Feedback on Retin-A Side Effects and Usage, page 12

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: Acne scars
Date: 3/27/2006
When can I see results for my acne scars?


AskDocWeb: It is not possible to say for sure because everyone is different and there is such a wide range of damage with acne scarring however, it has helped others.

Subj: Product for age spots?
Date: 3/28/2006
What will work as well as Retin-A on my arms to reduce the appearance of age spots? Retin-A works very well on my arms for those spots but it’s too costly to apply to such a large area.


AskDocWeb: We agree about the expense. And yes, there are bleaching products available for age spots. Look for something that has at least 2% Hydroquinone in it. Others have reported success with Palmer’s Fade Cream, available over-the-counter. A stronger formula (more than 2%) is available but you’ll need a prescription for that.

Subj: Laugh lines
Date: 3/30/2006
For laugh lines (someone asked about this), you can get restylane…I have them and got it and it made a difference. The injections hurt a bit though…but results worth it. Need to keep redoing it every 6 months.


Subj: Starting Retin-A again?
Date: 3/31/2006
I was using retin-A for 6 weeks before stopping usage because I got extractions done and then microderm abrasion shortly after. Now it’s been about 3 weeks since I last used retin-A. If I start using retin-a again, will I have to go through the side effects again and will the 6 weeks I used retin-A for be in vain? OR will the effects be more cumulative with my skin needing no extra time to adjust to it?


AskDocWeb: Everyone’s skin is different and how their skin responds to Retin-a is different. In general, you will likely go through the stages again, but with reduced effects and they are not likely to last as long as it was when you first starting using it.

Subj: Retin A online
Date: 4/2/2006
I have been using Retin A 1% for about a week now. I have noticed no difference but I know that it really doesn’t start to take affect for about two to three weeks. My insurance doesn’t really cover for the prescription and I’m paying $100. I saw an advertisement for Retin A .5% on the internet for $30.00. Is this the same as my prescribed Retin A? Should I take a risk and order it online or should I stick with my prescription?


AskDocWeb: When it comes to your health, we always want to error on the side of safety, there is no way of knowing if it is junk or not.

Subj: Animal testing
Date: 4/2/2006
Hi, I am 26 years old and considering using Retin A as a preventative measure against fine lines…Can you tell me if the laboratories use animals to test the retin A cream on and if so can you recommend and alternative that is animal friendly? Lastly can you tell me if it is advisable to apply these creams around the area of your eyes you are noticing fine lines or is it only recommended to be applied away from the eye area? Thanks,

AskDocWeb: This product was topically applied to rodents to test for any possible affect on fertility, none was found. The manufacturer says that it should be kept away from the eyes, it can cause severe irritation.

Subj: Redness and peeling
Date: 4/2/2006
Ok, well I used retin a micro 0.04 % for 9 days then stopped for 5 days because it got really red and it looked like I got beat up. It looked really swollen. I think I might have been using too much. It said to use a pea size amount but I used a little more to cover my whole face. Then I started to use it again after the swelling went down but the right amount for about 10 days now and I stopped for one or 2 days because of the peeling. It’s so embarrassing because it looks like a sunburn on your face. The worst part for me is the peeling…I don’t mind the redness too much. I try to use foundation and it makes the peeling look 100 percent worse. And I used a little sunblock when I went outside cuz I figured it would get worse if I didn’t and OMG it burned so bad… So anyway I was wondering should I keep using this and just see what happens?


AskDocWeb: This is one of those situations where using more is not better, using less gives better results. The redness and peeling of your skin is a phase that will stop with continued use.

Date: 4/4/2006
What is the difference between Retin-A and Retin-A Micro?


AskDocWeb: Retin-A is short for Retin-A Micro, same thing.

Subj: Using a moisturizer with Retina A?
Date: 4/7/2006
I am still battling acne in my mid-30’s and have been on Minocycline and Clindamycin for about 3 months. The breakouts have gradually subsided and have been using Retin A (Tretinoin) for two weeks now. My dermatologist said that it’s okay to use moisturizer before or after Retina A as long as I wait for at least 20 minutes. However, the aesthetician told me that I should use the Retina A (.025%) alone because the moisturizer will lessen its effectiveness. I live in a very dry climate and know for certain that my face will suffer severe dryness. Will the moisturizer reduce the effectiveness of Retina A (Tretinoin) cream? Thanks.


AskDocWeb: Yes, a moisturizer will inhibit the effectiveness of retin-a if used too close together. One solution is to allow more time between the application of the two products.

Subj: Too much Vitamin A?
Date: 4/7/2006
I’m currently taking the Retin A cream for my acne along with herbal capsules called “Dermacleanse” from a Canadian company called Zenmed. I also started to take some zinc supplements twice a day as I have read that they can be beneficial to acne. Because zinc is an A vitamin, would I consuming too much vitamin A as I’m applying it to my skin with the retin A cream, or is it ok for me to continue taking the Zinc tablets?


AskDocWeb: Sorry Hayley, someone has mislead you about Zinc. It is not a vitamin of any kind, Zinc is a mineral. If you are taking any prescription medication, be sure to check the ingredient list of any herbal remedy that you try. Some herbs interact with medication.

Subj: Retin a micro during pregnancy?
Date: 4/10/2006
I have been using retin a micro for over 2 months now and it is awesome. I used Differin for almost 10 years and it worked great but the past year it just wasn’t doing the trick. Retin totally cleared up my skin with no side effects (some peeling early on but it went away). My question is that my husband and I are trying to have a baby and I want to know at what point should I stop using retin a micro if at all? Is it safe to use during pregnancy? If not should I stop using it well before getting pregnant to remove it from my system? Thanks!


AskDocWeb: Since Retin a micro is in pregnancy category C you should talk this over with your doctor. Drugs in category C have not been tested in pregnant women however, the likelihood of harm is small enough to justify taking them if it is essential to your health.

Subj: Face is worse than before
Date: 4/12/2006
I have been using retin A for 4 weeks now and my face has more acne than before, is this common? Also, I noticed that my face is red and a completely different color than my neck. I am using .05% once a day, should I cut back to every other day? Is it possible for retin A to cause acne in people who don’t suffer from severe acne?


AskDocWeb: Using it every other day may be a good idea to give your skin a chance to get used to it. Give it a couple more weeks to see if the redness goes away.

Subj: Totally broke out
Date: 4/18/2006
My daughter has been using retin A since August of last year, she puts it on at night with a little bit of oil free face moisturizer and uses Benzacline in the morning. Her face looked great with maybe 1 or 2 blemishes here and there, then with in the last month she has totally broke out. Her face is peeling so bad, her face feels like it is burning all the time, we haven’t changed anything why would it start doing all of that now? I took her back to the dermatologist and he upped the % on the Retin-A, would that be normal if her faces is already red, peeling and burning. She’s afraid to try the new prescription, also she has a very pale complexion and now that it’s almost summer here in Florida, she is very prone to sun burns. What face sunscreen is best for oily skin?


AskDocWeb: The protection number of the sunscreen is more important than the brand, buy the highest number you can find. We suggest using a product with Zinc oxide (10%) and Titanium Dioxide (5%a) but avoid relying on Avobenzone. It doesn’t last long enough to be worthwhile.

Subj: Used too much Retin A Micro
Date: 4/22/2006
Hey, I have been using Retin A Micro for a year now and I have seen a dramatic improvement in my acne. But, my cheeks have started to get very red. I was using too much Retin A Micro at night maybe 4 pea sizes. My doctor told me that I’m using too much and know I only use a pea size of retin A for my entire face. But one question, My face is still a little red. Do you know how long until my face would clear up from the redness???? thanks


AskDocWeb: No, everyone’s time frame is different for this type of healing process but it will typically take a few days. If not, then you might try reducing use to every other day for awhile to give your skin a rest.

Subj: Any suggestions?
Date: 4/26/2006
I have been using Retin A on my face for 3 weeks. I am utilizing it a little for acne but primarily to reduce wrinkles and pores. I actually don’t mind the peeling of my skin. I am hoping it peels enough that I won’t need a chemical peel. My face remains dry and flakey, not to mention my wrinkles and pores have gotten worse. I have tried so many products (Principal Secrets, Susan Lucci, Proactiv, Paula’s Choice, Murad, Skin Medica TNS). It seems the more stuff I put on my face the worse it gets. I take a multivitamin with CoQ10, along with a wrinkle reducer (green tea, alpha lipoic acid & DMAE). I know genetics is an issue and just the fact of becoming a leather bag is inevitable but are there any other suggestions for my dilemma?


AskDocWeb: Your experience with Retin A seems to be pretty common. Many go through a period where the skin is worse before it gets better. During the day you might use an emollient on your face to help with the dryness and flakiness. Makeup can fill in the pores to make them less noticeable.

Please note that in some situations there are health concerns with using Green Tea.

Subj: Very oily skin with acne
Date: 4/26/2006
I have used Retin-A a couple years back for my acne and it was great and I want to use again. But now my skin is very, very oily and full of acne. Could you please suggest me any face wash or any soap, which could help my skin to wash away the oil off my skin. Regards,


AskDocWeb: Rather than using soap on your face, you might try using an over the counter facial cleanser instead. The retin-A should take care of the oil in your skin because it begins with a shedding process, which will dry the skin.

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