Accutane, also known as isotretinoin, is used to treat cystic acne (also known as nodular acne or scarring acne) or severe acne that has not responded to other treatment. Accutane is a powerful medication that can only be prescribed by a medical professional, however despite numerous side effects, it has proven results to clear acne ridden skin.
About the Procedure
Accutane belongs to a class of drugs known as retinoids (meaning it is related to Vitamin A). It works by decreasing sebum, or facial oil, production. High amounts of sebum can lead to severe acne due to clogged pores. If untreated, severe acne may cause permanent scarring which can have emotional and phycological effects. Accutane is typically only prescribed when other methods of treatment have been unsuccessful such as with benzoyl peroxide products. Always take Accutane with a glass of water to prevent the capsule from melting in the esophagus causing irritation. Never chew or suck on the capsule. Swallow the capsule as quickly as possible. Acne may seem worse at the onset of taking Accutane however it is important to take the medication for the entire length of time prescribed. Acne will improve over the course of the treatment period which typically lasts between 4 and 5 months. To be sure Accutane is not causing adverse effects, blood and liver function may need to be tested often.
Commonly Treated Concerns
Typical Cost Range
$100 – $500
Accutane is not recommended for patients who are pregnant trying to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.