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Cystic Acne

Health Articles > Acne > Cystic Acne

While most people will know about acne and what it looks like, they might not be aware of cystic acne which gets it name from the cysts that appear during an outbreak. Unfortunately, cystic acne is the most severe and often the most painful type of acne that you can suffer from.

Acne is a disorder of the sebaceous glands so that when these glands lubricate the skin and become blocked, bacteria overgrows and causes skin blemishes. However with cystic acne, breakouts can be deep and inflamed on or around the face or even other parts of the body. Compared with other types of acne, the affected skin can have cysts as large as several centimeters across.

As well as cysts, the signs and symptoms of cystic acne include:

  • Nodules
  • Papules
  • Pustules
  • Blackheads
  • Whiteheads
  • Inflammation
  • Pain
  • Pigmentation problems and
  • Scarring


If you are not sure what a cyst is, it appears as a painful blemish – a fluid-filled soft lump - found mostly beneath the surface of the skin. Nodules in turn are hard, stubborn and painful lumps lying deeper beneath the skin's surface.

Cystic acne is more likely to affect teenage boys and young male adults and are often passed down so genetics can play a role. Breakouts of cystic acne cause serious damage to the skin and destroy healthy skin tissue so should never be ignored and will need treatment. Always avoid picking at cysts as this can worsen the situation and even lead to scarring.

Although cystic acne has much the same causes as regular acne, its appearance can be devastating for the affected person because of its severity. Many sufferers will become especially self-conscious and embarrassed with very low self esteem, leading to even more problems including stress which is one of the causes in the first place.

Other causes are a diet high in sugar and refined carbohydrates so that eliminating grains, sugars, sweets, potatoes and corn can definitely help improve all types of acne thereby creating an environment that does not allow bacteria and inflammation to flourish. This is why prescribing antibiotics can be particularly harmful because they will exacerbate any bacterial growth while sugar in particular will feed the bacteria accumulating at the point of inflammation on your skin.

Sufferers must look at their diet and stress levels carefully, often having to make serious changes. Stress, toxins and processed food all play a part. Sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, goji berries, kale, collard greens, cilantro, broccoli and many other fruits and vegetables that are are rich in natural vitamin A will help. Red palm oil is the richest natural source of beta-carotene, a precursor of vitamin A, and an excellent food for combating acne.

People with severe cystic acne are often prescribed Accutane which is a particularly dangerous and toxic drug. However, the active ingredient in Accutane is simply a synthetic form of vitamin A so instead of taking the synthetic form, acne sufferers would be better off taking those vitamin A rich foods above or additional supplements of natural, carotene forms of vitamin A that are safe and non-toxic.

There are many natural approaches to combating cystic acne that are highly effective including a natural treatment alternative - H-Acne Formula from Healing Natural Oils that is safe and gentle to use.