Accutane Side Effects
For 30 years, dermatologists have prescribed the prescription drug Accutane to treat serious and recurring acne that antibiotics and other medications cannot successfully treat. Accutane (Isotretinoin) is administered in 10-mg, 20-mg, and 40-mg gelatin capsules for patients to take orally. Although Accutane has been successful in treating severe recalcitrant nodular acne by slowing down the production of a certain chemical in the body that causes pimples, Accutane also has a number of serious side effects that can cause life-altering illnesses and health complications.
Commonly referred to by its brand name Accutane, Isotretinoin is a naturally-occurring form of Vitamin A that has been used since the early 1980s to treat a variety of illnesses along with acne. This includes other skin conditions as well as pancreatic and even brain cancer. Patients taking Accutane typically take it twice a day with meals and a full glass of water. Unfortunately, many patients who took Accutane experienced a number of devastating side effects, some of which they weren’t warned about in advance.
Potential Side Effects
Because of the severity of many side effects associated with Accutane, the Federal Drug Administration has required the drug to carry a Black Box Label – the sternest warning label any drug can carry and still be on the market. Also, because of the severity of these side effects, Accutane prescriptions can only be prescribed by doctors and pharmacists who are FDA certified. Some of the most common and most severe side effects you could suffer while taking, and possibly even after taking, Accutane include the following:
- Chronic Bowel Disorders – This includes a number of diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s Disease, and Ulcerative Colitis.
- Birth Defects – This includes serious mental retardation, facial deformation, and visual or hearing impairments in children born to women who took this drug while pregnant.
- Emotional Problems – Accutane has been known to cause emotional problems such as severe depression and thoughts of suicide.
- Other Side Effects – Thinning hair or hair loss, sensitivity to sunlight, slow-healing bruises or cuts, and extreme fatigue have all been connected to Accutane use.
These side effects range in severity, but they can all have a devastating impact on your life. If you or someone you know is suffering from any of these side effects after taking Accutane, you may be eligible for compensation from the makers of this dangerous drug.
What to Avoid While Taking Accutane
If you are currently taking Accutane, there are a number of things you should be aware of. Most importantly, if you are a woman taking Accutane, make sure you are using proper birth control to prevent pregnancy, as Accutane can result in devastating birth defects.
Patients should also not take Vitamin A supplements along with Accutane, as this combination could cause an unhealthy level of the vitamin in your body. You should also avoid donating blood if you are taking or have recently taken Accutane, and you should also avoid spending a large amount of time in the sun or in a tanning bed. Accutane can make your skin very sensitive to harmful UV rays, increasing your risk of being sunburned and developing skin cancer.
Taking Legal Action
Suffering from any of the harmful side effects listed above could drastically affect your life physically, emotionally, and financially. If you are interested in learning more about your legal rights and options as a victim of this medication, you may want to consider filing an Accutane lawsuit today.