Treats certain types of severe acne.
Amnesteem, Sotret, Claravis, Accutane
There may be other brand names for this medicine.
When This Medicine Should Not Be Used
You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to isotretinoin or parabens (a preservative). Do not use this medicine if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during your treatment.You should not use this medicine if you cannot follow all of the instructions in the Medication Guide.
How to Use This Medicine
Liquid Filled Capsule
- Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
- This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. Ask your pharmacist for the Medication Guide if you do not have one. Your doctor might ask you to sign some forms to show that you understand this information.
- It is best to take this medicine with food or milk. Swallow the capsule whole with a full glass (8 ounces) of water or other liquid. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
If a dose is missed:
- If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine
- Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.
- Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using a tetracycline antibiotic, St. John's wort, any kind of vitamin A supplement, or a steroid such as cortisone, dexamethasone, hydrocortisone, methylprednisolone, prednisolone, prednisone, or Orapred®. Tell your doctor if you are using a medicine to control seizures such as phenytoin (Dilantin®), carbamazepine (Tegretol®), or phenobarbital.
- Some medicines may cause birth control pills to not work as well. To keep from getting pregnant while you are using Accutane®, you must use another form of birth control such as a condom, diaphragm, vaginal sponge, or contraceptive foam or jelly.
- Avoid skin treatments or wax hair removal while you are using this medicine, and for at least 6 months after your last dose.
- Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
Warnings While Using This Medicine
- Using this medicine while you are pregnant can cause very serious birth defects. Use two forms of birth control for 1 month before starting this medicine, the entire time you are using this medicine, and for 1 month after your last dose. If you are using birth control pills, ask your doctor if your pills are a good kind to use. Some kinds of birth control pills may not work as well. You will be required to have a pregnancy test every month during treatment. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are breast feeding, or if you have bowel or digestion problems, diabetes, heart disease, asthma, or liver disease. Tell your doctor if you or anyone in your family has had anorexia (an eating disorder) or any other kind of mental illness, or a bone problem such as osteoporosis (thinning bones). Make sure your doctor knows if you have high cholesterol or triglycerides (fat in your blood).
- Some people who have used this medicine have become very depressed or angry. Tell your doctor right away if you think this medicine is causing changes in your mood or behavior. Some signs of this may be feeling very sad, getting upset easily, thinking about hurting yourself or someone else, feeling nervous, having trouble sleeping or sleeping too much, eating more or less than usual, gaining weight, losing weight, or having trouble thinking.
- This medicine may cause problems with bones or muscles. You may get hurt more easily during rough sports. You may heal more slowly. If this medicine is for your child, tell the doctor if you think your child is not growing properly.
- Your skin problems may get worse for a short time before they start to improve. Your acne may continue to get better even after you stop using this medicine. Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
- Do not donate blood while using this medicine or for 1 month after your last dose.
- This medicine may make your skin more sensitive to sunlight. Use a sunscreen when you are outdoors. Avoid sunlamps and tanning beds.
- This medicine may affect your vision, especially at night. Avoid driving, using heavy machines, or doing anything else that may be dangerous if you have any change in your vision.
- This medicine may raise or lower your blood sugar, or it may cover up symptoms of very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
- Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
- Blood in your urine, or foamy urine.
- Chest pain, fast or uneven heartbeat.
- Hearing problems or ringing in your ears.
- Muscle weakness.
- Severe diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, or bleeding from your rectum.
- Sudden or severe headache, problems with vision, speech, or walking.
- Sudden and severe stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, fever, and lightheadedness.
- Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness.
- Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes, dark-colored urine, or pale stools.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Dry, itching, or peeling skin, dry eyes, or dry, cracked lips, mouth, or nose.
- Increase in thirst or how much you urinate.
- Muscle, back, or joint pain or aching (more likely in children).
- New or worsening heartburn.
- Skin rash.
- Trouble swallowing, or painful swallowing.
- Trouble wearing contact lenses.