conglobata: A very severe type of acne in which nodules are
connected beneath the skin surface to other nodules or acne lesions.
mechanica: Form of acne that develops in response to heat,
covered skin, constant pressure, and/or repetitive friction against
vulgaris: The medical term for common acne, which is
characterized by the presence of one or more of the following:
blackheads, whiteheads, papules and pustules.
to the hormones that stimulate the sebaceous glands to create sebum.
Hormones that stimulate sebaceous glands in addition to other
effects on the body. Present in both males and females, androgens
are responsible for physical maturation in males and therefore occur
in much higher levels in males. Males tend to have more severe acne
Antimicrobial: Agent, such as a medication, that kills or
A non-inflammatory acne lesion that is filled with excess oil
and dead skin cells. Blackheads are also called “open comedomes”
because the surface of the skin remains open.
Rash characterized by many comedones that develops from exposure to
chlorinated chemicals or herbicides.
comedo: A whitehead; a non-inflammatory comedo with white
Comedo (plural: comedones): An acne lesion.
Likely to cause comedones.
Dermatologic surgery: Deals with the diagnosis and treatment
of medically necessary and cosmetic conditions of the skin, hair,
nails, veins, mucous membranes and adjacent tissues by various
surgical, reconstructive, cosmetic and non-surgical methods. This
includes laser surgery, cryosurgery, chemical surgery, aspirational
surgery and excisional surgery. The purpose of dermatologic surgery
is to repair and/or improve the function and cosmetic appearance of
The tiny shaft in the skin through which a hair grows, and sebum is
excreted from sebaceous glands to the surface of the skin.
Chemical substances produced by the body that, depending on the
hormone, govern many body processes. Certain hormones cause physical
maturation during puberty. These are the ones implicated in acne.
A word that means "causing inflammation." In acne,
"inflammatory" is usually used to describe lesions that are inflamed
by chemical reactions or bacteria in clogged follicles.
Potent systemic medication used to treat severe forms of acne. Due
to potential birth defects, a woman must not take this medication
while pregnant or breast feeding and must not become pregnant while
Large raised scar that spreads beyond the size of the original
Oily substances that include things like fats, oils and waxes. Sebum
is made up of lipids. A particular kind of lipid, free fatty acids,
are irritating to the skin.
flat spot or patch of skin that is not the same color as the
Substance that gives hair and skin its color.
The first stage of comedo formation; a comedo so small that it
can be seen only with a microscope.
Nodulocystic acne: A severe form
of acne that is characterized by numerous deep, inflamed bumps
(nodules) and large, pus-filled lesions that resemble boils (cysts).
The nodules tend to be tender when touched and feel firm. The severe
inflammation can cause the acne to become very red or even purple.
Scarring often results when the acne heals.
Noncomedogenic: Not likely to cause comedones.
Noninflammatory: In acne, comedones that are not associated
with redness in the skin.
A blackhead) a noninflammatory comedo with a dark top and firmly
inflammatory comedo that resembles a small, red bump on the skin.
Papulopustular: A type of acne characterized by the presence
of papules and pustules.
hyperpigmentation: Excessive skin darkening at places where
the skin was inflamed.
Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes): A normal
resident on the skin,
P. acnes will multiply rapidly in
clogged hair follicles where sebum is trapped.
The time of life when a child begins the physical maturation process
toward adulthood. Onset is usually in the early teens and is
accompanied by a large increase in hormone production.
An inflammatory comedo that resembles a whitehead with a ring of
redness around it.
A natural or synthetic substance derived from vitamin A.
glands: Glands in the skin that produce an oily substance
called sebum--these glands are the sites of acne lesions. Sebaceous
glands are attached to hair follicles and are found mostly on the
face, neck, back and chest.
oily substance produced by sebaceous glands.
Acne that develops from long-term use of corticosteroid medications.
Since this condition can develop, corticosteroid medications are
prescribed for a limited time.
therapy: Treatment that consists of taking medication
internally, such as in pill form or by injection or infusion.
blood cells: Components of the blood that help fight off
An acne lesion that forms when oil and skin cells block the
opening of a hair follicle. For this reason, whiteheads are called
content solely developed by the American Academy of Dermatology