Also indexed as: Accutane
Isotretinoin is a modified vitamin A molecule used to treat severe acne vulgaris.
Interactions with Vitamins, Herbs, and Foods
In some cases, an herb or supplement may appear in more than one category, which may seem
contradictory. For clarification, read the full article for details about the summarized
| May Be Beneficial: Side effect
reduction/prevention—Taking these supplements may help reduce the likelihood and/or
severity of a potential side effect caused by the medication.
Avoid: Adverse interaction—Avoid these supplements when taking this
medication because taking them together may cause undesirable or dangerous results.
|Depletion or interference
An asterisk (*) next to an item in the summary indicates that the
interaction is supported only by weak, fragmentary, and/or contradictory scientific
Interactions with Dietary Supplements
Although little is known about how isotretinoin interacts with real vitamin A, the two are
structurally similar and have similar toxicities. Therefore, people taking isotretinoin should
avoid vitamin A supplements at levels higher than typically found in a multivitamin (10,000 IU per day).
Preliminary research has found that combined administration of isotretinoin and vitamin E
(alpha-tocopherol) substantially reduces the initial toxicity of high-dose isotretinoin
without reducing drug efficacy.1 Additional research is needed to further clarify
this potentially beneficial interaction.
1. Dimery IW, Hong WK, Lee JJ, et al. Phase I trial of alpha-tocopherol
effects on 13-cis-retinoic acid toxicity. Ann Oncol 1997;8:85–9.