Tazarotene cream is a topical medication that helps to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and discoloration. It is also used to treat certain types of acne and to prevent new pimples from forming. This medication belongs to a class of drugs called retinoids. It works by changing the way that cells in your skin grow and work. This medicine is available only by prescription.
It is recommended that you use this medication at the same time each day to get the most benefit from it. You should wash your hands before and after applying this medication, and then dry the area well. A pea-sized amount of this medication should be applied to the affected areas on your face, as directed by your doctor. This medication can be used with a moisturizer or other skin care product if needed, but make sure that both products are completely absorbed before you apply the next application of this medication.
You should not use this medication if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It contains a type of drug known as a retinoid, and retinoids can harm a developing fetus.
Acne occurs when a buildup of dead skin cells and sebum (oil) blocks pores. Bacteria then feed on this material, leading to inflammation and the development of blackheads and whiteheads. In severe cases, large painful nodules may form deep in the skin. Tazarotene helps to clear acne by slowing the production of skin cells and unblocking pores. It may also be useful in reducing inflammation in the skin that is associated with acne.
This medication is also sometimes used “off-label” to treat other conditions, such as psoriasis or facial redness and discoloration. It is important to tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of the medications you take, including vitamins and herbs. Doing so can help to prevent drug interactions.
In some people, this medication can cause mild side effects, such as skin irritation and redness in and around the area where it is applied. If these side effects are bothersome, your doctor may suggest using a lower strength of this medication. They may also recommend that you combine this medication with other treatments, such as benzoyl peroxide (Benzaclin, Duac, Epiduo) to help manage these symptoms.
It is recommended that you avoid prolonged exposure to both real and artificial sunlight (sunlamps, tanning beds) while you are taking this medication. This is because tazarotene can increase your skin’s sensitivity to the sun and other harsh weather conditions.
Store this medication at room temperature between 68 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit (20 and 25 degrees Celsius). Keep it out of the reach of children. Do not use this medication after the expiration date on the packaging has passed. Proper disposal of unused medication is important to prevent others from accidentally taking it and to protect the environment. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about safe ways to dispose of unused medication.