Acne is among the most frequent skin problems. About 80 percent of people between the ages of 11 and 30 will develop acne at some point, according to the National Institutes of Health. For most, acne will likely be merely a light comedone (blackhead or whitehead) that clears up alone without noticeable scar tissue. Unfortunately, for other people, acne can become a chronic problem creating more serious inflammatory acne, including acne cysts or nodules. Inflammatory acne causes greater injury to your skin, which could lead to serious acne scarring, including depressed scars called “ice pick” scars.
Ice pick scars begin like a mild type of acne referred to as a comedone, also called a whitehead or blackhead. A comedone forms when oil secreted from the skin oil glands, called sebum, combines with excess skin cells inside the follicles of the skin. A combination of these two ingredients generates a soft plug blocking the follicle.
As soon as a comedone continues to be formed, bacteria set out to multiply in the blocked follicle. The body’s immunity mechanism sends white blood cells towards the area affected to combat off of the infection. Pus is formed, as white blood cells build up. The combination of sebum, bacteria and white blood cells can burst into the surrounding skin, resulting in further skin irritation and inflammation, as pus builds inside the follicle.
Pressure can build, as inflammation builds behind the acne lesion. The pressure causes the redness to advance deeper in the skin, causing damage as being the inflammation spreads. This can lead to the development of significant types of acne referred to as cysts or nodules. If the pressure is not relieved, the cyst or nodule can burst, causing even more skin tissue damage, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
Collagen and Fibrin
The production and structure of the collagen in the affected tissue becomes disrupted, as inflammation damages skin tissue. This disruption brings about the loss of fibrin and collagen within the involved area. Without it fibrin and collagen, the resulting scar tissue through the acne inflammation sinks in to the skin, creating the look of an “ice pick” mark onto the skin.