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Shining a New Light on the Treatment of Acne with AviClear

Article-Shining a New Light on the Treatment of Acne with AviClear

Sponsored by Cutera Roughly four out of five moderate to severe acne sufferers have reported that they have missed out on major life events due to their acne. Cutera® (Brisbane,Calif.) is redefining traditional acne care with AviClear™, the first and only FDA-cleared energy-based device for the treatment of mild, moderate and severe acne.

Sponsored by Cutera

Acne is considered one of the most common dermatologic conditions affecting approximately 50 million North American teens and young adults.1 Roughly four out of five moderate to severe acne sufferers have reported that they have missed out on major life events due to their acne.2Cutera® (Brisbane,Calif.) is redefining traditional acne care with AviClear™, the first and only FDA-cleared energy-based device for the treatment of mild, moderate and severe acne.

The Emotional Impact of Acne on Patients

“Acne is the most common skin disease in the U.S.,” explained Jeffrey Dover,  MD, dermatologist and director of SkinCare Physicians (Chestnut Hill, Mass.). “It can cause poor self-image, anxiety, depression and have a negative psychological impact.” 

Billie Casse, DO, a board-certified dermatologist at Reno Tahoe Dermatology (Reno, Nev.), sees first hand how acne impacts her patients. “The best way to describe acne and how it affects people is ‘life-changing’,” she said. “It alters your self-esteem; it often leads to depression and can interfere with your daily routine and activities. Individuals who suffer from acne often avoid social events where photos might be taken of them, such as weddings and celebrations or situations where they might be a primary focus, like first dates. Just in the U.S. alone, the cost of acne in terms of treatment and loss of productivity is over $3 billion per year.”3

According to a survey conducted on behalf of Cutera, nearly 80% of moderate to severe acne sufferers admit that acne pre-vents them from living their lives the way they want.3 Michael Gold, MD, founder of Gold Skin Care Center (Nashville, Tenn.), shared with us that this survey aligns with what he sees in his practice. “Despite many people having a psychological impact from years  of acne, most physicians agree that compliance with current treatments is often challenging, and insurance may not always cover the required medications.”

Missed Moments Survey
Acne has both a physical and emotional impact on those who suffer from it, and the survey revealed information that matches up to what physicians hear from their patients every day.

According to the survey, 90% of moderate to severe acne sufferers said having clear skin would change the way they live their lives, including things such as2:

  • Stop canceling plans
  • Spend more time with friends and family
  • Wear less or no makeup
  • Go on dates

The survey also found that two in three sufferers wish they could relive significant events and moments they missed.

The Hurdles of Current Acne Treatments
Patients suffering from acne are often on a variety of medications and over-the-counter products throughout their acne journey. Even with new medications on the market, the treatments remain cumbersome, can have serious side effects, and do not fit into the patients’ active lifestyles. Prescription treatments may also include monthly lab tests, iPledge documentation and strict compliance, making it frustrating and burdensome for acne patients and parents of sufferers who are seeking a safe and effective treatment. Patients also experience frustration with the lack of chemical-free options and the high  probability of acne rebound when the treatment is stopped. 

David Goldberg, MD, medical director of Skin Laser & Surgery Specialists (New York, N.Y.), has experience with the issues many patients face when using prescription treatments. “Compliance is a huge issue in acne patients,”he shared. “Taking medications every day, applying topical medications twice each day, along with lab tests and iPledge documentation for isotretinoin patients can be exhausting, sometimes with little patient reward.” Indeed, it seems that current treatments had come to a standstill, until now.

Changing the Acne Treatment Paradigm
Physicians and practitioners now can help acne patients of all skin types, ethnicities and acne severities with AviClear.

“AviClear is safe to use on all skin types with minimal discomfort – and it works,” Dr. Goldberg expressed. “Moderate and severe acne patients often require years of antibiotics or isotretinoin with a risk of side effects, but now we have another treatment option with AviClear.”

“Patients can now trade all this for three simple 30-minute AviClear treatments without the risks associated with oral medications,” he stated.

Dr. Dover agrees that acne patients have a new hope. “AviClear has the potential to give durable responses after a series of three well-tolerated treatments,” he shared. “In the studies performed, 87% of patients had a > 50% reduction in inflammatory lesions at six months after the final treatment session, up from 80% at three months (primary endpoint, P<.001>2

Dr. Gold reiterated that this technology may be an important new option for many suffering from acne who want a prescription-like effect without taking a variety of medications. “It is a huge advantage; neither patients nor doctors like iPledge, and most would prefer therapies without having monthly labs done or pregnancy tests for the women who go on isotretinoin,” he shared. “And this drug-free treatment resolves active acne without a prescription.”

AviClear Technology
Overproduction of sebum by the sebaceous glands is one of the leading causes of acne.4 AviClear’s 1726 nm wavelength laser is designed to treat acne at the source by selectively targeting sebocytes to suppress sebum production.

“AviClear is different than anything we have ever had in treating acne,” Dr. Casse reported. “Increased sebum excretion from the sebaceous gland is a major factor in the pathophysiology of acne, but there are other sebaceous gland functions associated with the development of acne. These include sebaceous proinflammatory lipids, inflammatory cytokines produced locally, periglandular peptides and neuropeptides, such as corticotrophin-releasing hormones, produced by sebocytes and substance P5, all of which are involved in the acne process. So being able to inactivate the problem at the source is vital to the long-term treatment of acne.”

“I feel the most impressive part of this technology is that they have found a wavelength of light that specifically targets the sebaceous gland,” added Dr. Gold. “This has not been an easy task and with proper cooling, they have shown it to be safe and effective for our patients.”

AviClear was engineered with patient comfort in mind and has proven to be well-tolerated, comfortable and requires no pain mitigation. Together, the AviCool™ sapphire contact cooling technology and sensory controls help maintain the skin’s temperature at a cool 2° C, which enhances the treatment experience while maintaining a high safety margin.

According to the AviClear pivotal study, 91% of patients responded to the treatment, and 87% saw at least half their acne cleared six months after three 30-minute sessions.6 Results continue to improve over time, with select patients showing long-term clearance two years after their treatment series.2

In a recent study, 88% of patients felt their skin looked better three months after the final treatment session, with 85% of patients reporting that their skin looks and feels smoother three months after the final treatment session.2

“Should these studies be reproduced with larger numbers, and based on my experience now that it is approved by the FDA, the AviClear technology has the potential to alter our algorithm for treating moderate to severe acne and obviating the need for some systemic therapies,” explained Dr. Dover.

Summary of AviClear Benefits
AviClear is a drug-free, prescription-free therapy that is safe for all skin types. Additionally, it requires no lab work or daily routine. Three simple, 30-minute applications fulfill the protocol making compliance much easier and the entire process more convenient than most standard acne therapy. AviClear has redefined the treat-ment of acne and gives patients an alternative option they can feel hopeful about.

“As more and more physicians understand that devices can play a role in treating acne patients, AviClear will provide them with a new option to treat patients while avoiding adverse effects,” emphasized Dr. Gold. “The clinical studies showed that with three monthly treatments, most patients cleared nicely and maintained the clearance of acne over time.”

In Dr. Casse’s experience, the results are as good or even more effective than current treatments. “People with acne are looking at months to years of acne topicals, prescriptions, or oral medications like antibiotics and sometimes isotretinoin, regardless of severity,” she began. “However, multiple factors cause acne, and the current regimens are not curing the acne, but decreasing or holding off the breakouts. In most cases, if the patient stops the regimen, the acne returns. With AviClear, there are only three treatments, done around three to four weeks apart. There is no downtime and it can be done any time of the year.”

AviClear - The Future of Acne Treatment
AviClear will change the future of acne treatment. According to Dr. Gold, AviClear will add another sound method to improve patients’ skin. “Cosmetic practices that focus only on aesthetics will have an opportunity to add a tool that will attract new patients, he noted. “When new acne patients go to an aesthetic practice for acne treatment, they may eventually convert to other procedures as they receive an amazing boost in self-confidence.”

Where other acne treatments have remained stagnant, AviClear is paving the way to treat acne by targeting sebaceous glands; a technology that has not been available in the past, as proven by the standard and current treatments. Physicians can now determine if their patients’ current treatments are still viable or if they need an update. AviClear may be used alone or in combination with other treatments, further adding to the physician’s treatment armamentarium.

Some patients may use AviClear as a supplemental or adjunct treatment to prepare for upcoming events such as weddings or vacations. Supplemental treatments can be an excellent first step for patients to become familiarized with AviClear and its benefits, making these new patients comfortable returning for subsequent treatments.

Dr. Goldberg shared that he envisions a totally new patient for physicians and their practices. “Five years from now, very few patients will use isotretinoin. The majority of those using long-term antibiotics will now have a much safer and effective alternative in AviClear,” he exclaimed. “Aesthetic practices have been treating acne scarring for years – now they can treat the cause of the scarring.”

According to Dr. Dover, the AviClear laser can be used by a variety of providers, including general dermatologists and those who treat acne regularly. Also, physicians with device-based practices can add AviClear to their practice, giving them the potential to treat significant acne with durable responses in a non-medication-based approach.

Practices and physicians will have the oppor-tunity to significantly improve patient out-comes as they help change the face of acne treatments. “We finally have a medication-free option that eliminates acne for the long-term,”announced Dr. Casse. “It is another tool we can offer patients that will save time and money. Patients no longer have to miss memorable social events because of anxiety and depression induced by the disease. This is life-changing.”

Physicians and practices can add AviClear as an energy-based treatment for acne throughout 2022.

2. Cutera Inc., Data on file.
4. O’Neill AM, Gallo RL. Host-microbiome interactions and recent progress into understanding the biology of acne vulgaris.Microbiome 2018;6: 177.
5.,increases%6. Data on file, FDA clearance study. Cutera, Inc.

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