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About Retin-a

If you've used Retin-A, please help others by adding your feedback. What would you tell your best friend about this product? Please remember that we do not give medical advice. That is for your local health care provider, who is familiar with your medical history.

Subj: Retin a gel experience
Date: 6/9/2007
I have been using retin a gel for three weeks now, my skin grew red crusty bloody blotches that are big hard and crusty (I keep picking them lol) within the first four days and it is only now that that damage is going away and the red hard spots are shrinking and disappearing and a no 1 in the middle of my forehead is scarily reduced thankfully!!!!!. I am 34 and must have had bad damage under the skin...but what is amazing is that my skin actually is healing brilliantly and the skin is exceptional in a way it just had not been for four years due to a very unusual hot summer in the uk four years ago which caused the damage to start with etc. the retin a gel is actually targeting lines as well as restructuring my skins look over all, and my pores are definately diminishing in size! I had none that you could see before 4 years ago and then wow!1 with the damage they were very black and worrying for all that time and not one product I used did anything over that time to help! and I tried decleor dermalogica, gatineau, skin doctors, roc etc etc...and I have used the cream (retin a 0.01%) around and on my eyelids (yes it stung very very much) but now they are healing and tightening in a very comfortable way and they appear to be curving upward very slightly. all in all apart from hot stinging initial pain I feel that retin a works and the effects are not as bad the more you use it, it takes all sorts of us to make comment because we are all different. I would not advocate that anyone use it on the eye lids, I have a strong constitution and could take it for the results it is giving, but could be damaging to other people so be careful with this cream it is serious stuff!.
Susan united kingdom.

Subj: Skin looks amazing!
Date: 6/14/2007
I have been using Retin-A for my acne for about 7 weeks. It's a miracle cream and I wish I had been prescribed it years ago! My skin looks amazing!

Subj: Tight skin
Date: 6/21/2007
I have been using retin A for 5 days now and my skin feels as if it is being shrinked or pulled too tightly. I can't open my mouth wide. I have cracked lip corners, my eyes aren't opening widely and I see burned marks all over my face. When I wash my face, It burns like hell and is extremely sensitive. Please help me, I can't even smile because it hurts...Should I continue?

AskDocWeb: If you aren't using a moisturizer then it sounds like you really need one. If you are using one, you might be applying too much Retin-A at a time. There are a couple of ways others deal with this. One is to use half as much when applying the Retin A and the other is to use it every other day to give the skin a break.

Subj: 27 years of Retin-A
Date: 6/23/2007
I am 47 years old and have been using retin a since my 20's for acne. My skin looks great, much younger than my age and my breakouts are minimal. Are there any problems with someone my age using retin a?

AskDocWeb: Not at all.

Subj: No difference in skin
Date: 6/29/2007
I began using Retin A creme a couple of mos. ago and haven't really noticed any difference in my skin. I am adamant about using SPF 60+ UVA/UVB sunscreens. If I am out in the sun with a hat, sunscreen, long sleeves and sunglasses; will this hurt the benefits I want for anti-aging?

AskDocWeb: No, you are doing everything that you are supposed to do.

Subj: Tanning?
Date: 7/2/2007
Is it safe to use on stretch marks? Is it ok to tan while using retin-a if I wash it off before tanning?

AskDocWeb: Since it makes your skin photosensitive, tanning would be a bad idea. Photosensitive means that your skin would burn easily. Using Retin-A on stretch marks would be an off-label use. It is intended for use just on the face.

Subj: Retin A and sulfa
Date: 7/3/2007
I've been using retin A for a little over 2 months and been seeing improvements in both my acne and skin color. I've been using a prescription drug with sulfa in it in the morning and retin A at night, however I noticed a warning against this on more than one site and I want to know why? My doctor doesn't know that I'm using both drugs at the same time.

AskDocWeb: Sulfonamides (sulfa drugs) are known to have a negative drug interaction with Retin-A. Both Retin A and sulfa drugs can increase your sensitivity to sunlight. The combination can cause serious problems. Do you remember what happens to a Vampire in the sunlight? Of course it wouldn't be that bad but even a minor sunburn might feel like it. Other drugs that have a possible negative drug interaction with Retin-A include tetracycline, diuretics, antibiotics, and chlorpromazine, although these adverse reactions are rare.

Subj: Cleanser?
Date: 7/6/2007
I have been using retina a cream for my acne. It has produced good results. I use it in evening and wash it before going to bed. I was wondering if after washing off the cream with water before going to bed I need to wash it with cleanser or dove soap.

AskDocWeb: Don't use harsh facial cleansers on your face, Dove soap is good all by itself.

Subj: Lack of weight loss?
Date: 7/7/2007
I have used phentermine and bontril. None of these have worked for me. However, phentermine boosted my energy level resulting in longer workout sessions for me. When I stopped taking phentermine (it really messes with my moods) I gained the 7" I lost back in 2wks. I am currently taking bontril but to no luck so far. I also take rentin-a and minocyclin. Could these combinations have anything to do with my lack of weight loss? Thanks,

AskDocWeb: We found no indication that a combination of the two would influence your weight loss efforts. Minocycline is a tetracycline-type antibiotic that kills and stops the growth of bacteria that cause infection.

Subj: Panic attack?
Date: 7/10/2007
Have you ever heard of someone having a panic attack because of Retin-A? I used it for the first time last night and almost immediately the symptoms of a panic attack started. It wasn't a full blown panic attack, but I was very anxious nonetheless. Just a little nervous about this drug and scared to try it again.

AskDocWeb: No we haven't heard that, but it does sound like it in your case. It would be helpful to know if you have had a panic attack before or if this was your first one.

Subj: New tattoos
Date: 7/12/2007
I've just started using Retin-A for facial acne. I was told that all of my skin, not just my face, will be very sun sensitive. I have several tattoos on my body and am wondering if there could be any effect on them even though I am not applying Retin-A to them? Is there any risk for getting new tattoos while using the product?

AskDocWeb: There's no risk (that we know of) related to Retin-A when getting new tattoos.

Subj: Pimples and skin rashes
Date: 7/14/2007
I have pimples and kind of skin rashes. Can I use retin A 0.025% to clear up my skin?

AskDocWeb: Because you have both, you should consult with a dermatologist and let them decide. Your skin may or may not be too sensitive to use Retin-A but it is better to find out for sure.

Subj: 20 years of Retin-A
Date: 7/15/2007
I'm 37 and I've used Retin-A Micro (0.1%) for acne intermittently, for at least 20 years. I seem to have developed a bit of a tolerance for it, my skin does not peel or react as quickly as it did in the past. I do not apply the product to my entire face, because it makes my skin over-sensitive and the peeling is unattractive. However, even after long-term use, it is very effective for "spot treatment" of pimples. I normally "dab" it onto blemishes as they appear (even some larger cystic pimples) and any skin eruptions, and although initially they get very sore, they usually heal VERY fast (3-5 days). I developed "brown spots" two years ago during Accutane treatment. They look like "pregnancy mask" and are matching "thumb-print" marks on my cheekbones, and blotches from my cheekbones down my jawline. I was also taking Depo-provera birth control shots (progesterone shots), and my mother and grandmother developed similar blotches around my age. So the spots could have been caused by any, or a combination of all three of those things. (However, based on the fact that I used Accutane for only four weeks and they appeared at that time, and have neither improved or gone away in two years ... I believe the Accutane was the key factor.) Retin-A has had NO affect on the brown spots, in two years of use. It has also had NO affect on some of my acne scars that appear as brown spots on my neck, middle-cheeks and chin.

My grandmother had an acid peel during a face-lift to eliminate her spots as well as the "smoking wrinkles" around her mouth. The acid peel removed the spots, but also removed all of the pigment from her skin. She must wear make-up daily to have a normal-appearing complexion. My grandmother has a "peaches and cream" complexion, so since my mother and I have medium-dark olive-complexions ... based on her experience of losing ALL of her skin pigment ... we opted for less-severe treatment.

My mother had one very large and very dark "age" spot on her nose that completely cleared with laser treatment by a plastic surgeon. It now matches her skin tone. My spots are much lighter and over a MUCH larger area (the region that a man would have side-burns and "mutton-chops" ... from the cheekbone to the jawbone, to mid-way along my jawline). I recently began monthly facial treatments with a licensed cosmetologist ($75.00 a visit) with light dermabrasion and bleaching, and it appears to be working. However, the spots initially become darker with treatment as the pigment is drawn to the skin surface. My cosmetologist has over 40 years experience and has treated the skin of many older women I've known for years. She says that her client's spots improve with a few monthly dermabrasion and bleaching appointments. However, AFTER treatment ... you MUST stay out of the sun and use sunscreen daily. Sun exposure will cause the spots to reappear.

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