Philippine Dermatological Society

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Acne Summit 2018: “Mastery of Acne and Beyond”
EDSA Shangri-La Hotel, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong City
May 10, 2018
By: Dr. Maria Juliet Macarayo,FPDS

Welcome Remarks Drs. Ma. Flordeliz Abad-Casintahan and Purita Paz-Lao

Lecturers/Panelists   Drs. Ana Lucia Dela Paz, Maria Juliet Macarayo, Ma. Flordeliz

Abad-Casintahan, Maria Jennina Francisco-Diaz, Evangeline

Handog, Ma. Luisa Venida, Imelda Villar

Moderators               Drs. Aileen Montero, Leilani Senador, Maria Juliet Macarayo

Total number of attendees: 311

Acne-wise, there is ALWAYS a space for learning, as there are always NEW things to talk about this skin condition. Last May 10, 2018 – under the auspices of our mother society and Galderma Philippines, the Annual Acne Summit was conducted by our PDS colleagues, and attended by 311 attendees from the metropolis and different regions.

Every dermatologist must be a good “acneologist” – we have to be equipped with the correct knowledge – we have to be constantly updated. In this sense, we have to know more than our internet-savvy patients. Being the dermauthority, we are the foreground in the delivery of the acne-related information needed by the public.


The emphasis for this year laid on Moderate to Severe Acne and Acne Scar Management. Dr. Ana Lucia Dela Paz started the morning with a very engaging talk on “War against the Zits”, providing us with the latest updates on the 2018 acne classification and consensus recommendation on management of the different acne severities. Furthermore, Dr. Dela Paz imparted several factors to be considered for poor responders: disease progression, non-drug and drug-related reasons, patient adherence and adverse events. The feasibility of using a topical monotherapy (adapalene 0.3%/benzoyl peroxide 2.5% gel, Epiduo forte™) for moderate to severe acne vulgaris was introduced. Success was defined as improvement in condition by at least a 2-grade improvement from baseline. This was then followed by Dr. Juliet Macarayo’s discussion on the local experience of our PDS colleagues on the use of this high – powered fixed dose combination on Filipino patients with moderate to severe acne. In this Personal Experience Program (PEP) monotherapy trial, it showed a significant change from baseline to 12th week, described as downgrading from a score of IGA3 or 4 to IGA2 or 1. It was also noted by the investigators that there was resolution of the acne lesions as early as one to two weeks. Adverse effects such as drying, scaling, erythema and stinging were minimal and manageable with moisturizers and sunscreens. Dr. Ma. Flordeliz Abad-Casintahan covered an extensive talk on Acne Scar Management, supplementing the audience with the latest in epidemiology, pathogenesis and risk factors of the different types of acne scars. She also emphasized maximizing the available technology for the practicing dermatologist. Individualized combination treatment is necessary to achieve optimized aesthetic outcomes. Post-operative care is equally important to the surgical procedure to avoid complications. But for those patients who wish to have a non-procedural approach for their scars, Dr. Marie Socouer Oblepias provided a concise talk on the different modes to medically manage acne scars. Cited in her lecture are studies on the evolution of lesions wherein scars developed from inflammatory papules in majority of cases. She also highlighted the importance of early effective intervention in the prevention of this psychologically distressing condition.

The afternoon kicked off with a skinbooster (Restylane™) live-demo session headed by Dr. Maria Jeninna Francisco-Diaz. She showcased its immediate improvement on acne scars alongside its effect on skin rejuvenation. She elaborated on the skinbooster’s treatment matrix using stabilized hyaluronic acid that can restore the skin’s hydrobalance, improve skin structure and firmness, aside from having a niche in treating small facial depressed scars. What ensued next are two panel discussions – difficult acne cases and complicated acne scar cases. The participants gained insight from the different approaches to management utilized by acne experts. While it was worthwhile to note their different approaches, it is still up to the participants to weigh which of the methods they might wish to try or adapt, when faced with similar situations. Common to all were (1) the significance of a proper evaluation of each patient, (2) the importance of patience in extracting pertinent points in the history, and (3) the different treatment methods that are evidence-based, which may be used for the case or have been tried and proven effective.

The ACNE SUMMIT has proven, once and again, that no matter how simple ACNE may appear to be, it is a chronic skin problem that besets all age groups. Its existence creates different levels of anxiety for both the patient and the dermatologist. Sharing the current trends of management, evidence-based and experience-based, has, time and again, proven helpful in reassuring that there is always HOPE for every ACNE patient!