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What is oral isotretinoin?

Oral isotretinoin, which is sold under the trade name of Accutane (if under generics is known as Sotret or Amnesty) is used for severe, scarring acne. With oral isotretinoin scars became a much less frequently observed occurrence.

Isotretinoin is considered by dermatologists as an appropriate treatment for people who have severe nodular acne (i.e. scattered nodules mostly occurred on the face, chest and/or back) or moderate or severe acne that has not responded to oral antibiotics and topical treatment, i.e. for moderate to severe acne that scars physically and psychologically, inflammatory acne that does not respond to conventional therapy and chronic acne that keeps recurring after any given treatment.

However, because of its potential for very serious side effects, this acne treatment is not without its perils and is not for everyone for acne clear and acne care purpose.

Isotretinoin is an oral retinoid which is belong to the vitamin A family of compounds. Hence, many of the side effects that we see from isotretinoin are similar to the effects that we see from taking toxic doses of vitamin A.

Because of the need for this very important drug to continue to be available for the treatment of acne despite its potentially side effects, program and guidelines have been devised to increase the awareness of the risks of oral isotretinoin. For example, one of the requirement is that patients who are taking oral isotretinoin need to enter into a formal registry, in addition to a written consent to be given.

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