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Variability of over-the-counter spending on acne treatment across race and demographic characteristics

      Abstract

      Acne is a common skin condition that is associated with long-term dermatologic and psychologic morbidities if left untreated. In this study, a survey was distributed via Amazon Mechanical Turk to evaluate for out-of-pocket costs associated with over-the-counter (OTC) acne treatment. A total of 515 respondents with acne were included, of whom 84% used OTC products, spending on average $121.99 ± $115.69 in the past year. Additionally, on average, Black respondents spent more on OTC products than those of other races, and there was a positive correlation between income and expenditure on OTC products. Consistent with the literature, we found that many patients self-treat with multiple OTC products and out-of-pocket costs are significant.

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