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Most Adult Acne Antibiotic Course Durations Follow Guidelines

However, topical retinoids are underused in conjunction with antibiotics for adult acne

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The majority of oral antibiotic course durations for adult acne follow guidelines, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Chelsey E. Straight, from the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, and colleagues retrospectively analyzed commercial insurance claims to determine the duration and costs of antibiotic treatment among adults (21 years) with acne.

The researchers found that the majority (84.5 percent) of the 17,448 antibiotic courses aligned with duration guidelines. However, 69.0 percent of the courses did not include simultaneous topical retinoid therapy. If prolonged courses became aligned with guidelines (i.e., courses six months or longer shortened to less than six months), a mean of $592.26 per person could be saved. For the most frequent course duration (90 to 179 days), the mean costs of generic and branded formulations were $103.77 and $1,421.61, respectively.

"Costs of antibiotic therapy were lower for shorter courses and those using generic medications; the cost-effectiveness of these modifications has not been investigated," the authors write.

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