1mg, best e pharmacy in India

Retinoic Acid



Retinoic acid, a natural acidic derivative of vitamin A (retinol) is used to treat common form of acne, in teens and young adults, scaly skin rash, and various other skin diseases. It is also used in the treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) - a type of blood cancer.

How it works

Retinoic acid belongs to a class of drugs known as keratolytic agents. It works by promoting breaking of protein that is found in the hair, nails, and skin keratinocytes thereby causing peeling of the skin.
It is also a type of anti-cancer drug called as differentiating agents. It works by binding to retinoic acid receptors and activating them. This causes change in gene expression leading to cell differentiation and subsequently inhibiting tumor formation.

Common side effects

Flushing, Gastrointestinal disturbance, Decreased white blood cell count


No medicine available

Expert advice

  • Inform your doctor if you are on any other antibacterial or any vitamin- A medication.
  • Tell your doctor if you are suffering from or have a medical history of any type of itchy skin rash.
  • Do not take if  allergic to retinoic acid or any of its ingredients.
  • Do not take if Pregnant or breastfeeding women.

Content on this page was last updated on 30 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)