Examining the Interaction Between Mental Health, Race, Ethnicity, and Acne


Acne patients who come from different racial and ethnic backgrounds may differ with clinical presentation, according to a letter to the editor of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. This can include complications such as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH), hypertrophic scarring, and treatment plans.1

Although the differences have been studied, there is still a lot to learn about the impact acne has on the mental health of different races and ethnicities. In response, this survey aimed to assess the different impacts of acne on mental health in patients of different racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Nationally, a cross-sectional trial comparing the mental health outcomes of white patients versus those of skin of color (SOC) using the medical expenditure panel survey from 2004 to 2017 Have been realised. The SOC population for the study was defined as patients who identified as Black, Native American / Alaskan Native, Asians, Native Hawaiian / Pacific Islander, or multi-racial.

Overall, 6,952,001 white patients and 1,585,263 SOC patients with acne who reported mental health problems were included in the study data. For more information on the characteristics of these patients, see the table here.

Researchers found that acne patients of all races and ethnicities appeared to have similar mental health issues. “As several studies have suggested that patients with acne are at increased risk for anxiety and depression, it is important to treat acne in patients of all races and ethnicities adequately to reduce the impact of co-morbidities. mental health, ”the authors wrote.2.3

Although no differences were found between the groups, the researchers note that the disparities in access to acne treatment between these groups should be recognized and doctors should advocate for better access to treatment for acne. acne for all patients.

The authors also noted the limitations of the study on the lack of information regarding the severity of acne or complications that may affect mental health outcomes in these patients from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey.

This article was originally published by sister publication Dermatology Times.

The references

  1. Kohn AH, Pourali SP, Rajkumar JR, Hekmatjah J, Armstrong AW. Mental health outcomes and their association with race and ethnicity in acne patients: a population-based study. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2021; 0 (0). doi: 10.1016 / j.jaad.2021.06.866
  2. Acne vulgaris and the risk of depression and anxiety: a meta-analytical review. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2020; 83 (2): 532-541. doi: 10.1016 / j.jaad.2020.02.040
  3. Rogers AT, Semenov YR, Kwatra SG, Okoye GA. Racial Disparities in Acne Management: Data from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 2005-2014. Dermatological Treatment Journal. 2018; 29 (3): 287-289. doi: 10.1080 / 09546634.2017.1371836


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