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Hi, I sincerely hope that you give this thread a chance and read until the end i am sure you will be glad you did.Thankyou.

This is my first post at healthboards, however i have been posting around the web for years, and have fully researched most of the current ideas about acne-genesis. I am training to (possibly) end up as a dermatologist and specialise in acne. I have also suffered from relatively sever acne for 9 years.

Firstly we are all in the same boat, we have all read about so many different regimes, drugs, supplements and alternative therapies. Secondly sweetjade is very intelligent and i recommend you check out many of her posts, if you want to skip doing the research for yourself.

I think there are two routes to take when it comes to treating acne, 1: treating the cause (liver, bowel, renal, etc detoxification) and 2: treating the symptoms.

Most 'alternative' therapies aim at the former, while orthodox medicine aims primarily at the latter. Most posts that you read will put more emphisis on the former. I argue that in diseases such as acne, the symptoms take on a special importance that doesn't exsist in many other conditions (that involve subtle hormonal and metabolic disorders).

What i mean is that the symptoms generate a certain level psychological distress that leads to the patient striving to find a cure. This primarily occurs during adolesance when the psyche is developing and is very vunerable, many patients end up with a degree of BDD (body-dysmorphic disorder). This is caused by a years of percieving themselves in a bad light, and at the end of the day our perceptions of reality IS our reality.

It is also true that once we believe something about our reality, (and ourselves) that thing will manifest, which provides evidence for our beliefs and so our beliefs get stronger. Thus it is a feed forward loop.

So as we all know acute stress leads to flare-ups, and chronic distess leads to adrenal exhaustion, immune disfunction, and hormonal imbalance. My point is that; it IS very important to treat the cause of acne, that is to embark on a long term strategy to clean up your body, but it is equally important to take care of the symptoms of acne. Because if we have less (or no) symptoms, then we aren't so stressed, and overtime our perception of ourselves changes and we subconsciously start to think of our selves as 'aperson who doesn't have (or who has very little) acne' this is our perception and thus it becomes our reality.

This may all sound a bit weird but read any psychological degree textbook, if you want to findout about the power our self-image has on our physical bodies.

Thus if we simply try to treat the cause of acne (which may take many years) and negate the symptoms (which will be with us for a long time while we are treating the cause) then we will either give up the treatment (as it is getting no results) or get increasingly distressed that we look so bad.

So..I believe that acne suseptibility is many humans (it is an unwanted modern-day manifestation of genetic systems that are in many of us but not all of us (known as genetic polymorphisms). These genetic systems may have confirred advantages to our ancestors but today give rise to diseases such as acne). These genetic systems are activated by long-term modern (western) environmental circumstances, (diet, background dioxins, pollution, stress) and this gives rise to SUBTLE metabolic and hormonal variations (see posts by SWEETJADE for details on the variations).

(NB, this process is the cause of many chronic diseases of the western world, such as the unwanted activation of a anzyme called ACE, that gave a advantage to our ancestors, but in this modern western world, it causes heart failure...which is why heart failure is treated with ACE inhibitors).

My point is that trying to treat the cause is a very hard task when we live in this western world, we have to breath the air, eat the food, and experience the life. therefore these genetic systems will always be activated, just by living in this western environment (this is called 'TOXIC- ENVIRONMENT theory' and it is talked about a bit in the film 'supersize me')

Also what is causation anyway? many people say bacteria causes acne, NO IT DOESNT, hormone imbalance causes acne, NO IT DOESNT, diet causes acne, NO IT DOESNT our genetic make-up causes acne.....Do you see what i mean.

I mean we CAN do our best to eat a healthy diet, that suits us (don't eat foods that break us out) avoid stress etc BUT we should NOT forget about the symptoms. Orthodox medicine has developed within the western world it is designed to meet its needs, we shouldn't dismiss it.

Finally my suggestions for maintaining clear skin (which i think is the best we can do unless we undertake a lifesyle that is very difficult if we want to live in the western world. So until we evolve to loose these unnessessary genetic systems or we get better at genetic engineering, we must look at want has been proven in scientific studies to work and we must take them all (or many of them).

1.THERAPIES THAT BEEN PROVEN (and what i take.. i am now maintained virtually clear and easily controlled).


Vitamin B5.... (more than 5g per day, i take 6g per day, divided)
Zinc ............(80mg per day...plus copper 2mg per day)
Guggul..........(25mg guggulsterones 2 or 3 times per day)
Red and Blue Lamp (dermulux) .....(15min once or twice per day)
minocycline.....(100mg per day....THIS DOES WORK IF TAKEN
AT THE SAME TIME EVERY DAY, ON AN EMPTY STOMACH NOT WITH ANY OTHER SUPPLEMENTS. ALSO WHILE TAKING IT, PRO-BIOTICS (8BILLION PER DAY) SHOULD BE TAKEN AND GRAPEFRUIT SEED EXTRACT SHOULD BE USED (INTERNALLY; 20 DROPS IN WATER 3 TIMES PER DAY, AND EXTERNALLY; MIX 5 DROPS INTO WASH TWICE PER DAY). AND VITAMIN C (2-3G PER DAY). The probiotics replenish gut bacteria, the grapefruit seed extract kills any yeast (and p-acnes) and the vitamin c prevents minocline induced tissue stains.

TRETINOIN......(once (or twice occasionally) per evening, use sunscreen )
Benzoyl peroxide.....(once per day, not with tretinoin, use enough...see
*********..'dans regime')

Wash...Should contain Salicylic acid (proven) and no sodium lauryl (laureth) sulphate..in other words it won't foam up..it should be a cream wash


EVERYTHING i have just above has scientific studies to prove they work (check pub-med), so when taken together they almost guarantee that you will clear up. If you have very severe acne use accutane first to start you on a clean slate, and then remember not to use tretinoin for 6 months after finishing.


2.OTHER THERAPIES BASED ON SCIENTIFIC STUDIES:

A study on the drug, Zileuton (A LOX-5 inhibitor) showed that it is effective against the inflammatory component of acne, but you can not buy this drug yet, so there are many natural LOX-5 inhibitors, such as Tumeric and Boswellic acid. These must be taken for about a month and at relatively high dosage (Tumeric about 5 times the dose on the back).

Another option is Devil's claw, which as anti-inflammatory actions similar to steroids, but without steroids, again a high dose and long term use. White willow bark is a natural aspirin that can reduce inflammation as well. Bromalein is an enzyme from pineapple that also reduces inflammation.

Obviously you should also be taking evening primrose, flaxseed oil AND borage oil, not either or.

B-complex, Niacin, vitamin B-6 and saw palmetto all help balance hormones.

MSM (8g per day, divided) removes toxins from skin cells.

St Johns wort is a natural 'selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor, it reduces depression, and anxiety associated with acne, and may also help treat body dysmorphic disorder.

Acne-tab and Zenmed are effective (though the latter should be used in an on-off fashion)

3.THERAPIES TO TREAT THE CAUSE

The last acne solution...leo ceisen (i think thats his name)
Other rediculously strict dietary regimes....(if you want to do this thats fine, i have tried them all and none of them got rid of the symptoms they just made me depressed)

Liver lipotrophic formulaes....Very useful to keep the liver performing well (should include high dose milk thistle, inositol and dandelion)





In conclusion i think that doing all the proven therapies will keep your acne under control, and you can add in some of the second therapies if you want.The third set of therapies are ones that will help treat the cause, these can be added as well but they wont help with symptoms probably for a long time.

Any treatments that are undertaken should be done so with,the background of a healthy diet, i.e stick to a predominantly ayevedic (pitta constitution diet...research this if you dont know what im talking about, or ask me and ill fill you in), this ISNOT an extreame diet, (you're allowed ice cream)

Anyway i hope this has been useful, any questions dont hessitate to ask...thank you for your time.

mike (kkpb7825)





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