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Is there a limit on the amount of isotretinoin I can receive for my acne?

Dr. Doris Day, MD
Dermatology

Because isotretinoin can affect bones and other organ systems, there is a maximal lifetime dose that is considered safe and appropriate in order to minimize the risk of adverse long-term reactions. Most people on a typical course of the drug of 0.8 mg/kg for a 16- to 20-week course could do three treatment courses over their lifetime if necessary. Many doctors will use the approximate 0.8 mg/kg as an average treatment dose but will not hesitate to increase the dose in order to get the desired results. Many of the side effects are dose related and can limit the amount of drug given.

Sometimes low-dose isotretinoin is very effective, and this not only minimizes side effects but also allows for it to be used intermittently, over time, as needed and with proper monitoring without concern of reaching the maximal dosage.

100 Questions & Answers About Acne

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100 Questions & Answers About Acne

100 Questions and Answers About Acne provides you with all the information you need to manage your complexion problems. Written by Dr. Doris J. Day, a world-class expert in the field, this clearly...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.