Spironolactone Therapy Side Effects in Women with Acne

Title: Effects and side-effects of spironolactone therapy in women with acne
Yemisci A, Gorgulu A, Piskin S.
Publication: J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2005 Mar;19(2):163-6.

Spironolactone is an androgen or male sex hormone receptor blocker, and since male sex hormone has been shown to cause acne, the authors wanted to test whether it can be used as acne treatment in women.

In this study, the authors gave 35 female acne patients 100 mg / day of spironolactone for 16 days per month for a total of 3 months. Six patients dropped out of the study (because of side effects and lack of follow up), so out of the remaining 24 patients, significant improvement was seen in about 86% of the cases, evaluated by counting the acne lesion before and after treatment. When their blood was tested, these patients had decreased levels of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS), but no change in their levels of testosterone. The author concluded that despite the high side-effects, spironolactone can be an effective acne treatment for the majority of women.

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