Acne misdiagnosis? When your acne could actually be another condition

You have acne and you’ve tried everything you can think of to get rid of it. Have you considered the possibility that you skin condition might not be acne?

I can remember the day I discovered that my acne wasn’t exactly acne. After staring in mirror at my pimply-covered forehead, I had to finally admit that none of the previous acne treatments I’ve tried—including a variety of topical creams, medicated facial washes, hormone pills or supplements—seemed to improve the acne in that particular area of my face. Not even the “Clear Skin Weekend” anti-inflammatory diet made a difference to the minefield of small pustules on my forehead. As I stared in the mirror, I remembered this fact: The only time I had completely clear skin all over my face was when an overpriced dermatologist put me on a long antibiotic course to treat my acne. (Sidenote: Now, in hindsight, I understand that using antibiotics to treat acne is a lose-lose solution that will not work long-term, but at the time I was willing to try anything.) I then wondered: Why is there an overgrowth of bacteria in one particular area of my skin?