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SoontobeMD

Acne Scar Observation

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Over the past several months I have been observing my acne scars pretty carefully, and I believe I may have found an interesting observation that may be helpful for some of you.

I have recently gotten back into heavy resistance weight training, and I have noticed a very significant reduction in my acne scars that are less than a year old. Some of the very shallow ones have even filled up to the extent where I can no longer really see them, and if it weren't for the hyperpigmentation I would not see them at all.

I tried to find an explanation for this, and I believe it may be correlated to the excess growth hormone produced during heavy resistance training. Growth hormone has been proven by multiple studies to increase collagen synthesis elsewhere in the body, but to the best of my knowledge no studies have been done on the effects of growth hormone on human skin. However, I discovered a study done on rat skin several decades ago showing that growth hormone does in fact increase collagen deposition in rodent skin.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2728814

I also remembered that when I had my most severe acne, I did not develop any scars, and this was at the time that I was doing wrestling, a sport that would stimulate a lot of growth hormone. My scars developed after high school, when my physical activity had decreased.

I am by no means saying that I have proven this, but I have been observing this for some time, and I am confident that for me there has been a correlation.

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Guest Timehealsall

interesting observation. Although i have seen tons of guys at the gym (who are fit and muscular) who have acne scars. Most seem to have gotten them after they began working out (maybe due to the shitty supplements they take).

I guess its all individual based.

Another thing to consider is stress levels. How were your stress levels when you accumulated your scarring?

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Thanks for the reply,

I do not believe resistance training would prevent acne scars, in fact, the increased testosterone and growth hormone contributes to sebum production and ultimately more acne. However, for those who have their acne under control, the growth hormone may help reduce the superficial scarring as it has for me.

I was certainly under more stress when I first got my significant acne scars (first year of medical school) and increased cortisol levels would lead to decreased protien/collagen synthesis, but I do not believe that was the cause. I had been acne free for approximately 6 months before my scarring which led me to stop using my acne regimen. This led to VERY deep cystic acne when it did appear, which led to my scarring. After going back on my regimen immediately after the scarring appeared I haven't gotten any more scarring, and I have been under far more stress since my scarring than before.

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Whats your acne regimen?

My regimen is to wash my face every 4 hours with a salicylic acid wash, or cetaphil depending on the amount of irritation, then use a 2.5% benzoyl peroxide cream at night to inhibit sebum production. If I can not make it to somewhere I can wash my face I will use neutrogena oil free cleansing wipes to buy a few hours until I can. I've noticed that doing this I can prevent any pimples that cause scarring, although they still produce hyperpigmentation that I use hydroquinone or azeleic acid to fade.

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