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Understanding and Treating Hormonal Acne in Women with PCOS

Acne is a common skin condition that affects millions of individuals worldwide. While acne can occur at any age, hormonal acne, often associated with conditions like PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), can be particularly frustrating for women. In this blog post, we will explore the connection between PCOS and hormonal acne, discuss how to identify acne, and provide insights into effective treatment options, including AviClear laser treatment.

Understanding Hormonal Acne and PCOS

Hormonal acne occurs due to imbalances in hormones, particularly androgens like testosterone. In women with PCOS, the hormonal imbalance can be more pronounced, leading to increased oil production, clogged pores, and subsequent acne breakouts. Identifying hormonal acne is crucial for effective treatment and management.

Identifying Hormonal Acne

1. Location: Hormonal acne typically appears on the lower face, chin, and jawline.

2. Breakout Patterns: Acne breakouts tend to be persistent and recurrent, with deep, cystic acne lesions that can be painful.

3. Oily Skin and Enlarged Pores: Excess sebum production can result in oily skin and visibly enlarged pores.

4. Hormonal Irregularities: Women with hormonal acne may experience irregular menstrual cycles or other hormonal disturbances.

5. Associated Symptoms: Unwanted hair growth, hair loss, and weight gain are commonly observed in women with PCOS and hormonal acne.

Treating Hormonal Acne

1. Consult a Physician: If you suspect hormonal acne or have been diagnosed with PCOS, it is essential to consult a primary care physician or dermatologist for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment plan.

2. Hormonal Therapy: Depending on the severity and underlying hormonal imbalance, your physician may recommend hormonal contraceptives or anti-androgen medications to regulate hormone levels and reduce acne.

3. Topical Treatments: Over-the-counter or prescription topical treatments containing ingredients like benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or retinoids can help reduce acne lesions and unclog pores.

4. Skincare Routine: Follow a gentle skincare routine that includes regular cleansing with mild, non-comedogenic products, and the use of oil-free moisturizers. Avoid harsh scrubbing or using abrasive products that may aggravate the skin.

5. Lifestyle Modifications: Certain lifestyle changes can help manage hormonal acne. These include adopting a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, reducing refined sugar and dairy intake, and engaging in regular exercise to improve overall hormonal balance.

6. Stress Management: Chronic stress can worsen hormonal imbalances. Incorporate stress management techniques such as mindfulness, meditation, or regular physical activity to reduce stress levels and improve skin health.

AviClear® Laser Treatment for Hormonal Acne

Another option for treating hormonal acne is AviClear® laser treatment. This innovative approach utilizes laser technology to target and address the underlying causes of acne, including excess oil production and inflammation. Here's what you need to know about AviClear® laser treatment:

- How it works: AviClear® laser treatment targets the sebaceous glands in the skin, reducing their size and activity. It also helps to destroy acne-causing bacteria and reduces inflammation. The laser energy is delivered in a controlled manner, specifically targeting the affected areas without causing harm to the surrounding skin.

- Benefits of AviClear® laser treatment: This treatment can provide significant improvement in hormonal acne, reducing the frequency and severity of breakouts. It can also help to minimize the appearance of acne scars and improve overall skin texture.

- Safety and effectiveness: AviClear® laser treatment is safe and well-tolerated, but it's always important to consult with a physician or skincare professional to determine if it's right for you. Three 30-minute sessions are generally recommended to see results.

- Combination approach: AviClear® laser treatment can be used in combination with other treatments mentioned earlier, such as hormonal therapy and skincare routines, to achieve comprehensive results.


Hormonal acne, especially in women with PCOS, can be a challenging condition to manage. However, with proper identification and a comprehensive treatment approach that includes medical intervention, skincare, lifestyle modifications, stress management, and potentially AviClear® laser treatment, it is possible to effectively manage hormonal acne and achieve clearer, healthier skin. Remember to consult with a healthcare professional to receive personalized advice and guidance on the best treatment options for your specific needs.

Cardona DPC and RefineMD Aesthetics is one of three clinics in the greater Jacksonville area to offer AviClear® laser treatments for the treatment of mild to severe acne. Learn more about AviClear® or contact us at 904-551-4625 to schedule your complimentary consult.

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