General Info:Retin-A (tretinoin gel 0.1%) is proven skin care medication to reduce the severity of acne vulgaris in effected patients.
Seen most commonly in adolescents, but also seen in older patients as well, true acne involves the formation of comedones (large deep seeded pus filled pimples) that resolve slowly leaving behind a deep scar.
Retin-A can significantly reduce the severity of these lesions.
What Is It Used For?
This medication is used in the treatment of acne. It reduces the formation of pimples and promotes quick healing of pimples that do develop, especially in the case of blackheads, pimples and papules. Rentin-A is also used to treat aged, sun-damaged skin. If used over a period of years, it will continue to reverse aging of the skin and can continue improving the skin's appearance even ten years after starting treatment. A study in the Archives of Dermatology shows that 0.1% Retin-A significantly improves the appearance of early stretch marks. It works best on stretch marks that are new or enlarging.
How Is It Used?
Apply a thin layer to affected area once a day at bedtime. Use a gauze pad or cotton swab to apply the liquid. Wash your hands immediately after use. Using this medication more frequently or in excessive amounts does not improve the results, but may increase side effects. Avoid applying near the eyes, mouth, or open cuts since this medication can irritate sensitive skin. Acne may appear to worsen when the medication is first used; continue therapy. It may take three to six weeks before the full benefits of this medication are seen. Use mild soap when washing your face. Do not wash face excessively. Abrasive soaps, cleansers, medicated creams or lotions can increase skin irritation. Consult your doctor or pharmacist about their use. Use other acne preparations with caution while using this medication. In the event of exceptional exposure (such as a day at the lake), avoid (if possible) applying the cream the day prior to the day of exposure to the sun as well as the day after exposure. Keep it away from the eyes, mouth and nose. Should contact occur, rinse the affected area carefully with plenty of water.
Are There Possible Side Effects?
Due to the possibility of irritation, it is advisable to begin treatment on a small area of skin. Exposure to the sun or to ultraviolet rays causes additional irritation. During treatment, such exposure should be avoided as much as possible or a sun block should be used. During the first weeks of treatment there may be an apparent worsening of the problem. Such a reaction is perfectly normal because small cysts deep within the skin are being eliminated at an accelerated rate. This medication can increase sensitivity wind and cold. Avoid prolonged exposure to the sun and sunlamps. Wear protective clothing and use an effective sunscreen. If any ingredient should cause hypersensitivity, discontinue use.
Is It Safe?
Retin-A is very safe when used as directed. Several studies show Retin-A is safe to use during pregnancy, however you should only use Retin-A during pregnancy if this is OK with your obstetrician. Do not smoke while applying Retin-A, the gel form is flammable.
What About Interactions With Other Drugs?
This product should be used with caution due to the possible interaction of Retin-A with related external medication, abrasive soaps, drying cosmetics and products with high alcohol content. Care should also be taken regarding the application of preparations containing sulphur, resorcinol or salicylic acid.
What If I Miss A Dose?
If you miss a dose, use it as soon as remembered; do not use if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not "double-up" the dose to catch up.
How Should It Be Stored?
Store at room temperature away from sunlight. Keep this and all medications out of the reach of children.
Anything Else I Should Know?
If you have been previously treated with keratolytic preparations or exfoliants, you should wait until any skin rash clears up before beginning even low strength treatment. Studies of the effect of this product on pregnant women are incomplete. For this reason, it should only be applied when absolutely necessary and always under a doctor's supervision. The effectiveness of Retin-A is almost always accompanied by skin irritation. In the treatment of acne, this phenomenon is directly related to the effectiveness of the product and disappears once applications are more spaced out. Cosmetics may be used, but clean skin thoroughly before applying the medication.
The above information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist, or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that the use of the product is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before taking the product.