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Dermatol Clin. 2009 Jan;27(1):33-42. doi: 10.1016/j.det.2008.07.006.

Optimizing use of oral antibiotics in acne vulgaris.

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Valley Hospital Medical Center, 620 Shadow Lane, Las Vegas, NV 89106, USA.


Oral antibiotics are commonly used to treat acne vulgaris, primarily in patients presenting with moderate to severe facial or truncal disease severity. These agents are most appropriately used in combination with a topical regimen containing benzoyl peroxide and a topical retinoid. The most common oral antibiotics for treating acne vulgaris are the tetracycline derivatives, although macrolide agents such as erythromycin have also been used extensively. Over the past 4 decades, as the sensitivity of Propionibacterium acnes to several oral and topical antibiotics has decreased, the efficacy of oral tetracycline and erythromycin has markedly diminished, leading to increased use of doxycycline, minocycline, and other agents, such as trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole.

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