acitretin (Soriatane)

Pharmacy Author:
Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

GENERIC NAME: acitretin

BRAND NAME: Soriatane



USES: Acitretin is used for treating severe psoriasis in adults. Acitretin should be prescribed only by doctors who have experience in the systemic use of retinoids because it has serious side effects.


  • Acitretin is harmful to the fetus. It must not be used while pregnant, or by women who intend to be pregnant during therapy or within 3 years following discontinuation of therapy. It should also not be used by women who do not use reliable contraception. Patients must use 2 effective forms of contraception (birth control) simultaneously for at least 1 month prior to starting acitretin therapy, during therapy, and for at least 3 years after stopping treatment.
  • Alcohol increases conversion of acitretin to etretinate (Tegison), which remains in the body much longer and is also harmful to the fetus. Therefore, women should not consume alcohol during treatment with acitretin and for 2 months after stopping therapy.
  • Acitretin may cause liver damage. Acitretin should be discontinued if liver damage is suspected during treatment.


Common side effects include:

Other side effects include:

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/22/2016

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Pill Finder Tool

Need help identifying pills and medications?
Use the pill identifier tool on RxList.

Back to Medications Index

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors