A randomized study was conducted to evaluate the effect of tretinoin and patient tolerance to treatment with topical applications in series of 20 cases of smoking-related or traumatic oral keratoses leukoplakia and of 20 cases of lichen planus. In each group, patients applied the topical ointment containing tretinoin (10 patients) or placebo (10 patients) twice daily. Clinical outcome was evaluated on the basis of the surface area of the lesion, measured monthly during treatment, as compared with the area observed at treatment onset. After 4 months treatment, there was a significant decrease in the surface area of the lesion in the patients with lichen planus (p < 0.02): 94 p. 100 in the tretinoin group versus 21.4 p. 100 in the placebo group. In patients with leukoplakias, there was also a very significant reduction in the surface area of the lesion after 4 months of treatment (p < 0.001): 80 p. 100 in the tretinoin group and 16 p. 100 in the placebo group. Tolerance to treatment was generally good despite a few complaints of quite temporary burning sensation at application rapidly resolutive.