Content » Vol 92, Issue 3

Investigative Report

A Nationwide Study of Acne Treatment Patterns in Korea: Analysis of Patient Preconceived Notions and Dermatologist Suggestion for Treatment

Hyuck Hoon Kwon, Hyun Sun Yoon, Dae Hun Suh, Ji Young Yoon, Sue Kyung Park, Eil Soo Lee, Joo Heung Lee, Nack In Kim, Young Chul Kye, Young Suck Ro, Sang Ju Lee, Myung Nam Kim, Kyung Jeh Sung, Eun So Lee, Kwang Joong Kim, Korean Society for Acne Research
DOI: 10.2340/00015555-1331


Patients often have preconceived notions about acne treat­ments before visiting dermatologists. The aim of this study was to explore the association between patients’ beliefs regarding acne and physicians’ suggestion for treatment modality in dermatology clinics. A cross-sectional, nationwide multicentre study was conducted. A total of 1,370 patients completed questionnaires about beliefs about acne treatment before seeking medical care, and 101 dermatologists assessed their acne severity and proposed treatment methods. We found that patients had preconceptions in understanding disease characteristics, assessing subjective acne severity and preferring specific treatment modalities. Dermatologists’ determination of topical agents as first-line treatment was affected by disease severity and patients’ preferences. They were also more likely to prescribe isotretinoin even in moderate acne compared to oral antibiotics and topical agents. Selections of physical treatments and light-based
therapies were affected by patients’ preferences, subjective self-evaluation and dermatologists’ assessments. Thus, we suggest that acne treatment strategies should incorporate both patients’ subjective perceptions and objective clinical practices into a management paradigm.


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