to the topical antibiotics, oral antibiotics work by fighting the acne forming
bacteria p. acnes as well as fighting inflammation. The advantage of oral antibiotics
over topical antibiotics is that they reach everywhere that acne may exist, including
the face, neck, chest, back, and tops of the arms. They are also more advantageous
in more moderate and severe acne that presents with "deeper" lesions.
Oral antibiotics work by inhibiting certain processes needed by
bacteria to survive. In doing so, the bacteria is killed and cannot contribute
to acne formation. In addition, through the blocking of certain cells in the body's
immune system, oral antibiotics can decrease inflammation which helps control
inflammatory acne (pimples, etc.).
of oral antibiotics
The main oral antibiotics used in the treatment of
acne include minocycline (Dynacin, Minocin, Myrac), doxycycline (Adoxa, Doryx,
Monodox), and erythromycin (Eryc, Ery-tabs) although at times others are used
such as trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim).
Perhaps the most common side effects of oral antibiotics are
gastrointestinal in nature including stomach upset, heartburn, nausea and vomiting.
This can often be decreased by taking the medications with food and water.
antiobiotics will also cause sun sensitivity, This is especially true with doxycyline
and minocycline (doxycyline being the more sun sensitizing of the two). Erythromycin
does not cause sun sensitivity.
may also cause some other rare side effects including dizzinesxs, blue black pigmentation
of the skin, inflammation of the liver, and a reaction that resembles lupus.
should not be taken by pregnany women or children who are younger than 9 years
of age due to potential discoloration of teeth and delayed bone growth.