Can fungus cause acne?

Yes! Believe it or not acne may not always be caused by skin bacteria. In fact, there is a type of acne called pityrosporum folliculitis or Malassezia folliculitis which is caused by a yeast that lives in the hair follicle (also referred to as a the pilosebaceous unit). 


These bumps on the skin typically appear as monomorphic (i.e. meaning they appear the same) pus-filled bumps on the face, chest and back and typically lack the classic black and white heads (i.e. comedonal acne). 


How can I treat this type of acneiform eruption?

Treatment of fungal acne differs from classic bacteria-driven acne. An initial step is a sulfur-based cleanser. Sulfur based cleansers are available both over-the-counter and prescription. Topical antifungal prescription and over-the-counter creams may be helpful in the treatment and prevention of fungal acne.


Discuss with your board-certified dermatologist regarding ways to tackle this type of acne and how to best prevent breakouts.

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