Personality traits and common psychiatric conditions in adult patients with acne vulgaris

Ann Dermatol. 2015 Feb;27(1):48-52. doi: 10.5021/ad.2015.27.1.48. Epub 2015 Feb 3.


Background: We believe that instances of neuroticism and common psychiatric disorders are higher in adults with acne vulgaris than the normal population.

Objective: Instances of acne in adults have been increasing in frequency in recent years. The aim of this study was to investigate personality traits and common psychiatric conditions in patients with adult acne vulgaris.

Methods: Patients who visited the dermatology outpatient clinic at Bozok University Medical School with a complaint of acne and who volunteered for this study were included. The Symptom Checklist 90-Revised (SCL 90-R) Global Symptom Index (GSI), somatization, depression, and anxiety subscales and the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire-Revised Short Form (EPQ-RSF) were administered to 40 patients who fulfilled the inclusion criteria before treatment. The results were compared with those of a control group.

Results: Of the 40 patients included in this study, 34 were female and 6 were male. The GSI and the somatization, depression, and anxiety subscales of the SCL 90-R were evaluated. Patients with adult acne had statistically significant higher scores than the control group on all of these subscales. In addition, patients with adult acne had statistically significantly higher scores on the neuroticism subscale of the EPQ-RSF.

Conclusion: Our results show that common psychiatric conditions are frequent in adult patients with acne. More importantly, neurotic personality characteristics are observed more frequently in these patients. These findings suggest that acne in adults is a disorder that has both medical and psychosomatic characteristics and requires a multi-disciplinary approach.

Keywords: Acne; Anxiety; Depression; Neuroticism.