Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Application: Avoid contact with the eyes, eyelids, angles of the nose, mouth, easily irritated areas, or other areas where treatment is not intended. Do not apply tretinoin - erythromycin topical to severely inflamed skin or to open lesions. Do not use more of this medication than recommended by your doctor. Doing so will not speed up treatment and will irritate your skin.
Skin care: Cosmetics may be used, but thoroughly cleanse the areas to be treated before applying the medication. Try to avoid products applied to the skin that have high concentrations of alcohol, spices, or lime as they cause stinging and burning on treated skin. If possible, avoid using harsh abrasives and other skin treatments, including sunlamps, while using this medication.
Hair removal is permitted (e.g., plucking, electrolysis, depilatories), but avoid these procedures at night before applying tretinoin - erythromycin topical as they may result in skin irritation.
Permanent wave solutions, waxing preparations, and medicated soaps and shampoos can sometimes irritate skin that is not being treated with this medication. Use caution so that these products do not come into contact with skin treated with tretinoin.
Skin irritation: Some people may experience temporary skin irritation, especially in early weeks of treatment. Should excessive reactions occur and the skin becomes extremely red, swollen, and crusted, the medication should be stopped and you should contact your doctor.
An apparent worsening may develop due to the medication's effect on existing deep lesions. This is a normal part of the treatment effect. Treatment should be continued.
Sunlight exposure: Exposure to sunlight, including ultraviolet sunlamps, may cause more irritation. Therefore, avoid or minimize this type of exposure during the use of tretinoin. If you cannot avoid exposure to sunlight, use sunscreen products (minimum SPF 15) and wear protective clothing over treated areas. If you get a sunburn, stop using this medication until skin redness and peeling resolves.
Pregnancy: This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Women who may become pregnant should use an effective method of birth control while they are using this medication. If you become pregnant while using this medication, stop using it and contact your doctor.
Breast-feeding: Erythromycin passes into breast milk. It is not known if tretinoin passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking this medication, it may affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.
Children: The safety and effectiveness of using this medication have not been established for children.