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Home: Diseases & Conditions: Acne: Second & Third Stages Of Acne

Acne: Second & Third Stages

Pimples, Zits, Cysts and Nodules

Acne grows in stages from a harmless looking whitehead or blackhead to a cyst that damages tissues deeper in the skin and causes scars. The first stage is that of a whitehead or blackhead. In the second stage acne is known as a papule and/or pustule and the third stage is that of cysts and nodules. Papules and pustules are also known as pimples or zits.

A papule is a slightly elevated solid lesion. Papules are generally less than 5 mm in diameter and are not infected. Papules grow to nodular acne.

Pustules are filled with liquid mass containing dead skin cells, white blood cells and bacteria. Pustules are fragile and rupture easily. Pustules progress to cysts.

A nodule is an inflamed lesion that extends to deeper layers of the skin. A nodule is like papule - a solid dome-shaped lesion. Nodules are painful and cause scars as they damage the inner tissues of the skin. Nodules take time to cure.

A cyst is a severe form of pustule that is filled with bacteria, pus, sebum and dead skin cells. Cysts cause pain and extend inside the skin damaging the skin tissue. Cysts invariably cause a scar. Commonly a cyst is drained and then treated. Those who have tendency to form nodular or cystic acne are advised to take Isotertinoin.

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Article created on: June 14, 2006

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