Which medications in the drug class Retinoid-like Agents, Topical are used in the treatment of Acne Conglobata?

Updated: Apr 24, 2019
  • Author: Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

Retinoid-like Agents, Topical

Vitamin A derivatives stimulate cellular retinoid receptors and help normalize keratinocyte differentiation and are comedolytic. In addition, they have anti-inflammatory properties. Oral isotretinoin also reduces sebum production in the skin.

Isotretinoin (Claravis, Amnesteem, Sotret)

Isotretinoin is an oral agent that treats serious dermatologic conditions. Isotretinoin is the synthetic 13-cis isomer of the naturally occurring tretinoin (trans -retinoic acid). Both agents are structurally related to beta-carotene. It decreases sebaceous gland size and sebum production. It may inhibit sebaceous gland differentiation and abnormal keratinization. Effective March 1, 2006, the FDA requires that prescribers of isotretinoin, patients who take isotretinoin, and pharmacists who dispense isotretinoin all must register with the iPLEDGE system.

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

Tretinoin topical is structurally related to vitamin A. It may be helpful for recalcitrant disease, but recurrence is common. Long-term, low-dose therapy may be suitable for selected patients. It may cause skin irritation in some patients. Also, it has been linked to the promotion of angiogenesis; however, it has not demonstrated increased telangiectasias. Tretinoin topical also inhibits microcomedo formation and eliminates lesions. It makes keratinocytes in sebaceous follicles less adherent and easier to remove. It is available as creams and gels.


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