Feedback on Retin-A Side Effects and Usage, page 45

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: 2% salicylic acid toner
Date: 10/15/2008
I have been using retin a for about 2 weeks now. Initially it did seem quite drying and made my face feel a little tight, but I have very oily resilliant skin and it wasn’t too irritating. I did peel I bit but not the dry large flake type of peeling. My question is this I use a 2% salicylic acid toner as I said I have very oily skin. I hope this is ok as I haven’t noticed any adverse effects yet.


AskDocWeb: The directions say to check with your doctor before using Salicylic Acid with Retin-A. If you do have a problem it could show up as skin irritation or excessive peeling.

Subj: More wrinkles then when I started
Date: 10/15/2008
I have been using Tretinoin .05% cream (pea size amt) for over a year. I have been using it daily for 6m. I have not seen a difference. I feel like I have done more damage than good. My face is shriveling (more wrinkles then when I started). I use CervaVe moisturizer (sometimes Olive Oil or Emu Oil) & cleanser. I do still peel occasionally. Seems my skin may not be repairing or getting to that 3rd phase.


AskDocWeb: Since you have been using it for months without getting the results you want, it may be time to consult with a dermatologist for some expert instruction designed specifically for your skin type. Be sure to tell the dermatologist what products you are currently using.

Subj: My concern
Date: 10/24/2008
I have been using retino – A .05% for a month now (on and off). It has removed a lot of brown spots from my face and is also reducing the pore size. My concern was my pox spots and pits which I had on my face. My dermatologist suggested me retino – A. It has definately changed my skin texture, but I cant find any change on pox spots, I have a few scars (pits) here and there on my face due to chicken pox and pimples. I am 28 years old and really dream of having a clear skin, I just wanted to know that if retino – A exfoliate the skin layer by layer then why is it not showing any effect on spots, or should I wait more and see if there is any change, I am getting all normal indications of peeling etc, or should I go for a higher dose or should I loose hopes with retino -a regarding any effect on my spots. Kindly suggest. Thanxs,


AskDocWeb: You may want to give it more time. The directions say that more than 7 weeks of treatment may be needed before consistent beneficial effects appear.

Subj: Face is red, hot, and dry
Date: 10/26/2008
I’m 14 and I recently started seeing a dermatologist. At first I was put on Duac, which proved not to be strong enough. When I went back I was put on Benzaclin and doxycline 50MG (I think that’s what it is). I just went back less than a week ago and it was decided that she would up the dose of doxycline to 100MG, keep me on the Benzaclin for mornings, and then Retin-A Micro for night. Before my last visit my face was never irritated at all, and suddenly my face is burning for at least 20 minutes after I put anything on it, and my face is red, hot, and dry all day long. I am not sure if it is the mixture of the prescription or not. Another thing that I have considered is the foundation I use. Even after I only wash my face with Cetaphil (which has always been very gentle) is causing my face to burn for a ridiculous amount of time. I just washed my face and it’s tight and hot and burning. I’m sure that there is something wrong. My face may be getting clearer but like I said, I’ve been using it for less than a week.


AskDocWeb: The red, hot, and dry condition of the skin on your face may be the result of just the Retin-A. That is a known stage that the skin goes through in becoming accustomed to the drug. Your skin is likely to become much more sensitive to other products as well as sensitive to sunlight. You may have to make allowances for that sensitivity by using less of those other products while using Retin-A.

Subj: Hair loss?
Date: 10/27/2008
I have heard that too much vitamin A can cause hair loss. When I was using Retin A, I experienced lossing a lot of hair. Once I stopped using Retin A, my hair starting growing back. While I have not read anything to associate this relationship, who can I find out if there is a factual connection?


AskDocWeb: Too much vitamin A (Hypervitaminosis A) can lead to toxic symptoms. There are 4 major adverse effects: birth defects, liver abnormalities, reduced bone mineral density that may result in osteoporosis, and central nervous system disorders. These toxic symptoms may arise after consuming very large amounts of preformed vitamin A over a short period of time. Signs of acute toxicity include nausea, vomiting, headache, dizziness, blurred vision, and problems with muscle coordination. Although you can get too much vitamin by eating large amounts of liver on a regular basis, most cases result from taking excess amounts of the nutrient in supplements. We’ve seen nothing to suggest that toxic levels might result from using Retin-A.

Subj: Results without peeling?
Date: 10/28/2008
I have been using retin-a .04 gel for a month and havent been peeling or dry skin at all. I’m Italian and have oily skin but live in Utah where the weather is dry. Do you only get results if peeling occurs? I’m wondering if I should use a light exfoliant? Thanks in advance.


AskDocWeb: Remember that even common side effects are not experienced by everyone. We would give it 6 or 7 weeks to work before deciding if something new is needed.

Subj: Which is better?
Date: 10/29/2008
Which is better … Retino-A or Benzoil peroxided.


AskDocWeb: Each has its pros and cons. One is a prescription drug and the other is available over-the-counter. You will have to be more specific, better for what purpose?

Subj: Around eyes?
Date: 11/2/2008
A few weeks ago I began using Retin-A micro (tretinoin gel) Microsphere, 0.1%. The dermatologist office said I could use in under and around my eyes. The directions indicated to avoid the eye area. Should I be avoided my eye area?


AskDocWeb: It is important to avoid getting it on mucus membranes. Your dermatologist should be able to show you exactly how close you can safely use Retin-A around your eyes.

Subj: Circles under eyes?
Date: 11/3/2008
I want to know if Retin-A will help with black circles under your eyes?


AskDocWeb: That doesn’t seem likely. You might want to consult with a demonologist to find the cause of those black circles under your eyes.

Subj: Using Retin-A off label
Date: 11/6/2008
Hi, I’m 59 and I have started using Retin-A regularly for wrinkles and sun damage. I had tried a few years ago, but the dryness was too much for me, and it really exacerbated the skin around the eyes (just being near it), where I sometimes have eczema. This time around, I put a combination of vitamin E and olive oil on right over the Retin-A, my skin creams, and then put either shea butter or AquaPhor (petroleum jelly) over that. Sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? But it has helped me overcome the dryness and irritation! After 2 months, my skin has a porcelain look and my pores (quite large) have started to vanish. Not only that, I am totally using it off label by putting it right onto my eye skin, my lips and the backs of my hands. My hand skin was quite wrinkly, but I am very pleased with how may hands look (and I’m pretty fussy). My lips are looking fuller.


Subj: Crease marks and lines
Date: 11/7/2008
I used retin a gel 0.5% FOR ABOUT 9 MONTHS IT was prescribed for me by my doctor for sun damage and smoking lines around my mouth. I found it made the lines more visible as it does not peel deep enough to get rid of them so I stopped using it. These lines radiate from the corner of my mouth and I have crease marks on my chin area. Do you think glycolic acid might have a better effect for this problem as the lines are quite visible and in my opion worse as a result from retin a. You mentioned Renova can you tell me what this product does. Thanks.


AskDocWeb: There is a Renova page here although like Retin-A, that is also derived from vitamin A.

Subj: Sun tan?
Date: 11/9/2008
I’ve been using Retin-a for 2 months now and it has removed the blemishes dramatically, but the concern I have is – what are the long-term effects? Will I be able to sun tan, say after 2 months, without the blemishes reappearing or an uneven tan?

AskDocWeb: The directions say that while using Retin-A, keep exposure to sunlight, including sun lamps, to a minimum. It does not say how long the increased sensitivity to sunlight lasts after it is discontinued.

Subj: Dizziness
Date: 11/9/2008
I wonder, I started using Retinol 3x about a week ago. I have beed having slight feelings of dizziness…almost like vertigo. Is it possible that the Retinol is causing it?

AskDocWeb: Dizziness (vertigo) is not one of the listed side effects of Retin-A.

Subj: Moisturizer
Date: 11/9/2008
Hi, I have been using the retin A .025% and it does dry out my skin a bit. I would like to use a moisturizer (Clinique moisturizing lotion) in conjunction with retin A, and want to know if I should use the moisturizer before applying retin A, or use it after. Thanks for your help.

AskDocWeb: The general consensus from users is to use a moisturizer 20 to 30 minutes after applying Retin-A.

Subj: Trapped white heads
Date: 11/9/2008
Should I use Retin-A for mila (trapped white heads) on the face?

AskDocWeb: Retin-A is a good medication for acne but whiteheads are just clogged pores. Trapped whiteheads are caused by your skin’s inability to self-exfoliate. A 2% strength of salicylic acid is very effective in eliminating them.

Subj: WAY too much
Date: 11/11/2008
I used WAY too much of the cream for a period of 3 days. I put it on immediately after washing my face to boot. I’m waiting to see how long this peeling and burning around my eyes will last. Oh and I got it on my lips and they are like over cooked meat.


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