Accutane is a drug that is mainly used to treat severe acne, which is a retinoid (it is associated with vitamin A and is contained in small amounts in the body). The main active substance is Isotretinoin, which is a synthetic stereoisomer of polytransretinoic acid (tretinoin). Its isomer, tretinoin, is also a cure for acne.
|Drug Name||Generic Accutane||Generic Accutane|
|Doses||10mg, 20mg, 30mg||5mg, 10mg, 20mg|
In most cases, it contributes to the complete inhibition of excessive sebum production, normalizes the regenerative functions of the skin, thereby curing acne and seborrhea. Isotretinoin accumulates when taken orally; when a certain cumulative dose is set, it changes the composition of sebum, which leads to a complete cure for acne.
The mechanism of action of isotretinoin in acne
The mechanism of action of isotretinoin is not well understood, but it is known that it strongly suppresses the activity of the sebaceous glands. It suppresses both the activity of sebocytes (these are cells in the sebaceous glands that secrete fat secret) and their proliferation, i.e. reproduction. Accordingly, as a result of the course use of isotretinoin, both the secretion of sebum (sebaceous gland secretion) decreases, and the sebaceous glands decrease in size
Studies have shown that after the end of the course of treatment with isotretinoin in most patients, the usual activity of the sebaceous glands returns only after 2-4 months, but in some patients this effect can be expressed even up to 1 year. In addition, isotretinoin contributes to an indirect reduction in the number of P.acnes bacteria, normalizes the processes of follicular keratinization, and also has anti-inflammatory activity.
The latter, however, requires clarification, because at the first stage of drug therapy with Accutane, on the contrary, acne may worsen. This effect usually lasts up to 2 weeks and its appearance does not require discontinuation of the drug. To reduce the symptoms of acne exacerbation at the first stage of treatment, reduced dosages of isotretinoin are usually used.
When can I not take Accutane?
- If you are pregnant or think that you are pregnant
- If you are breastfeeding
- If you have liver failure
- If you take large doses of vitamin A
- If at the same time you are taking antibiotics from the tetracycline group
- If you have a pronounced elevated lipid level in your blood
- If you are allergic to isotretinoin or to one of the components of the drug
How safe is Accutane in general?
Accutane can be considered a safe drug. All its side effects are predictable and can be easily and effectively eliminated, while most of the side effects depend on the dose. As a rule, when prescribing the recommended doses, the benefit obtained from the use of Accutane in any group of patients, taking into account the severity of the disease, significantly exceeds the possible risk.
The appearance of side effects depends on the dosage. They are eliminated after adjusting the dose or stop taking the drug. Sometimes unpleasant symptoms remain even after therapy.
Here is the list of possible side effects:
- Nausea and vomiting;
- Fear of light;
- Visual disturbances;
- Hearing loss;
- Frequent loose stools;
- Inflammation of the pancreas;
- Bleeding from the mucous membranes of the nose;
- A decrease in the concentration of hemoglobin;
- Reduction of red bodies, white blood cells, neutrophil granulocytes in the blood;
- Bronchospastic syndrome (usually in people with bronchial asthma);
- Pain in the muscles, inflammation in the joints, ligaments;
- Inflammation and dystrophy of tendon tissues;
- Increased growth of bone tissue in excess form;
- Urticaria, itching;
- Hyperhidrosis – severe sweating;
- Hair loss;
- Pathological changes in the nail plates;
- Inflammation of the nail roller;
- Excessive hair growth in women, inherent in men;
- Special sensitivity of the skin and mucous membranes to ultraviolet radiation, the sun;
- Dryness of the skin and mucous membranes;
- Various allergic reactions.
Scientific studies have shown that most often after using Roaccutane, facial dermatitis and cheilitis appear – an inflammatory process that affects the skin, mucous membrane, and red border of the lips.
What dietary recommendations should be followed against the background of taking Isotretinoin?
At the time of treatment with Isotretinoin, it is necessary to exclude alcohol, reduce fat intake (although for better digestibility of the drug, it should be taken with a small amount of fat-containing food), limit foods rich in vitamin A (carrots, red fish, liver, eggs, etc.), exclude multivitamins and dietary supplements.