren’t backed by sufficient comparative studies on their safety and efficacy.

By | September 7, 2011

WIKIMEDIA COMMONS, GEORGE HENRY FOX

We’ve all seen the late-night infomercials for Proactive and other “miracle” acne products, but there’s actually very little evidence that they work, according to a new study published in The Lancet. The lack of studies that compare available acne treatments have forced agencies such as the Global Alliance to Improve Outcomes in Acne and the American Academy of Dermatology to issue guidelines based purely on expert opinions, not data, which hold the potential for conflicts of interest.

“The large number of products and product combinations, and the scarcity of comparative studies, has led to disparate guidelines with few recommendations being evidence-based,” lead author Hywel Williams from the University of Nottingham said in a press release. As a result of the dearth of clinical information available for both over-the-counter and prescription acne treatments, the Institute of Medicine, the health arm of the National Academies, has listed comparative acne therapy research as one of the top 100 targets for national research.

Furthermore, the use of antibiotics to treat acne raises concerns about the rising frequency of antibiotic resistance. Acne treatments tend to use low doses for extended periods of time—ideal conditions for the evolution of resistance among microbes. (Hat tip to Fierce Biotech.)

Add a Comment

Avatar of: You

You

Processing...
Processing...

Sign In with your LabX Media Group Passport to leave a comment

Not a member? Register Now!

LabX Media Group Passport Logo

Popular Now

  1. Running on Empty
    Features Running on Empty

    Regularly taking breaks from eating—for hours or days—can trigger changes both expected, such as in metabolic dynamics and inflammation, and surprising, as in immune system function and cancer progression.

  2. Athletes’ Microbiomes Differ from Nonathletes
  3. Mutation Linked to Longer Life Span in Men
  4. Gut Feeling
    Daily News Gut Feeling

    Sensory cells of the mouse intestine let the brain know if certain compounds are present by speaking directly to gut neurons via serotonin.

AAAS