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Summary

Background.  Vitamin A and E are lipid soluble antioxidants that are necessary for our health. Deficiency in these vitamins can cause serious diseases. Administration of vitamin A and E to patients with acne was shown to improve their acne condition.

Aims.  To test the relationship between plasma vitamin A and E levels and acne.

Methods.  Plasma vitamin A and E concentrations were determined by high performance liquid chromatography in 100 newly diagnosed untreated patients with acne and were compared with those of 100 age-matched healthy controls. Patients were carefully graded using the Global Acne Grading System.

Results.  We found that plasma vitamin A concentrations in patients with acne were significantly lower than those of the control group (336.5 vs. 418.1 μg/L, respectively) P = 0.007. We also found that plasma vitamin E concentrations in patients with acne were significantly lower than those of controls (5.4 vs. 5.9 mg/L) P = 0.05. In addition, we found that there is a strong relationship between decrease in plasma vitamin A levels and increase in the severity of acne condition. Patients with severe acne had significantly lower plasma concentrations of vitamins A and E than did those with lower acne grade and the age-matched healthy controls.

Discussion.  Based on our results, we conclude that low vitamin A and E plasma levels have an important role in the pathogenesis of acne and in the aggravation of this condition.