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© J-C 2011

GB - AW_69086

Retin-A gel 0.01%
Retin-A gel 0.025%

Retin-A is a registered trademark

Read all of this leaflet carefully
before you start using this medicine.

• Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again
• If you have any further questions, ask your
doctor or pharmacist
• This medicine has been prescribed for you.
Do not pass it on to others. It may harm them,
even if their symptoms are the same as yours
• If you get side effects and they become serious
or if you notice any side effects not listed in this
leaflet, please tell your doctor or pharmacist

In this leaflet
1 What Retin-A is and what it is used for
2 Before you use Retin-A
3 How to use Retin-A
4 Possible side effects
5 How to store Retin-A
6 Further information

1 What Retin-A is and what it is used for
The name of your medicine is Retin-A gel.
It is called ‘Retin-A’ in this leaflet. Retin-A contains
a medicine called tretinoin. This is similar
to Vitamin A.

Retin-A is used to treat acne (also called acne
vulgaris) and is for use in people with oily skin.
It will normally take 6 to 8 weeks for your skin to
improve. This means you will need to be patient.

2 Before you use Retin-A
Do not use Retin-A if:

• You are allergic to anything in Retin-A gel
(listed in section 6 below)
• You have ever had a tumour of the top layer of
your skin, or if this condition runs in your family
• You have inflamed, red, dry and scaly skin
• You have a skin problem which can cause
redness on the cheeks, nose, chin or forehead
(acne rosacea)
• The skin around your mouth is irritated (peri-oral
• You have sunburn or skin irritation with redness,
peeling or itching. Your skin will need time to
recover from this before you start using Retin-A
• You have been using a skin peeling agent
(which removes the top layers of your skin).
Your skin will need time to recover before you
start using Retin-A
Retin-A is not recommended for children under
10 years of age.
Do not use this medicine if any of the above
applies to you. If you are not sure, talk to your
doctor or pharmacist before using Retin-A.

Using other skin products

• You should not use harsh (astringent) or rough
(exfoliating) cosmetic products while using
Retin-A. This includes skin peeling agents
(which remove the top layers of the skin)
or products that contain alcohol, spices or lime.
It also includes products which have a strong
drying effect on your skin (such as some face
masks, cleansers or toners)
• You should avoid using medicated soaps and
shampoos or getting permanent wave solutions

and waxing products on skin being treated
with Retin-A as these can irritate your skin
• You may use ordinary make-up or moisturisers
but do not apply them at the same time as Retin-A
• You can still remove hair by plucking, electrolysis
or hair removal creams, but if you do this before
applying Retin-A it could irritate your skin

Taking other medicines

Please tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are
having or have recently had any other medicines,
particularly other medicines applied to your skin.
This includes medicines that you buy without
a prescription or herbal medicines. This is because
Retin-A can affect the way some other medicines
work. Also some other medicines can affect the way
Retin-A works. Using Retin-A with other medicines
for the treatment of acne may irritate your skin.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding

Do not use this medicine if you are pregnant,
think you may be pregnant or might become
pregnant. This is because it may affect the baby.
Talk to your doctor before using this medicine
if you are breast-feeding.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice before
taking any medicine if you are pregnant
or breast-feeding.

Important information about some
of the ingredients of Retin-A

• Retin-A gel contains butylated hydroxytoluene
(E321). This can irritate your eyes, eyelids, mouth
and nostrils if it comes into contact with them

3 How to use Retin-A
Always use Retin-A exactly as your doctor has
told you. You should check with your doctor
or pharmacist if you are not sure.

How much to use

• Normally you start by using Retin-A once
or twice a day

AW_69086.pdf - Page 1 of 3 - October 23, 2012 - 11:59:57

• When your skin has improved your doctor may
suggest that you use it less often. It may take
6 to 8 weeks of treatment before your skin

© J-C 2011

GB - AW_69086

3 How to use Retin-A (continued)
Preparing your skin

Before applying Retin-A:
• Wash your skin thoroughly with a mild soap
• Dry your skin without rubbing
• Do not wash treated skin more than twice a day

How and where to use

You only need to apply a small amount
Lightly cover the affected areas of your skin
Use cotton wool or the tips of clean fingers
Do not let too much of this medicine collect
in folds of the skin, such as where your nose
meets your face
• Do not use any Retin-A on cracked or weeping
skin (such as eczema)
• Do not use any Retin-A on your eyes, eyelids,
nostrils or mouth (mucous membranes). If it goes
into any of these areas, wash them with water

Protection from the sun, cold or wind
Avoid being in the sun for too long while you are
using Retin-A. Do not use sunlamps or sunbeds
while you are using Retin-A.

If you need to go out in the sun often:
• Use a sunscreen lotion with a sun protection
factor (SPF) of at least 15
• Wear a broad-rimmed hat
• Wear loose cotton clothes that will protect
treated areas of your skin from the sun
While using Retin-A, you may also get some
skin irritation in very cold or windy weather
or dry atmospheres.

If you use too much Retin-A

Do not use too much of this medicine. Your skin
will not improve any faster. If you use too much
Retin-A your skin might go red. It may also peel
and feel uncomfortable. If this happens, stop using
Retin-A until all these symptoms have gone away.

If you swallow Retin-A

Only use Retin-A on the skin. If any is swallowed
talk to a doctor or go to the nearest hospital
casualty department straight away.
If you have any further questions on the use
of this product, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

4 Possible side effects
Like all medicines, Retin-A can cause side
effects, although not everybody gets them.
Stop using Retin-A and tell your doctor
straight away if you notice any of the
following serious side effects. You may
need medical treatment.
• Severe irritation or reddening of your skin, hives
or nettle rash (urticaria) or other signs of allergy
during the first few days of treatment. This only
happens in a small number of people
• Blistering or scabby skin
• A burning feeling on the skin or swollen face
• Your eye or eyes become irritated
If you get any of the above, stop using this
medicine and tell your doctor straight away.
Other possible side effects include:
Very common (affects more than 1 in 10 people)
• Scaly hard skin
• Painful skin such as a stinging

Common (affects fewer than 1 in 10 people)
• Headache
• Itchy, irritated or red skin
• Rash (sometimes with pimples), dermatitis
• Dry or peeling skin
Uncommon (affects fewer than 1 in 100 people)
• Changes in skin colour
• Sensitivity to light
• Feeling hot
Rare (affects fewer than 1 in 1000 people)
• Light or dark patches on your skin
If any of the above is severe or lasts for a long
time, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
It is not known whether using Retin-A can increase
the risk of skin tumours caused by sunlight.
If you get side effects and they become serious
or if you notice any other side effects not listed in
this leaflet, please tell your doctor or pharmacist.

5 How to store Retin-A
Keep out of the reach and sight of children.
Do not store above 25°C.
Do not use Retin-A after the expiry date which
is stated on the label. The expiry date refers
to the last day of that month.
Do not use the Retin-A if you notice that the
tube seal is broken or missing.

Medicines should not be disposed of via
wastewater or household waste. Ask your
pharmacist how to dispose of medicines
no longer required. These measures will help
protect the environment.

6 Further information
The active substance in Retin-A is tretinoin.
Retin-A gel contains either 0.01% or 0.025%
of tretinoin.
The other ingredients are butylated
hydroxytoluene (E321), hydroxypropyl cellulose
(E463) and undenatured ethanol.

What Retin-A looks like and contents
of the pack
Retin-A gel (both strengths) is a 60 g aluminium
tube containing a clear yellow gel.
The product licence is held by:
JANSSEN-CILAG LTD, 50-100 Holmers
Farm Way, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire
HP12 4EG, UK

AW_69086.pdf - Page 2 of 3 - October 23, 2012 - 11:59:57

Retin-A is made by:
Janssen Pharmaceutica NV, Turnhoutseweg 30,
B-2340 Beerse, Belgium

For information in large
print, tape, CD or Braille,
telephone 0800 7318450.
This leaflet was last revised in November 2012.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.