The following diseases/conditions are often confused with acne. To effectively diagnose acne, these should be eliminated first. Many people with these diseases don’t realize they do not have acne and often blame the efficacy of the anti-acne product they are using.
Rosacea is a common condition characterized by symptoms of facial flushing and redness of the forehead, cheeks and nose (and less often, the neck and body). Clinical signs such as erythema, telangiectasia and coarseness of the skin are often present. Of the 4 identified rosacea subtypes, the inflammatory papulopustular variety is often confused with acne due to the presence of redness, papules and pustules. The exact cause of rosacea is unknown at this time.
Keratosis pilaris is a common genetic disease of the follicles. The rough, red, inflamed bumps due to hyperkeratinization is often confused with acne.
Folliculitis is an inflammation of the hair follicles. Infections, chemical irritants or physical trauma can cause this inflammation. Sometimes confused with acne.
Perioral dermatitis (POD) is a papulopustular facial dermatitis that can be confused with acne. Etiology of POD is unknown.
Acneiform Eruptions is a general term given to a number of diseases that resemble acne vulgaris. These diseases may have comedones, papules, pustules, nodules and cysts like acne but their etiologies vary from infections to drug reactions to growth abnormalities.