isotretinoin, Sotret, Claravis, Amnesteem, (Accutane is no longer available)

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GENERIC NAME: isotretinoin

BRAND NAME: Sotret, Claravis, Amnesteem (Note: Accutane is no longer available)

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Isotretinoin is an oral drug used for the treatment and prevention of severe acne. Acne is caused by inflammation of the skin. It primarily affects teenagers, but it also affects adults. Severe acne causes permanent scarring of the skin. The inflammation is caused in part by an increased secretion of sebum (oily substance) from glands in the skin (sebaceous glands). The sebum provokes inflammation, and the inflammation resolves (heals) with the formation of a scar (keratinization). The exact mechanism of action of isotretinoin is not known; however, it may reduce acne by reducing the secretion of sebum. If less sebum is secreted it is likely that there will be less inflammation and keratinization. The Food and Drug Administration approved isotretinoin in May 1982.

PRESCRIPTION: yes

GENERIC AVAILABLE: yes

PREPARATIONS: capsules: 10, 20, 30 & 40 mg

STORAGE: Store at room temperature 15-30 C (59-86 F) and protect from light

PRESCRIBED FOR: Isotretinoin is used to treat severe acne that is resistant to more conservative treatments such as creams, drying agents, and topical or oral antibiotics. Complete remission or prolonged improvement is seen in many patients after one course of 15 to 20 weeks of isotretinoin. Because of its serious side effects, isotretinoin should be used only for severe resistant acne.




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