What You Need to Know About Acne

What Is Acne?

Acne is the term for inflammation of the sebaceous glands. It results in plugged pores, pimples, and even deeper lumps that occur on the face, neck, chest, back, shoulders and even the upper arms.

What Causes Acne?

The exact cause of acne is not known, however, several factors contribute to the development of acne. These include rising hormone levels, heredity, and genetics.

The condition can also be aggravated by the following:

  • Stress
  • Environmental factors
  • Hormonal changes

Who Does Acne Affect?

Acne is most common during adolescence, affecting three out of every four teenagers. However, it can also affect people in their 20s, 30s and 40s and pregnant women are also prone to breakouts.


Common symptoms of acne include the following:

  • Whiteheads (below the skin surface)
  • Blackheads (open comedones)
  • Nodules (large and firm lumps below the skin)
  • Pustules (yellowish lumps on the skin surface)
  • Pimples (red spots with no pus)
  • Cysts (very painful pus-filled sac, under the skin tissue and about 5mm in diameter)
  • Dry, pink and itchy skin


Acne is not considered a serious health concern, however, it can have a crippling effect on a person’s self-esteem and well-being. People with acne may feel discouraged from pursuing social, academic, personal and professional opportunities because they are self conscious about their appearance.


Improvements in acne treatment over the past 5 years have made even the most difficult acne cases treatable, and have produced excellent long-term results.

At Appletree Acne Clinics your physician will review your previous treatment plans, current treatment, and future goals in managing and treating your acne.

Download Acne Brochure

What to Expect During Your Appointment

An acne assessment begins with a questionnaire that will capture your relevant medical history. The staff will take pictures of the affected area(s), so that the physician can identify signs of improvement during future visits.

The doctor will review your treatment options in terms of oral medications, topical medications, as well as skin care routine.

After Your Appointment

You will be booked a follow up appointment at the end of your visit. Depending on the treatment regimen, the follow-up appointment could be between 1 to 3 months later.

Sign up for your secure, personal Patient Portal to easily book and reschedule Acne Clinic appointments.

How Can I Access This Service?

This service is available for the Ottawa region only.


This service is available at select Appletree Medical Centres. Book via Patient Portal.

Virtual Care

This service is also available via Virtual Care. Book Online.

Book Your Appointment

The following schedules vary frequently, always consult our website to view the most up-to-date availability. Acne appointments are available at the following Appletree Medical Centres:

How to Book

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a referral?

No, a referral is not required for this type of appointment. You can book an appointment through your Patient Portal, over the phone, or in person at one of the locations listed above.

Is this visit covered by OHIP?

Yes, the consultation and assessment with the physician is covered by OHIP. Treatment options will be discussed, but in most cases, the cost of the treatment is the responsibility of the patient.

How should I prepare for my appointment?

Bring a list of your current medications, if any, and make a note of the hygiene and cosmetic products and brands you use (i.e. face wash, soap, shampoo, and make up).

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