Herbal Medicines Poster Abstract
Roxy Hedges, Laura Galvao, Maryam Ebrahim
How effective is Tea Tree Oil for treatment of Acne?
Mechanism of Action
Tea tree has antibacterial and anti fungal properties that allow for minimizing redness and swelling caused by these pathogens. Terminen-4-ol reduces the production of IL-1, IL-8, IL-10, and prostaglandin E2.
Some common side effects include local irritation or inflammation, allergic contact dermatitis, and skin dryness.
There are no known drug interactions with tea tree oil.
- In Hammer et al’s review “Treatment of acne with tea tree oil (melaleuca) products: a review of efficacy, tolerability and potential modes of action”, we learn that 5% tea tree oil cream can be used in mild to moderate acne. For mild to moderate acne, tea tree oil is better than benzoyl peroxide lotion when used for inflamed lesions. Tea tree oil was used twice a day for 8 weeks, and had less oiliness than benzoyl peroxide. However, tea tree oil also had more reported burning and stinging. This study looked at seven publications from 1990-2014 to determine evidence of tea tree oil used to treat acne. Most of the seven studies were comparative, three were randomized controlled trials. It wasn’t mentioned what they meant by comparative, so that would be a limitation as well as using a study from 1990 since that would be outdated.
- In Ahmad et al’s review “Treatment of acne with tea tree oil (melaleuca) products: a review of efficacy, tolerability and potential modes of action” we learn that tea tree oil can be used for mild to moderate acne. However, tea tree oil is associated with dermal burning and stinging so it is advised to test on a small area first, but otherwise is a great natural product to use to fight acne. This is a review of 40 studies ranging from 1990-2018 looking for evidence of efficacy of tea tree oil to treat mild-moderate acne. The study did not list limitations, but it did list issues that frequently occur with tea tree such as environmental factors that may play a role in increasing sensitivity and adverse effects to tea tree oil.
Tea tree oil combats bacteria, fungus, and other pathogens found on the skin, reducing inflammation. It has been effective for and can be used to treat mild-moderate acne. Due to its potential to cause dermal irritation, using a strength of 5% or lower is ideal and should be tested on a small part of skin before general use. We learned that tea tree oil fights inflammation mostly by attacking the pathogens at fault, but also by acting as a sort of superficial prostaglandin inhibitor. We also learned that tea tree oil is comparable to other acne treatments.
- Hammer, K. A. (2015). Treatment of acne with tea tree oil (melaleuca) products: a review of efficacy, tolerability and potential modes of action. International journal of antimicrobial agents, 45(2), 106-110.
- Ahmad, S., & Popli, H. (2019). A review on efficacy and tolerability of tea tree oil for acne. Journal of Drug Delivery and Therapeutics, 9(3), 609-612.
- (2021, April, 26). Natural Medicines Database. Tea Tree Oil. https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/search.aspx?q=tea+tree+oil&go.x=9&go.y=0
- Natural Products Database, Tea Tree Oil
- (2020, Nov 14). Tea Tree Oil. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements-tea-tree-oil/art-20364246
- Dover, J. S. (2019, September, 26). Up-To-Date. Light-based, adjunctive, and other therapies for acne vulgaris
https://www-uptodate-com.ezproxy.lib.utah.edu/contents/light-based-adjunctive-and-other-therapies-for-acne-vulgaris?search=tea%20tree%20oil&source=search_result&selectedTitle=1~13&usage_type=default&display_rank=1Recommend0 recommendationsPublished in