Home > Acne: Treatment With Antibiotics
Doctors often prescribe antibiotics to treat severe acne or acne that is likely to leave scars. Antibiotics improve the look of your skin by killing bacteria that cause acne. This means you'll have fewer pimples and redness. Less acne means less acne scarring.
You can put antibiotics directly on your skin (topically) or take them by mouth (orally). Topical antibiotics kill bacteria on your skin. Oral antibiotics kill bacteria in your skin pores. Oral antibiotics work best if you start them at high doses. Your doctor will reduce the dose as your acne gets better.
People with mild acne may need only topical antibiotics. The most common types include:
A topical antibiotic may be combined with a topical retinoid, such as tretinoin (Retin-A). Or a topical antibiotic may be combined with benzoyl peroxide gel.
Talk with your doctor before using these medicines if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
People with severe acne and people who are more likely to have scarring from acne often take antibiotics by mouth. The most common oral antibiotics include:
If you are using topical antibiotics or taking oral antibiotics, your doctor also may have you use benzoyl peroxide on your skin. This can make it less likely that you will develop antibiotic resistance.
For more information on antibiotics, see Drug Reference. (Drug Reference is not available in all systems.)
Current as ofApril 1, 2019
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: Kathleen Romito MD - Family MedicineAdam Husney MD - Family MedicineMartin J. Gabica MD - Family MedicineEllen K. Roh MD - Dermatology
Current as of:
April 1, 2019
Medical Review:Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine & Ellen K. Roh MD - Dermatology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2019 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Addiction is treated by our Behavioral Health Doctors.
4 Medical Blvd,
Hattiesburg, MS 39402
304 South 40th Avenue
Hattiesburg, MS 39402
27 B South 6th Street
Bay Springs, MS 39422
Covington County Hospital
701 S. Holly Ave
Collins, MS 39428
Columbia Family Clinic
502 Broad Street
Columbia, MS 39429
Careers & Volunteers
Medical Staff Services
Commitment to C.A.R.E
FGH Family Medicine Residency Program
Media and Newsroom
Community Health Needs Assesment
Spirit of Women Calendar
Notice of Privacy Practices · PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST · FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE · NON-DISCRIMINATION NOTICE
REQUEST FROM LAW ENFORCEMENT FOR RELEASE OF PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION 6051 US HIGHWAY 49, HATTIESBURG MS 39401 · 601-288-7000 · © FORREST HEALTH · ALL RIGHTS RESERVED ·