Myo-inositol promotes the entry of glucose into the cell and is a safe and often effective supplement to recommend for acne, particularly for those patients who do not want traditional treatments, such as antibiotics, spironolactone, or isotretinoin, Jonette Elizabeth Keri, MD, PhD, professor of dermatology at the University of Miami, said during a presentation on therapies for acne at the annual Integrative Dermatology Symposium.
Probiotics and omega-3 fatty acids are among the other complementary therapies that have a role in acne treatment, she and others said during the meeting.
Myo-inositol has been well-studied in the gynecology-endocrinology community in patients with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), demonstrating an ability to improve the metabolic profile and reduce acne and hirsutism, Dr Keri said.
A study of 137 young, overweight women with PCOS and moderate acne, for example, found that compared with placebo, 6 months of myo-inositol or D-chiro-inositol, another isoform of inositol, significantly improved the acne score, endocrine and metabolic parameters, insulin resistance, and regularity of the menstrual cycle, Dr Keri said. Both isoforms of inositol are second messengers in the signal transduction of insulin.
During a panel discussion, asked about a case of an adult female with acne, Dr Keri said that many of her adult female patients “don’t want to do isotretinoin or antibiotics, and they don’t want to do any kind of hormonal treatment,” the options she would recommend. But for patients who do not want these treatments, she said, “I go down the route of supplements,” and myo-inositol is her “favorite” option. It’s safe to use during pregnancy, she emphasized, noting that myo-inositol is being studied for the prevention of preterm birth.
Dr Keri, who described herself as “more of a traditionalist,” prescribes myo-inositol 2 g twice a day in pill form. In Europe, she noted in her presentation, myo-inositol is also compounded for topical use.
Diet, Probiotics, Other Nutraceuticals
A low-glycemic-load diet was among several complementary therapies reported in a 2015 Cochrane Database Systematic Review to have some evidence (though low-quality) of reducing total skin lesions in acne (along with tea tree oil and bee venom), and today, it is the most evidence-based dietary recommendation for acne, Dr Keri said.
Omega-3 fatty acids and increased fruit and vegetable intake have also been reported to be acne-protective — and hyperglycemia, carbohydrates, milk and dairy products, and saturated fats and trans fats have been reported to be acne-promoting, she noted.
But the low-glycemic-load data “are the strongest,” she said. The best advice for patients, she added, is to consume less sugar and fewer sugary drinks and “avoid white foods” such as white bread, rice, and pasta.
Probiotics can also be recommended, especially for patients on antibiotic therapy, Dr Keri said. For “basic science evidence,” she pointed to a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study of 20 adults with acne, which evaluated the impact of a probiotic on improvement in acne and skin expression of genes involved with insulin signaling. Participants took either a liquid supplement containing Lactobacillus rhamnosus SP1 (LSP1) or placebo over a 12-week period. The investigators performed paired skin biopsies before and after 12 weeks of treatment and analyzed them for insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) and forkhead box protein O1 (FOXO1) gene expression.
They found that compared with baseline, the probiotic group showed a 32% reduction in IGF1 and a 65% increase in FOXO1 gene expression (P
Clinically, patients in the probiotic group had an adjusted odds ratio of 28.4 (95% CI, 2.2-411.1; P
Dr Keri and others at the meeting also referenced a 2013 prospective, open-label trial that randomized 45 women with acne, ages 18-35 years, to one of three arms: Probiotic supplementation only, minocycline only, and both probiotic and minocycline. The probiotic used was a product containing Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus bulgaricus, and Bifidobacterium bifidum. At 8 and 12 weeks, the combination group “did the best with the lowest total lesion count” compared with the probiotic group and the minocycline group, differences that were significant (P P
In addition to reducing potential adverse events secondary to chronic antibiotic use, probiotics can have synergistic anti-inflammatory effects, she said.
Dr Keri said she recommends probiotics for patients taking antibiotics and encourages them “to get a branded probiotic,” such as Culturelle, “or if they prefer a food source, soy or almond milk–based yogurt.” As with other elements of a holistic approach to acne, she urged clinicians to consider the cost of treatment.
Probiotics (Lactobacillus plantarum) were one of four nutraceuticals determined in a 2023 systematic review to have “good-quality” evidence for potential efficacy, Dr Keri noted, along with vitamin D, green tea extract, and cheongsangbangpoong-tang, the latter of which is an herbal therapeutic formula approved by the Korean Food and Drug Administration for use in acne.
“There were really no bad systemic effects for any of these,” she said. “The tricky part of this review is that each of the four have only one study” deemed to be a good-quality study. Omega-3 fatty acids were among several other nutraceuticals deemed to have “fair-quality” evidence for efficacy. Zinc was reported to be the most studied nutraceutical in acne but didn’t rate as highly in the review. Dr Keri said she likes to include zinc in her armamentarium because “it can be used in pregnant women,” noting that reviews and guidelines “are just that, a guide…to combine with experience.”
Omega-3 Fatty Acids With Isotretinoin
Several speakers at the meeting, including Steven Daveluy, MD, associate professor and residency program director in the department of dermatology, Wayne State University, Dearborn, Michigan, spoke about the value of omega-3 fatty acids in reducing side effects of isotretinoin. “In the FDA trials [of isotretinoin], they had patients take 50 g of fat,” he said. “You can use the good fats to help you out.”
Research has shown that 1 g per day of oral omega-3 reduces dryness of the lips, nose, eyes, and skin, “which are the big side effects we see with isotretinoin,” he said. An impact on triglyceride levels has also been demonstrated, Dr Daveluy said, pointing to a longitudinal survey study of 39 patients treated with isotretinoin that showed a mean increase in triglyceride levels of 49% during treatment in patients who did not use omega-3 supplementation, compared with a mean increase of 13.9% (P = .04) in patients who used the supplements. “There is also evidence that omega-3 can decrease depression, which may or may not be a side effect of isotretinoin…but it’s something we consider in our [acne] patients,” Dr Daveluy said.
During a panel discussion at the meeting, Apple A. Bodemer, MD, associate professor of dermatology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, said she usually prescribes 2 g of docosahexaenoic acid eicosapentaenoic acid combined in patients on isotretinoin because “at that dose, omega-3s have been found to be anti-inflammatory.”
Dr Keri reported being an investigator and speaker for Galderma and an advisory board member for Ortho Dermatologics and for Almirall. Dr Daveluy reported no relevant disclosures.
This article originally appeared on MDedge.com, part of the Medscape Professional Network.
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Publish date : 2024-01-11 05:37:03
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