Advertisement

Will general topical antibiotics clear my acne?

Dr. Doris Day, MD
Dermatology
Topical antibiotic preparations such as Neosporin or bacitracin are very effective against specific types of bacterial infections that are common to the skin, such as staphylococcus or streptococcus skin infections. They are, however, not effective against Propionibacterium acnes. In fact, the ointment can even be occlusive, which can make the acne worse. The medications designed to treat acne are, likewise, ineffective against many of the other bacteria can cause different types of skin infections other than acne.

When looking for topical treatments for acne, look for labels that indicate that the medication is designed specifically for the treatment of acne and not just for general infections of the skin. 
100 Questions & Answers About Acne

More About this Book

100 Questions & Answers About Acne

100 Questions and Answers About Acne provides you with all the information you need to manage your complexion problems. Written by Dr. Doris J. Day, a world-class expert in the field, this clearly...

Continue Learning about Acne Treatment

How can skin-lightening creams help my acne?
Dr. Doris Day, MDDr. Doris Day, MD
Creams that are designed to lighten the skin are available; this can be very useful for hyperpigment...
More Answers
Which plant can help heal my skin blemishes?
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MDDr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Watch this video to learn more from Dr. Mehmet Oz about skin blemishes.  
More Answers
Are There Some Home Remedies for Acne?
Are There Some Home Remedies for Acne?
How Long Should a Typical Acne Pimple Last?
How Long Should a Typical Acne Pimple Last?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.