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Does Tazorac help with acne scars?

Can Tazorac gel or cream be used to treat pitted acne scars?

Medically reviewed by Melisa Puckey, BPharm. Last updated on Nov 24, 2020.

Official Answer

by Drugs.com

Does Tazorac help with acne scars?

Tazorac cream and Tazorac (tazarotene) gel do NOT have acne scar treatment as an FDA approved indication.

Tazarotene gel 0.1% has successfully treated atrophic post acne scarring in a small clinical trial using microneedling as an active control. An active control trial is when you are testing to find out if the test treatment (eg. tazarotene gel) is as good as a known effective treatment (eg. microneedling).

The conclusion of the trial using subjective scoring by the independent dermatologist showed that acne scarring improved by:

  • 45% with tazarotene gel 0.1% treatment
  • 55% with microneedling therapy

Both treatment options successfully reduced acne scarring, with the difference between each treatment option being not clinically relevant or statistically significant.

Tazarotene gel 0.1% is a home based topical treatment making it accessible to more patients, compared to microneedling which is an office based procedure.

Bottom line:

  • Tazorac cream and Tazorac gel do NOT have post acne scar treatment as an FDA approved indication.
  • Tazarotene gel 0.1% has been used for atrophic post acne scar treatment in a small clinical study.
  • In this one study, using subjective scoring by the independent dermatologist, atrophic post acne scarring improved by 45%.
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