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Z-ROC Dermatology

Cosmetic Dermatology & General & Surgical Dermatology located in Fort Lauderdale, FL

Acne can cause permanent redness and scarring, affecting the look and feel of your skin. Fortunately, Matthew Zarraga, DO and Khongruk Wongkittiroch, DO, at Z-ROC Dermatology in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, offer comprehensive solutions for acne, including laser treatment, microneedling, peels, and medication. Call or schedule an appointment online to take advantage of their experience in successfully treating acne with the latest techniques.

Acne Q & A

What is acne?

Acne is an extremely common skin problem in the United States, and you don’t have to be a teenager to experience it. Acne isn’t just pimples; it can present itself in several different ways, including:

  • Whiteheads
  • Blackheads
  • Raised, solid pimples without pus, called papules
  • Cysts
  • Nodules


It’s important to have the physicians at Z-ROC Dermatology evaluate your acne to get a proper treatment plan for the particular type you are experiencing.

What causes acne?

Acne erupts when your pores become clogged by dead skin cells and oil. The bacteria that naturally exists in your pores feed on the dead skin and oil, which can cause inflammation, resulting in the red lesions known as acne.

How is acne treated?

The first step in finding an effective treatment for acne is an evaluation from an experienced dermatologist like Dr. Zarraga or Dr. Wongkittiroch. They can assess the type of acne and customize a treatment plan to get rid of unsightly bumps and sores. Your treatment strategy may include one or more of the following:

  • Prescription medication
  • Acne laser and light treatment
  • Cleansers and degreasers
  • Oral antibiotics
  • Chemical peels
  • Facials

Topical retinoids (tretinoin, adapalene, tazarotene) are the mainstay of acne treatment as they can help reduce blackheads, whiteheads and decrease the oil content of the skin.  They can also help with hyperpigmentation, photodamage, and signs of aging (fine lines and wrinkles)

Start using this medication every other night or every third-night x 2 weeks, then increase to nightly. If you become too red or irritated, then take a few nights off and when the skin returns to normal use 3 -4 times a week as tolerated. The goal is to get to a point where you are using this medication nightly as this is one of the best treatments for acne.  

Apply this medication at night after washing your face. Place a pea size amount on your fingertip, mix it with 2-3 pumps of your night moisturizer and apply it all over your face. However, avoid applying the topical retinoid on the corner of the eyes, corner of the nose, and corner of the mouth. During the day, should wear a facial sunscreen as the product may make you sun-sensitive.

The main side-effects of this medication include skin dryness and irritation from the medication (redness, burning, and peeling).

It’s important to get treatment for acne as soon as possible to eliminate scarring left by constant eruptions.

How can I avoid acne breakouts?

Sweat is a major contributor to acne breakouts. Using a gentle cleanser after any strenuous physical activity is important — don’t pick one that is harsh or abrasive. Treating your skin roughly doesn’t reduce acne; it can actually make it worse.

You should also avoid touching your face to avoid acne flare-ups. This includes picking or popping your pimples. It may seem like this is the best way to get rid of an infection, but you may actually cause more scarring or make your pimples harder to heal.

Tanning and some medicines can also increase your chances of developing a problem with acne.

To explore your acne treatment options, call Z-ROC Dermatology or book an appointment online today.