Mequinol and tretinoin (Topical)
Medically reviewed on June 7, 2018
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
Therapeutic Class: Hypopigmentation Agent
Chemical Class: Retinoid
Uses For mequinol and tretinoin
Mequinol and Tretinoin is used to treat areas of the skin that have become darker after repeated exposure to the sun. These areas are called solar lentigines, or age or liver spots.
Mequinol and tretinoin is available only with your doctor's prescription.
Before Using mequinol and tretinoin
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For mequinol and tretinoin, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to mequinol and tretinoin or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Studies on mequinol and tretinoin have been done only in adult patients, and there is no specific information comparing use of mequinol and tretinoin in children with use in other age groups. Mequinol and tretinoin should not be used in children.
Mequinol and tretinoin has been tested and has not been shown to cause different side effects or problems in older people than it does in younger adults.
|All Trimesters||X||Studies in animals or pregnant women have demonstrated positive evidence of fetal abnormalities. This drug should not be used in women who are or may become pregnant because the risk clearly outweighs any possible benefit.|
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with Medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking mequinol and tretinoin, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using mequinol and tretinoin with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Aminocaproic Acid
- Tranexamic Acid
Using mequinol and tretinoin with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other Medical Problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of mequinol and tretinoin. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Eczema or
- Frequent exposure to sunlight or sunlamps or
- Sunburn—Use of mequinol and tretinoin may cause or increase the irritation associated with these conditions
- Vitiligo (or a family history of this condition)—Use of mequinol and tretinoin may cause lightening of areas of the skin that have not been treated
Proper Use of mequinol and tretinoin
It is very important that you use mequinol and tretinoin only as directed. Do not use more of it, do not use it more often, and do not use it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. To do so may cause irritation of the skin.
Do not apply mequinol and tretinoin to windburned or sunburned skin or on open wounds.
Do not use mequinol and tretinoin in or around the eyes or lips, or inside of the nose. Spread the medicine away from these areas when applying. If the medicine accidentally gets on these areas, wash with water at once.
Mequinol and tretinoin usually comes with patient directions. Read them carefully before using the medicine.
To use mequinol and tretinoin:
- Using the applicator tip, apply enough mequinol and tretinoin solution to cover the affected areas. Apply only enough medicine to make the lesion appear moist. Avoid areas of normally colored skin.
- You should not shower or bathe for at least 6 hours after applying the medicine.
- Cosmetics may be applied 30 minutes after application of the medicine.
The dose of mequinol and tretinoin will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of mequinol and tretinoin. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For topical dosage form (solution):
- For age or liver spots:
- Adults —Apply to the affected areas of the skin twice daily, morning and evening, at least 8 hours apart.
- Children—Use is not recommended.
- For age or liver spots:
If you miss a dose of mequinol and tretinoin, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
The product is flammable and should be kept away from fire or excessive heat.
Precautions While Using mequinol and tretinoin
You may notice redness, stinging, burning or irritation when you first start using mequinol and tretinoin. It may take up to 6 months before you notice full beneficial effects, even if you use the medicine every day. Check with your health care professional at any time skin irritation becomes severe or if your age spots get darker in color.
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, it is especially important to avoid using the following skin products on the same area as mequinol and tretinoin topical solution:
- Hair products that are irritating, such as permanents or hair removal products
- Skin products that cause sensitivity to the sun, such as those containing spices or limes
- Skin products containing a large amount of alcohol, such as astringents, shaving creams, or after-shave lotions
- Skin products that are too drying or abrasive, such as some cosmetics, soaps, or skin cleansers
Using these products along with mequinol and tretinoin may cause mild to severe irritation of the skin. Check with your doctor before using other topical medicines.
Avoid overexposing the treated areas to sunlight, wind, or cold weather. The skin will be more prone to sunburn, dryness, or irritation. Do not use a sunlamp.
Regularly use sunscreen or sunblocking lotions with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15. Also, wear protective clothing and hats, and apply creams, lotions, or moisturizers often.
Check with your doctor any time your skin becomes too dry and irritated. Your health care professional can help you choose the right skin products for you to reduce skin dryness and irritation and may include :
- Taking part in an ongoing program to avoid further damage to your skin from the sun. The program should stress staying out of the sun when possible and wearing proper clothing or hats to protect your skin from sunlight.
- Regular use of oil-based creams or lotions to help to reduce skin irritation or dryness caused by the use of mequinol and tretinoin topical solution.
Mequinol and tretinoin Side Effects
In some animal studies, mequinol and tretinoin has been shown to cause skin tumors to develop faster when the treated area is exposed to ultraviolet light (sunlight or artificial sunlight from a sunlamp). Other studies have not shown the same result and more studies need to be done. It is not known if mequinol and tretinoin topical solution causes skin tumors to develop faster in humans.
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
- Burning feeling or stinging skin (severe)
- itching (severe)
- peeling of skin (severe)
- redness of skin (severe)
- Allergic reaction
- large blisters on the skin
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
- Burning feeling, stinging, or tingling of skin (mild)—lasting for a short time after first applying the medicine
- itching (mild)
- chapping or slight peeling of skin (mild)
- lightening of skin around treated area
- lightening of skin on treated area
- redness of skin (mild)
- skin irritation
- unusually warm skin (mild)
- Crusting of skin
- dry skin
- skin rash
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
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