A new guideline aims to help Canadian physicians, nurses and pharmacists treat children and adults with acne, a disease that can severely affect quality of life. The guideline, published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal), updates the previous guidance published 15 years ago.
"With early diagnosis, treatment of active lesions and prevention of adverse potential sequelae (e.g., scarring, dyspigmentation and psychosocial impact), the health of the many Canadians with acne may be improved," writes Dr. Jerry Tan, Department of Medicine, Western University, London, Ontario, with coauthors.
It is estimated that 85% of young people aged 12-24 years have acne and it can persist well into adulthood. Acne can result in anxiety and depression and permanent scarring of the skin.
A team of dermatologists from across the country reviewed the latest evidence and provide treatment recommendations for 3 acne presentations: comedonal acne (characterized by blackheads and whiteheads); mild-to-moderate papulopustular acne (superficial red blemishes and pimples); and severe inflammatory acne (deep pustules or nodules). The guideline developers did not include neonatal or infant acne, late-onset acne, acne rosacea and other variant forms.
As provincial plans do not cover many of the recommended therapies, the authors state that cost to patients should be a factor in deciding treatment. A list of treatment costs by province is included in Appendix 5.
To ensure health care professionals are aware of the guidelines, the authors are creating recommendation summaries for physician, nursing, pharmacy and other medical organizations.
"We hope that these guidelines will help health care professionals address the common scourge of acne in patients of various ages," states Dr. Tan.
Materials provided by Canadian Medical Association Journal. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.
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