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Acne after birth control
An_207946 posted:
I made it through the teenage years relatively acne free. Of course I had the occasional zit on my face, but I was pretty lucky. I was on birth control (NuvaRing) for about 6 years before my husband and I decided to start trying to get pregnant. Since I've quit the BC, I've broken out like CRAZY! On my chin, jawline, hairline, and especially on my shoulders and across my back and chest! What the heck! I wash my face twice a day and use a clear body bar with acne fighting acids in the shower. I'm at wits end with summer coming up and all of this acne on my body. I feel like none of the daily routine suggestions are working. Should I see a dermatologist? Is there more I can do?
David A Colbert, MD responded:
Hi Anon,

The etiology of acne is multifactorial and consists of the interaction between p. acne (a bacteria in the skin), hormonal stimulation of oil producing glands, keratinocyte buildup on the skin and inflammation.

In your situation it seems that hormones are playing a larger role in producing acne (when using nuva ring acne was controlled but when discontinued it flared). Unfortunately you are limited in what medications can be used during pregnancy but if you seek the advice of a local dermatologist you can learn what is recommended/contraindicated.

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