Association of Serum Testosterone with Acne Vulgaris in Women
Background: Androgens enhance the sebum production and follicular keratosis that plays the key role in the aetiology of acne. Objective: To find out the association between serum testosterone and acne vulgaris. Methods: A case control study was carried out for a period of two years in the outpatient department of Dermatology and Venereology, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU), Dhaka, Bangladesh. Female patients having acne vulgaris were selected as case. Healthy control (age and sex matched) were enrolled from the community. Results: The study showed that the mean age of the cases was 22.43 with standard deviation 5.2 years and the mean age of the control was 23.23 with standard deviation 5.9 years. The mean duration of disease was 62.6 months ranging from 12 months to 300 months. All the patients had presented with comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) followed by 94.3% had papules and 58.6% had pustules. Considering the site of lesion, all the patients had acne in the face. Data analysis revealed that the percentage of serum testosterone above normal was found to be high among the cases with acne (10%) whereas below normal level of serum testosterone was found among the control and the difference was statistically significant (p<0.001). Conclusion:The study found a significant association between serum testosterone and acne vulgaris. As serum testosterone is associated with acne vulgaris, testosterone levels should be measured in patients presenting with acne vulgaris especially in treatment resistant cases and anti-androgen treatment may be indicated in cases with elevated testosterone level.
BSMMU J 2012; 5(1):1-5