Nodular Acne (Nodules)

Acne nodules are one of the severe form of acne vulgaris. Unlike lesions associated with mild-to-moderate forms of acne vulgaris that present on or near the skin's surface, nodular acne spots form well underneath the skin and are characterized by large, hard and painful bumps.

It develops from the progression of papules or pustules that rupture well beneath the epidermal layer, releasing pus into the dermis. Since the contents of these pus contaminate the dermis, the lesions will harden and forming  nodular acne .

Nodular acne can occur on the face, back, and body. This type of acne can cause severe scarring, and should be treated by a dermatologist.

Nodular acne will form hard, dense lesions, which can also be swollen, red or uneven, affecting the deeper layers of the skin. It can be very painful and without immediate attention it can rapidly intensify. Even in cases where appropriate nodular acne treatment is applied, the lesions will leave a certain amount of scarring behind.


Most acne including nodular acne is typically the result of hormonal changes and fluctuations. Changes in hormones are common in teens,  pregnant women. People who use certain medications, such as cortisone, may also experience increases in hormone levels.

The other cause is due to over production of sebum. When oil is produced rapidly, it tends to build more dead skin cells. This is where bacteria may form and multiply and result in nodular acne. The use of oily products can also be the main cause of nodular acne.

Formation of nodules

The first step in the appearance of acne lesions is the increased production of sebum. When the body produces excess sebum, it doesn't have time to travel onto the skin's surface. Instead, hair follicles become plugged with sebum and dead skins. The excess oil serves as ideal growth environment for acne-causing bacteria.

Generally, nodular acne are formed from the buildup of sebum, dead skin cells and bacteria in the follicles that blocks pore deep in the skin. This causes deep tissue damage and a correspondingly extensive inflammatory response from the immune system.


Typically preventing nodular acne involves a regular skin cleansing routine with products designed to kill the bacteria that causes acne vulgaris without causing excessive dryness or irritation of the skin. This type of acne is more severe and can lead to scarring, so most prevention measures should include skin treatment products that a dermatologist recommends.

Another option for acne nodule prevention is to use a cleanser and cream with salicylic acid. This ingredient can also treat existing blemishes and keep new acne nodules from forming.


The best way to treat nodular acne is to address it immediately during its early stages. This is to prevent further infection and scarring. Currently, creams are available for acne treatment from mild acne to nodular acne. But, nodular acne is a severe kind of acne and needs oral antibiotic and laser treatment. Antibiotics may be prescribed to help stop infection and prevent further break outs. Antibiotics also help minimize inflammations and ease the swelling of the skin.

› Nodules


severe acne, acne vulgaris, papules, pustulesprevention, scarring, salicylic acid, acne treatment

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