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Nearly 80% adolescents in UAE suffer from acne

United Arab Emirates: Tuesday, November 03 - 2009 @ 12:00

This was revealed at a recent medical symposium held in Dubai, in which leading experts threw light on new development in the treatment of acne.

Dr. Didier Coustou, an internationally renowned dermatologist with a wealth of European experience, said:

“Acne cannot be taken lightly, as quality of life can be affected because of this disease. In the Middle East, people are prone to acne because of their oily skin and humid weather. Cosmetic products should not be used for acne without medical advice.”

“UAE is quite advanced in dermatology treatments. I have visited many countries for acne related studies and I am really impressed with the level of expertise of the UAE local dermatologists. Dermatology sector in the UAE is in par with France. Local doctors are quite good in what they are doing, but the important thing is to consult a dermatologist for acne treatment, and avoid using plain cosmetic products,” Dr. Coustou added.

The symposium was organised jointly by Pierre Fabre Dermatologie, France’s second biggest independent Dermatological laboratory and their local partner Alphamed group.

At the symposium, Isotretinoin, which is the active ingredient of the drug for acne treatment, was highlighted as a basic and safe treatment for severe acne. This form of therapy has revolutionized the treatment of acne. It decreases the size and output of sebaceous glands and makes the cells that are sloughed off into the sebaceous glands less sticky, and thus decreases their ability to form white heads and black heads.

Dr. Alissar Khoury, UAE dermatology and allergy specialist, urged people to stop using friends’ referrals to treat acne, “The range of people in the 15-22 age group who have acne is 80% in the UAE. Five per cent of them resort to wrong treatments based on cosmetics products and friends’ referrals. Food doesn’t affect acne but stress does. Thirty per cent of acne patients have study-related stress. 12% of them have fear of communicating with people.”

“We urge insurance companies to cover acne because it is a disease, and 5% of the patients cannot afford the treatment because it involves blood tests and other tests. The average spend per treatment is Dhs5000 and duration of treatment is around four years. The incidence of acne is split equally between locals and expatriates from adolescent ages,” Dr. Khoury added.

Dr. Khoury disclosed that 5% of acne patients take wrong treatments at some point due to lack of education or ignorance of the severe side effects, and stressed the need to educate the public, especially the parents, on the importance of early treatment.

Dr Barham, General Manager, Alphamed group, said, “We are pleased to host this symposium which has gathered top notch dermatologists from the UAE. Alphamed is committed to introducing safe and cost effective practices to the UAE market. We have jointly organized this symposium with our partner – Pierre Fabre Dermatologie, to enhance awareness on the acne disease among the UAE population and medical community because of the serious effects that might result of neglecting this disease, from ugly scars to emotional setbacks.”

Dr. Sameer Al Ali, a dermatocosmotologist from Dr. Ahmed Fikry Medical Center, revealed that 70% of acne patients were girls and 30% boys.

Dr. Ahmed Abou Sharia, consultant dermatocosmotologist and former director of dermatology at Al Mafraq Hospital, underlined the need for early treatment for acne sufferers, in order to avoid serious after-effects.

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Tuesday, November 3- 2009 @ 12:00 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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