Pimples Over Back

Around 60 to 65% of patients coming with pimples have them on their back. This is a common place to get pimples, especially in young males.

Common places where pimples occur include the ones where more oil secreting glands are present. These include the face, shoulders, back and buttocks. Face pimples are very common in females.

These areas are characteristically more oil or sebum producing. You may see comedones or small pimples there to begin with. If not treated, larger pimples get formed, which may become painful.

You never get pimples over  your palm or sole, where sweat glands are present, but oil secreting glands are very few.

How and Why You Get Pimples?

Our skin has plenty of oil secreting glands in its deeper layers. When oil secretion is excessive, the duct draining this oil over the skin surface gets blocked.

Blockage may also occur due to accumulated dead cells, tissue debris, dirt lying over the skin.

The blocked gland, enable to drain oil over the surface, keeps swelling to form a pimple.

Pimples often get infected when we scratch them or when they suffer some kind of friction during walking or any other activity.

Factors or Conditions That Predispose to Pimple Formation

    Infrequent bathing and scrubbing of the bath may lead  to collection of dirt and dead cells there. This may form a plug which may block the duct of an oil gland and lead to pimple formation.
    Wearing non absorbent fabric over the skin, which is not able to absorb excess of oil.
    Excessive sweating, as during physical exercises, running or labor.
    Any skin problem where there is excessive skin flaking (commonly referred to as dandruff).
    Excess oil secretions, as during teenage and early adulthood. Some medical conditions may also cause oily secretions. These are called seborrhea.
    Polycystic ovarian disease or hirsutism in females. Both these conditions increase the level of testosterone (male hormone) in the female body. This hormone promotes pimple formation.

Managing Pimples

Eruption of pimples can be prevented or at least controlled.  Follow these steps to keep or back pimple free:

Regular bathing with gentle scrubbing of your back with a loofah or an abrasive scrub. This would wash off any oil, dirt or dead cells from over the skin.

Always moisturize your back skin after bathing with a moisturizer/emollient. This is to avoid development of dryness there, which may give rise to more of dry skin flakes.

Wear cotton fabrics over your back. This fabric is hypoallergenic and has the capability to absorb excess of oil or sweat.


If you get pimples on your back, medical treatment is essential. The earlier you begin with your treatment, the better it  is. This would ensure a control over pimple formation, and you’ll have to deal with lesser of pimples.

Apply a topical ointment containing a combination of clindamycin and either benzoyl peroxide or retinoic acid derivative over your pimples.

Alternatively, topical ointment containing erythromycin and 1% zinc acetate lotion may be used.

Assure that you bathe yourself daily with gentle scrubbing, taking care not to injure your pimples. A gentle soap may be used. You may use a medicated soap, containing salicylic acid or benzoly peroxide, once in 15 to 20 days. Then, always put a good skin moisturizer over your  back to prevent dryness.

Acne Scars Over the Back

Most acne do not leave scars. They come and disappear after some time on their own, or with treatment.

All you need to do to prevent scar formation is avoid scratching or squeezing the pimples. The more you fiddle with them, chances of acne formation are more.

Once you get the scars, leave them and wait if they fade away with time. if not, chemical peeling of the skin or laser treatment is required

Then apply the above mentioned medication, thrice daily for a week.

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