Isotretinoin: Mechanism of Action and Patient Selection

Semin Cutan Med Surg. 2015 Sep;34(5 Suppl):S86-8. doi: 10.12788/j.sder.2015.0163.


Oral isotretinoin is a highly effective treatment for appropriately selected patients with acne. This medication is the only treatment that targets all four of the identified factors underlying acne pathogenesis. In addition to the approved indication of resistant nodular scarring acne, clinical studies and experience have shown that other categories of patients benefit from isotretinoin therapy, including those with resistant scarring papular acne, those with resistant acne that interferes with normal living, those who have severe acne-related psychological sequelae, and those with acne who have a skin picking habit or compulsion. Semin Cutan Med Surg 34(supp5):S86-S88© 2015 published by Frontline Medical Communications.

Keywords: Acne; isotretinoin; topical retinoids; treatment barriers.