Feedback on Retin-A Side Effects and Usage, page 64

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: Skin irritation
Date: 3/20/2010
I used Retin A Micro 4% on the night of February 13th 2010. I only used it that one night because my skin can’t handle it. Today is March 20th and I’m still feeling skin irritation on my forhead when I go outside. It looks as though my skin is thinning more and more each day.

AskDocWeb: Don’t be surprised if it takes 2 or 3 weeks to heal, especially if you used too much on that first application. By the way, if you look closely at the label, that is most likely point four percent, not four percent.

Subj: Crows feet and wrinkles?
Date: 3/21/2010
I want to get rid of crows feet and the wrinkles around and under my eyes. Can I use Retin-A around my eyes? Or is it just for your cheeks and forehead, and I have to use eye creams?

AskDocWeb: Sorry Sharon, the instructions say to keep it away from the eyes.

Subj: Hypopigmentation
Date: 3/21/2010
I am African-American and have been using RetinA nightly for over 18 years. My normal skin tone is medium complexion. Problem is I now have hypopigmentation!! I want to stop using it…in hopes that my normal pigmentation will return. BUT, I want to know how long would it take to reverse the problem? And, after reversed, what amount of use if any (twice a week for ex) would maintain the collagen production but prevent the hypopigmentation? Or, would I just have to never go back to using it…? Thanks for your help!

AskDocWeb: It sounds like you need expert advice. Please have your skin type and condition evaluated by a dermatologist. They will be able to tell you exactly what you can do for the pigmentation problem and if you will be able to continue using Retin-A or not.

Subj: Exfoliate using retin a?
Date: 3/21/2010
I can’t stand the flakes it leaves behind. it makes my makeup look bad and I don’t (obviously) like the look. How can I exfoliate using retin a?

AskDocWeb: One of the possible side effects of using Retin-A is flaky skin. This usually goes away as your face adjusts to the medication. Retin-A stimulates the turnover of skin cells, which in turn causes surface exfoliation. Just follow the instructions.

Subj: Seborrheic Keratosis
Date: 3/23/2010
I have Seborrheic Keratosis and my doctor prescribed RetinA cream (0.025%). I have been using it for a week, every other day. Reading the indications, I found that this is for acne…I wonder why my doctor prescribe this. Should I still be using it? Can I use it and still wearing make up?

AskDocWeb: According to the Mayo Clinic, Seborrheic Keratosis are normally painless and require no treatment because typically they don’t become cancerous, although they can look like skin cancer. Your doctor has several options to remove these growths; freezing with liquid nitrogen (cryosurgery), scraping the skin’s surface with a special instrument (curettage), burning with an electric current (electrocautery), or laser.
Insurance Hint: If you want your insurance company or Medicare to pay for the removal of these growths they require a medical reason for doing so, cosmetic reasons are typically not covered. Medical reasons for treating seborrheic keratosis include intense itching, pain, inflammation, bleeding and/or infection.

Subj: Differen
Date: 3/26/2010
Is the main ingredients in Retin A and differen the same? retinol vitamin a derivitive? does one have more retinol than the other?

AskDocWeb: Although they are both used in the treatment of acne vulgaris, those are two different products.

Subj: Differen
Date: 3/26/2010
Is the main ingredient in “Differen” tretinoin?

AskDocWeb: No, there is no tretinoin in Differen. The ingredients in Differin are adapalene 0.3% in a topical gel consisting of carbomer 940, edetate disodium, methylparaben, poloxamer 124, propylene glycol, purified water, and sodium hydroxide. Some formulas may contain hydrochloric acid for pH adjustment. The chemical name of adapalene is 6-[3-(1-adamantyl)-4-methoxyphenyl]-2-naphthoic acid.

Subj: Help for sagging neck and jaws?
Date: 3/27/2010
i am just starting to use retin A but I can not find out if it is good to put on your neck not for wrinkles but will it help for sagging neck and jaws.


AskDocWeb: Retin-A may help the texture of your skin but it is not really intended for loose or sagging skin. That would be an off-label use, one that isn’t listed or approved of by the manufacturer. However, some women say it helps but they have to use less in those areas because the skin is so sensitive. Others have reported that they can’t tolerate it under the chin or on the neck. There are also a few horror stories from those who used it on their neck.

Subj: Tight skin and wrinkles
Date: 3/30/2010
hi, i´ve been using retin-a for two weeks now @ .025 and i feel mi skin is very tight and my wrinkles look deeper and more severe, there is general redness and it looks and feels very dry no matter what moisturizer i use, i´ve started using baby oil since it´s the only product that does not hurt my skin when applied. my doctor is on holidays and i do not know if this is normal or if i should stop using it for a while. thank you

AskDocWeb: According to the product information for Retin-A, “During the early weeks of acne therapy, a worsening of the condition may occur due to the action of Retin-A on deep, previously unseen areas of inflammation. This is not a reason to discontinue therapy, but do notify your doctor if it occurs.” The instructions also note that “More than 6 or 7 weeks of treatment may be needed before consistent beneficial effects appear.”

Subj: Age spots
Date: 4/1/2010
I have been using Retin-A ‘Tretinoin’ for a few months and now have age spots all over my skin where I applyed it.


Subj: Retin-A results
Date: 4/8/2010
I was prescribed Retin-A by my dermatologist about 2 years ago for my acne, enlarged pores with sebum all over my face, and blotchy spots. It was not bad enough to be prescribed with accutane. I started using the .025 for couple of months, then went up to .50 I saw the results within the first couple of months, the bumpiness of my acne and some scarring started to fade, and my skin started getting clearer. The only side effects were dry skin, and a little bit of peeling around my chin and the tip of my nose. However, moisturizer helped. I stopped using Retin-A as frequently as I used it, but I still use it at least twice a week overnight.


Subj: Stretch marks
Date: 4/9/2010
Today my dermatologist prescribed me Retin-A micro gel for my stretch marks. They were a slight red color before but now they seem to be dark red/dark purple. I just gave birth two months ago in February. I weighed 109 lbs during pregnancy and now I’m 94 lbs. He said my marks are still mild so he gave it to me in 0.04%… will this help reduce the appearance, along with healthy diet and losing weight?


AskDocWeb: As long as you are not breastfeeding, Retin-A seems to work best for those whose stretch marks are less than a year old, however, many women also may experience side effects like dryness, redness, scaling, itching, and burning. It seems to reduce the stretch marks but not remove them.

Trilastin is another product that works to reduce appearance of stretch marks. The biggest difference is in how completely each product is able get rid of the stretch marks. For many women using the Trilastin formula, the stretch marks were not only reduced, but appeared to disappear from skin completely.

Subj: I was amazed, at first
Date: 4/10/2010
I am currently using Retin-A in the form of the micro gel % .04. I’m 28 years old and had oily but fairly regular skin. Always had blackheads and the usually a cystic zit every month or so, or some congested hair follicle on my chin. I also had heard that Retin-A would help smooth wrinkles. I don’t think I had any wrinkles yet but I figured it might keep them at bay… I dunno. I was also really hoping though that it might help even out the slight roughness that had happened on my cheeks over the years, just thick congested pores. At first, within the first week, my skin started getting smoother and prettier. I was amazed by how soft it felt and how clear it was, like I was a teen again. Aaaan then things got ugly. Now I’m wondering if I wouldn’t be better off leaving my poor skin alone. It is very red and painful/itchy. It looks as if I’ve had a bad sunburn, and it feels hard and rough. The texture is like an elephant and I look years older because there are always dry creases in the texture of my skin. I feel so ugly. I look great for a woman in her 40’s but I’m not even 30 yet. I put plain oil and grease on my face all day so that it doesn’t hurt too much. Now I’m just wondering if I leave it alone will it stop hurting so much and go back the way it was? I feel bad for even messing with my skin just to get rid of some zits and in the hopes of keeping age at bay a little. I wash my face with oil which gives me a chance to scrub off some of the flakes. But the oil even soaks in so fast that my skin is painful and dry after cleaning and I have to moisturize more just to be able to move my mouth. I would say this is about week three for me. I have not had that much breakout. At the moment I have one blemish on my forehead and that is it. Just painful red inflammation, hardened skin, and massive flaking. I wonder if I am using too much when I apply. As of this weekend I think I’m going to go down to every other night for one week and see if it is better for me that way.


Subj: Retin-A and pregnancy
Date: 4/10/2010
I have used retin A for probably 10 years and it has worked great for me to prevent acne and reduce wrinkles. But I was unaware it should not be used during pregnancy. I am now about 3 weeks pregnant and just stopped using it. I am super scared I may have caused the baby birth defects. Do you know how likely that is, especially since I have used it for so many years previously?? Thank you for your help.


AskDocWeb: Your previous use of Retin-A, in the years before you became pregnant, has no effect on pregnancy. Since you are only 3 weeks into the pregnancy the chance of any problem occurring is very small but talk to your doctor about this, if only for your peace of mind.

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