Tazarotene versus tretinoin or adapalene in the treatment of acne vulgaris

J Am Acad Dermatol. 2000 Aug;43(2 Pt 3):S51-4. doi: 10.1067/mjd.2000.108322.


The efficacy and tolerability of tazarotene 0.1% gel in the treatment of acne vulgaris have been compared with those of tretinoin 0.025% gel and adapalene 0.1% gel in multicenter, double-blind, randomized, parallel-group trials. Preliminary results from the tazarotene versus tretinoin trial suggest that once-daily tazarotene is more efficacious than once-daily tretinoin in reducing the numbers of papules and open comedones, and achieves a more rapid reduction in pustules. Both drugs appear to be equally efficacious against closed comedones. Preliminary results from the tazarotene versus adapalene trial suggest that, when tazarotene is applied only half as frequently as adapalene (every other day versus every day), the two drugs achieve comparable reductions in noninflammatory and inflammatory lesion counts. The results from these studies, and a separate split-face tolerability study, suggest that the tolerability of tazarotene gel is clinically comparable to that of tretinoin 0.025% gel, tretinoin 0.1% gel microsphere, and adapalene 0.1% gel.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acne Vulgaris / drug therapy*
  • Adapalene
  • Administration, Topical
  • Dermatologic Agents / adverse effects
  • Dermatologic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Gels
  • Keratolytic Agents / adverse effects
  • Keratolytic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic
  • Naphthalenes / adverse effects
  • Naphthalenes / therapeutic use*
  • Nicotinic Acids / adverse effects
  • Nicotinic Acids / therapeutic use*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Tretinoin / adverse effects
  • Tretinoin / therapeutic use*


  • Dermatologic Agents
  • Gels
  • Keratolytic Agents
  • Naphthalenes
  • Nicotinic Acids
  • Adapalene
  • Tretinoin
  • tazarotene