At Q Dermatology, we are the experts in treating all forms of acne breakouts and the scars they can leave behind – including childhood, teenage, adult onset and hormonal acne. Acne is not caused by a bad diet or dirt building up on your skin. If you are in pain, if you are popping, squeezing or picking pimples on your face, or you’re bothered by your appearance, it’s time to say goodbye to acne and say hello to the new, pimple-free you.

We understand that acne can have a huge impact on your self-confidence or social interactions, but help is here for you.

Acne is one of the most common conditions our dermatologists treat. It affects 8 to 9 out of every 10 people aged 15 – 24. Our individualised acne treatments and acne scar treatments help your skin become smooth and clear again. We understand the burden that acne can be and we are committed to working with you to tailor the safest and most effective acne treatment for you – whether that’s correct skin care, tablets, creams and/or technology based therapies. Book an appointment today so we can give you the benefit of our specialist advice.


Why treat acne?

Acne is curable! Early assessment and treatment can avoid unwanted scarring and often require only a shorter course of treatment. Studies show that patients feel happier and have more self-confidence when their acne is cleared; in other words, quality of life is improved. Even if your acne has causing scarring, it is important to stop the inflammation to avoid any further scarring. There have been significant advances in the treatment of acne scarring in recent years but preventative medicine, treating acne early, is best practice.

Uncontrolled acne can leave scarring that appears as textural changes or indentations. It is the result of acne cysts (inflammation) destroying your skin tissue during the healing process. Acne scarring can present in multiple ways: macular scarring (flat red brown scars), ice pick, rolling, boxscar and divot scarring (leave holes in your skin due to loss of volume), hypertrophic and keloid scarring (usually raised, occurring on chest and back).

What causes acne?

We are understanding more and more about acne and what can trigger breakouts. A key reason for some people is blockage of oil ducts, while others are sensitive to naturally circulating hormones called androgens. These hormones increase oil production, which encourages bacteria (P. acnes) to grow and multiply. A pimple is simply a combination of a blocked duct with an overgrowth of P. acnes.

In order to properly treat acne, all aspects of this process need to be considered. That’s why superficial peels and dermabrasion often last only a few weeks before the acne returns.

What treatments are available?

At Q Dermatology we aim to tailor an individualised approach for you. Your best treatment will often depend on your age, gender, triggers and causes of your acne. Our dermatologists offer specialist treatments and are experts in all the options. We can advise on a combination including:

  • Isotretinoin (trade names Roaccutane or Oratane, medication only prescribed by Dermatologists)
  • Skin care advice
  • Topical alpha and beta hydroxy acids
  • Antibiotics
  • Hormonal balancing in women
  • Chemical peels, microdermabrasion and extractions
  • Fractionated laser, IPL, light based therapies

Is there a cure for acne?

Isotretinoin (trade names Roaccutane or Oratane) is an oral synthetic Vitamin A derivative that is a Pharmaceutical Benefit Schedule (PBS) listed medication that has the highest efficacy for curing acne.

It is the only prescribed drug that can permanently improve acne breakouts. Only dermatologists can prescribe Isotretinoin and all Q Dermatology doctors fulfil this requirement. Make an appointment today to see if you qualify for PBS Isotretinoin.

What skincare helps acne?

The propaganda surrounding skin products can be misleading and often makes ambiguous claims to fix acne, leading to confusion about what’s best for your skin.

Using the right skin care products can improve your skin health and in turn assist your acne. The truth is, acne is a medical skin condition. We suggest you seek specialist, professional advice from your dermatologist about which skin care products would suit your skin’s needs.

What to look for in a facial cleanser?

Ideally a facial cleanser should complement your daily routine and not irritate your skin. Particular facial cleansers are superior at cleaning off makeup, dirt and oil. When using doctor prescribed medication like Isotretinoin, benzoyl peroxide or retinoids it is important to avoid skin irritation and to find a facial cleanser that works best for you.

Here are 6 helpful tips on what to look for in a facial cleanser:

  1. Do not over-cleanse your skin. It can be detrimental to your acne, so you should cleanse your skin no more than twice a day.
  2. Avoid fragrances. Although they smell good they can cause irritation.
  3. Look for a soap-free cleanser. This often means free from alcohol and chemical abrasives, thus allowing a more balanced pH, causing less irritation.
  4. High-rinseability facial cleansers are best for those with oily skin. This avoids the build up of surface film and gives you a healthier appearance.
  5. Avoid gritty exfoliating facial cleansers. Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and Beta hydroxy acids (BHAs) can naturally exfoliate without causing physical trauma and are more effective ingredients to treat acne. (Caution: too high a concentration will be more irritating for your skin, too low a concentration will not be effective).
  6. Look for anti-inflammatory vitamins. Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) has such anti-inflammatory properties. Dermatologists have been using Vitamin B3 for years, as it can help reduce inflammation.

Why are Retinoids desirable?

Retinoids (synthetic Vitamin As) are the best at reducing the size and activity of your sebaceous glands. Therefore retinoids are the best at decreasing oil production and in turn improving your acne. There are many types of Vitamin A and at different strengths. Q Dermatology doctors will aim to choose the best product for your skin. A common side effect of using retinoids is scaly, dry and irritated skin, so here are 6 tips on how to get the most out of your doctor prescribed acne gels, lotions or creams:

  1. Wash with a gentle soap-free cleanser and follow the above facial cleanser advice.
  2. Make sure your skin is completely dry prior to application. After using your facial cleanser carefully dry your skin, as applying to moist areas can cause skin irritation.
  3. Avoid sensitive skin areas. Particularly around the nostrils, eyes and lips.
  4. Focus on the areas where you break out to prevent new pimples forming
  5. Use an oil free non-comedogenic moisturiser. Look for one with a SPF30 or higher for extra benefit.
  6. Be patient. Doctor prescribed acne gels, lotions or creams may be slow to work, but used correctly will give you results.

Will diet help my acne?

At Q Dermatology we promote a healthy, well balanced diet for all our patients. Acne is a medical disorder of the oil glands, which usually requires medical treatment. Diet alone will have little or no impact on your acne. Focusing too much on dietary changes can be dangerous, as it can delay treatment and lead to further scarring.

Medical research has found with some level of evidence that people should avoid extremely high intakes of dairy and sugary products with a high glycaemic index (GI). It is suggested that the hormones in dairy products interact with one’s internal hormones and may lead to the promotion of acne. Similarly, a low GI diet can improve the way your metabolic hormones interact with your sex hormones, which in turn assists with your acne.

  • Low GI foods include:
  • Vegetables and fruits
  • Nuts and legumes
  • Fish
  • Wholegrain breads and cereals

What does acne treatment cost?

At Q Dermatology we aim for affordable dermatology care. We are not a bulk billing practice. We tailor an individualised acne approach and consequently, not one price fits all. Please book an appointment with a dermatologist to discuss your acne treatment options.