Is long term Retin-A use recommended?

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Yes, I believe that most of my patients would benefit from the use of Retin-A on a daily basis. Some patient’s skin is more sensitive than others and this has to be titrated so that an appropriate amount of Retin-A can be used, but any sort of irritation and redness can be minimized. Retin-A is a very nice agent to improve cellular turnover. This in and of itself is a very light peeling agent and will rid the skin of the topmost layer called the stratum corneum and allow the skin to look more fresh and hydrated. Further, it is very useful to help with pigmentary issues due to the fact that it does increase cellular turnover. This therefore allows the skin’s own natural processes to rid itself of unnatural pigmentation in a more timely fashion. Retin-A in combination with hydroquinone is a very effective means of improving pigmentary issues in patient’s skin and if this is too irritating, we typically then place the patient on a combination therapy of the Retin-A, hydroquinone, and a topical steroid, which commercially available is called Tri-Luma. The bottom line is I feel that the far majority of my patients should be on Retin-A on a daily basis and that they just need to adjust the amount used to prevent any sort of irritation to the skin.

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