Jump to content
Search In
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

Why does PCOS-related acne come in cycles?

Recommended Posts

Could someone explain why PCOS-related cystic acne comes in cycles? I always go 1 - 1.5 years with more minor cystic eruptions, then, *BAM!* I'm hit with a 4-to-6-month-long wave of cystic acne that has been leaving behind scars (yes, real scars, not just hyperpigmentation).

My free and total testosterone levels were normal, while my DHEA-S showed as higher than normal--which makes my endocrinologist suspect PCOS. He said that acne caused by PCOS tends to cycle for people. I didn't ask why at the time, so I'm left wondering why DHEA-S--or any androgen, for that matter--causes acne to occur in cycles? 

I took the Pill for 18 years before stopping it due to other health concerns; now, my cystic acne is causing scarring that I avoided while on BC. My skin still went through these cystic cycles while on BC, but they were MUCH more easily controlled by simply cutting out sugar. (Dairy's always been a no-no, except for butter when I'm not in cystic mode.)

Now, my cystic eruptions come not only from sugar, but gluten, nearly all grains, starches, various oils (even healthy ones, like avocado and the fruit, itself), eggs, butter, etc. So when a cystic breakout period starts, my diet whittles down to fruits (minus citrus and avocado), vegetables (minus starches--e.g., potatoes), 2 types of grains (steel-cut oats and brown rice) and meat (more chicken than not).

NOTE: I'm not a good candidate for Accutane and likely not Spironolactone or Metformin, either, based on current health issues--otherwise, I'd have tried something else by now, out of sheer desperation.


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm guessing that people's silence means that no one knows why PCOS-related acne comes in cycles, rather than remaining a constant. (Don't get me wrong; I'm not complaining that hormonal, cystic acne isn't a 24/7 issue in my life. LOL I just am confused as to why it affects me for 4 - 6 months at a time, then goes dormant for roughly a year, sometimes as long as 1.5 years.)

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn't be so dogmatic with the belief of food causing acne. Most likely most of the foods you mentioned are not triggering your acne (besides high GI ones and maybe dairy) but maybe you just happen to have acne and you randomly break out from hormonal reasons.


PCOS acne comes in cycles because hormones work in the same way.

As we get older, hormone levels change and your body adapts to them accordingly.


When we have PCOS it can be worse as we have already a hormone imbalance so any natural hormone shift (like in pregnancy or just age related) can trigger or worsen your symptoms.


I also have high DHEA-s levels by he way xD

Edited by Jck17

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Personalized Advice Quiz - All of Acne.org in just a few minutes