Intimate dryness may be side effect of acne medication

About half of Finns suffer from some form of acne in their late puberty. It usually occurs in girls between the ages of 14 and 17, but it can also occur later, even after the age of 35. In most cases, daily washing and skin care are enough to relieve the symptoms of acne, but sometimes it is best to see a doctor.

The treatment for severe acne is often isotretinoin, which is the most effective internal acne treatment. Isotretinoin is a vitamin A-based medicine taken orally for 6 to 12 months to treat acne. The most common side effect that may occur during the treatment is dryness of the mucous membranes and skin. (1) Symptoms of intimate dryness include burning, itching and irritation in the vaginal mucosa. The symptoms are most severe at the beginning of the treatment. They can interfere with everyday life and the enjoyment of physical exercise and intimacy.

Non-hormonal cream relieves the symptoms safely

The use of moisturising creams is the primary treatment for intimate dryness (2, 3). Topical creams containing small amounts of oestrogen are one option (2, 3), however, non-hormonal therapies may be more appropriate for some women. For example, the use of hormone preparations, even topically, is not usually recommended for breast cancer patients (4).

Sea buckthorn oil is a non-hormonal treatment solution that promotes the normal functioning of mucous membranes (5, 6). In clinical trials, the use of topical sea buckthorn oil cream (Membrasin® Vaginal Vitality cream) has been shown to relieve the symptoms of intimate dryness and irritation and tenderness in the vaginal area (7). The healing effect that sea buckthorn oil cream has on mucous membranes is likely due to the combination of the sea buckthorn oil’s protective effect and the hyaluronic acid’s moisturising effect.

SBA24® sea buckthorn oil capsules (Membrasin® Feminine Moisturizer supplement*) contain plenty of essential omega fatty acids, vitamin E, and carotenoids, which are precursors to vitamin A. Vitamin A promotes the well-being of mucous membranes, and vitamin E protects the cells from oxidative stress (8). Sea buckthorn oil taken as a dietary supplement has effects that strengthen the mucosa, which are likely due to the combined effect of all these components (5, 8).

*Dietary supplement: contains beta-carotene, a source of vitamin A that supports the maintenance of normal vision and skin. Vitamin E supports the protection of cells from oxidative stress

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