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Dermatol Online J. 2017 Nov 15;23(11). pii: 13030/qt53m2q13s.

Metformin as an adjunct therapy for the treatment of moderate to severe acne vulgaris.

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Lincoln Memorial University-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine.


The purpose of this literature review is to evaluate the use of metformin as an adjunct therapy in the treatment of moderate-to-severe acne in those not diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or androgen excess. The authors conducted independent literature searches. Results were limited to clinical trials and randomized controlled trials. Studies with participants diagnosed with moderateto-severe acne vulgaris taking metformin versus placebo or other active treatment were included;studies with participants diagnosed with PCOS or androgen excess were excluded. The authors found three studies consistent with the search guidelines that evaluated the effects of metformin as adjunct therapy in moderate to severe acne vulgaris. In eachstudy, metformin was an effective adjunct therapy in the treatment of moderate-to-severe acne vulgaris.

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