Successful management of acne requires careful patient evaluation followed by consideration of several patient and medication factors when selecting a particular therapeutic regimen. Within the last few years, several new agents for the treatment of acne have become available that afford greater flexibility in the treatment of this prevalent dermatologic disorder. These include adapalene, tazarotene, 2 new topical tretinoin formulations, azelaic acid, a new sodium sulfacetamide formulation, and an oral contraceptive recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of acne. After a brief overview of the pathophysiology of acne and existing therapies, this review evaluates the new antiacne agents and how they can be integrated into a successful treatment strategy that takes into account acne severity and predominant lesion type as well as age, skin type, lifestyle, motivation, and the presence of coexisting conditions.
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