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J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2001 Nov;15(6):541-5.

An epidemiological study of acne in female adults: results of a survey conducted in France.

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H─Ápital Henri Mondor, Service de Dermatologie, Creteil, France.



Acne is usually perceived as a disease of teenagers, and most epidemiological studies have focused on adolescents.


The primary objective was to investigate the prevalence of acne in a representative sample of French females. Information about skin type, life-style factors influencing acne and quality of life were also recorded.


A self-administered questionnaire was sent to 4,000 adult women aged 25-40 years, after a validation test by three dermatologists. A definition of acne severity, according to questionnaire answers, was established before the questionnaire was sent out.


A total of 3394 women completed the questionnaire of which 3,305 were useable. The data showed a prevalence of acne in 17% of the population, and physiological acne in 24%. Thus, the total acne prevalence was 41%. Forty-nine per cent of the acne patients had acne sequelae (scars and/or pigmented macules). Forty-one per cent of adult acne patients had not experienced acne during their adolescence. A premenstrual flare and stress was recorded as causing acne in 78% and 50%, respectively. Twenty-two per cent of acne subjects were currently receiving therapy. For most patients, acne did not severely impair their quality of life.


This study shows a prevalence of acne in 41% of women in the general population. A high proportion of these acne cases are late onset acne.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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