Which medications in the drug class Retinoid-like Agents are used in the treatment of Keratosis Pilaris?

Updated: Oct 15, 2020
  • Author: Ally N Alai, MD, FAAD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Retinoid-like Agents

Retinoic acid decreases cohesiveness of follicular epithelial cells, stimulates mitotic activity, and increases turnover of follicular epithelial cells.

Tretinoin topical (Retin-A, Avita, Retin A Micro)

Tretinoin inhibits microcomedo formation and eliminates the lesions present. It makes keratinocytes in sebaceous follicles less adherent and easier to remove. Tretinoin topical is available as 0.025%, 0.05%, and 0.1% creams and 0.01%, 0.025%, 0.04%, and 0.1% gels.

Tazarotene (Tazorac)

This receptor-selective retinoid is a synthetic retinoid prodrug that is rapidly converted into tazarotenic acid. Because use of tretinoin often is hampered by its irritancy, this product may be advantageous. It is available as 0.05% and 0.1% cream or gel. Tazarotene is a retinoid prodrug whose active metabolite modulates differentiation and proliferation of epithelial tissue; it may also have anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory properties.

Adapalene (Differin)

Adapalene modulates cellular differentiation, inflammation, and keratinization. It may be tolerated by individuals who cannot tolerate tretinoin creams. A therapeutic response can be expected following 8-12 weeks of therapy. It is available as 0.1% gel or solution or 0.3% gel.

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