papules: diagnosis, treatment, and cures

What are papules? When the skin becomes very irritated the walls break down. They cause large abnormal skin tissue to form called papules.  They are hard often 1 centimeter in size and different shapes. They are called lesions. The other type of acne is pustules. Pustules are filled with pus and often yellowish in color. They resemble a blister or cyst. When you have these conditions you need to see a dermatologist.

Cause of Papules and Pustules

These types of lesions are often found with rosacea. They often caused by skin rashes caused by latex, makeup, soap, chemicals, and plants. The illness chicken pox will produce papules on the sick that are itchy and contagious. Eczema is another form of papules. It is itchy scaly red skin that sometimes weeps from infection.

Sometimes it occurs due to an allergic reaction to a medication, mites, shingles, psoriasis, hepatitis and bug bites. These are all serious conditions that require treatment from a dermatologist. Some bugs like ticks can cause papules and pustules. Ticks can cause Lyme disease so treatment is important. Papules and pustules can be found on the hands, face, back, or feet.  This type of acne is known as inflammatory acne

Diagnose and Treatments

Antibiotics and Prescription Topical Creams and Gels

The dermatologist will give you a physical exam and sometimes perform a blood test to determine the cause of your papules and pustules.  They might prescribe a topical cream or gel called Retinoid. They are derived from Vitamin A and generally applied to the skin in the evening a few times a week. Some of the most common retinoid are Avita-Retina-A, Differin, and Tazorac.

Often the doctor will prescribe antibiotics to kill the infection. Many times you will be using either the retinoid cream or gel the first few months. This helps you to control the papules and pustule. It is part of papules treatment.

Often the antibiotic is taken in the morning and you use the cream or gel on your face or other parts of the body in the evening. The topical medications may produce redness and peeling in the skin. Some of the antibiotics have the ingredient peroxide.

Oral Medications

Oral antibiotics are often needed with this form of inflammatory acne to reduce infection, redness and swelling. There are tetracyclines like minocycline and doxycycline. The doctor prescribes them for three to four months than tapers them off. Antibiotics sometimes cause upset stomach and dizziness.

A drug called Aldactone is prescribed when antibiotics do not work. It is a drug that blocks androgen hormones from the sebaceous glands. Side effects are painful periods and breast tenderness. Isotretinon is used for severe cases of acne often works when acne does not respond well to other drugs. Due to side effects the doctor must monitor the patient when they take this drug. They have to keep a watch for serious side effects.

Light Therapy

Light therapy is often used in combination with medications to help clear up the papules and pustules. It targets bacteria in the skin and clearing it up. Most light therapy is done in the doctor’s office where results can be watched and controlled. A number of treatments are needed to see results in treating it. Sometimes a chemical is applied to the skin to increase the effectiveness of light therapy.

Steroid Injections

Often papules are treated with steroid injections. A drug using a needle is injected directly into the cyst or nodule. It improves the condition without having to remove it. Often they use cortisone to treat these lesions. It is a steroid or hormone produced in the adrenal glands.  It can cause fatty tissue to develop around the site and a sunken appearance of the skin.

Soft Tissue Fillers and Laser Therapy Scars

When scarring occurs often fillers are injected into the area. Collagen or fat is injected into the area to make the scar less noticeable. Laser therapy later can be used to improve scars and help the skin heal more effectively.  These treatments are often used after the papules and pustules have been removed.

Papules are often from the skin condition rosacea and other disease. It is a serious skin condition that needs papules diagnosis and treatment by a qualified dermatologist. 

By Joan Russell

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