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Cortisone Shots for Acne Emergencies

Have you ever felt a huge, painful acne cyst developing (as I like to call it, “growing”), underneath your skin’s surface?  It’s almost like I’ve trained myself to feel the first stirrings of a zit brewing beneath my skin’s suface. It doesn’t even have to be a huge cyst – I can usually tell, after years of struggling with the skin condition in my teens, when and where I’m going to get one before it even pops up.

I remembers a close family member of mine telling me that she had gone to her dermatologist to get a shot to get rid of one of her more painful acne cysts, and I was too young to understand all of what that meant, or how a shot could really clear anything up.

Well, that shot she was referring to is a cortisone shot. Cortisone is an anti inflammatory topical and below the surface steroid, which can almost instantly deflate an otherwise troublesome acne cyst that can be painful and long-lived if it is not treated.

Acne cysts can be long-lived because they start so far down below the surface that they don’t actually come up and become totally visible for days or even weeks sometimes, to where they can be safely extracted without creating many acne scars that will be hard to get rid of.

A cortisone shot is usually used as a sort of last resort for people who may have a big event that’s stressing them out, and have formed a huge cyst that they need to really get rid of in the next few days with minimal scarring and redness.  The shots usually run anywhere from $100 or more, and of course the doctors visit itself will usually cost you as well.

The medication is injected right into the site of the acne cyst, where the anti inflammatory properties of the cortisone can go to work right away, directly on the site in question.

The site of the cyst may be quite swollen and even a little red for the next several hours, but it typically will go down in about 24-48 hours after the shot is administered, which usually is in time for most people who get them.

Is it painful?  Well, essentially you are getting a shot in the face, so it may sting for a few seconds while the medication is being deposited into the cyst, but it will subside pretty quickly. It also depends on what area of the face the cortisone shot is being given.  Some areas of the face are more sensitive than others.

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April 6, 2011 at 3:40 pm
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