Last Updated 18 Sep 2012
Isotrexin (Eye-soh-trek-sin) is a medicine which is used in treating acne. Isotrexin contains erythromycin/isotretinoin. It is supplied by GlaxoSmithKline UK.
The information in this Medicine Guide for Isotrexin varies according to the condition being treated and the particular preparation used.
Isotrexin contains two medicines – erythromycin and isotretinoin. Erythromycin is an antibiotic and works by stopping the growth of bacteria associated with acne. Isotretinoin stops the formation of blackheads or whiteheads. Both medicines also work to reduce the inflammation that occurs with acne.
Isotrexin can cause your skin to become more sensitive to all forms of UV light. While you are using Isotrexin, it is important to protect the skin from the effects of UV light. You should try reducing the time you are exposed to direct sunlight. Areas which have been treated with Isotrexin should not be exposed to the sun and should be covered with appropriate clothing or a high protection sun screen. You should also avoid using tanning beds or lamps while you are using Isotrexin.
You should take care not to apply too much of Isotrexin as the skin may become red, irritated or start to peel. Using more than the amount prescribed does not lead to a better or faster treatment of acne.
You should be careful not to get Isotrexin in or around your eyes, mouth, nose or mucous membranes. Do not apply Isotrexin onto irritated areas of skin or onto skin with eczema. You must be careful when applying Isotrexin to your neck or other areas of sensitive skin. For more information about using Isotrexin on areas of sensitive skin, talk to your prescriber. Wash your hands after using Isotrexin.
Other information about Isotrexin:
Do not share your medicine with other people. It may not be suitable for them and may harm them.
The pharmacy label on your medicine tells you how much medicine you should use. It also tells you how often you should use your medicine. This is the dose that you and your prescriber have agreed you should use. You should not change the dose of your medicine unless you are told to do so by your prescriber.
Some medicines have specific instructions about how to take them. This is because they work better when taken correctly. These instructions can include getting the right dose and special instructions for preparing the medicine.
In the case of Isotrexin:
If you are having problems taking this medicine, you should talk to your prescriber or pharmacist. They may be able to give you advice on other ways to take your medicine or other medicines that are easier for you to take.
Taking extra doses of some medicines can be harmful. In some cases even one extra dose can cause you problems. If you take extra doses of your medicine, you must get medical advice immediately. This is because the effects of taking too much medicine are very complex so it is very important that you seek medical advice.
The instructions on how you should keep your medicine are on the pharmacy label. You should keep your medicine in the original container. This will help to keep your medicine in the best condition and also allow you to check the instructions. Do not take the medicine if the packaging appears to have been tampered with or if the medicine shows any signs of damage. Make sure that the medicine is out of the sight and reach of children.
In the case of Isotrexin:
Isotrexin is not suitable for everyone and some people should never use it. Other people should only use it with special care. It is important that the person prescribing this medicine knows your full medical history.
Over time it is possible that Isotrexin can become unsuitable for some people, or they may become unsuitable for it. If at any time it appears that Isotrexin has become unsuitable, it is important that the prescriber is contacted immediately.
Once a medicine has been licensed, information on the medicine's effects, both intended and unintended, is continuously recorded and updated.
Some side-effects may be serious while others may only be a mild inconvenience.
Everyone's reaction to a medicine is different. It is difficult to predict which side-effects you will have from taking a particular medicine, or whether you will have any side-effects at all. The important thing is to tell your prescriber or pharmacist if you are having problems with your medicine.
If you feel unwell or if you have concerns about a side-effect, you will need to seek advice. If you feel very ill, get medical help straight away. Contact your prescriber, pharmacist, nurse or call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47.
The decision to use medicines that interact depends on your specific circumstances. Your prescriber may decide to use medicines that interact, if it is believed that the benefits of taking the medicines together outweigh the risks. In such cases, it may be necessary to alter your dose or monitor you more closely.
Tell your prescriber the names of all the medicines that you are taking so that they can consider all possible interactions. This includes all the medicines which have been prescribed by your GP, hospital doctor, dentist, nurse, health visitor, midwife or pharmacist. You must also tell your prescriber about medicines which you have bought over the counter without prescriptions.
Medicines can interact with complementary preparations and vitamins. In general, there is not much information available about interactions between medicines and complementary preparations or vitamins.
Your prescriber can advise whether it is appropriate for you to take combinations that are known to interact. They can also discuss with you the possible effect that the complementary preparations and vitamins may have on your condition.
When taking any medicine you should be aware that it might interfere with your ability to drive or operate machinery safely.
Like all medicines Isotrexin can cause side effects. You should see how this medicine affects you and then judge if you are safe to drive or operate machinery. If you are in any doubt, talk to your prescriber.
Most medicines, in some way, can affect the development of a baby in the womb. The effect on the baby differs between medicines and also depends on the stage of pregnancy that you have reached when you take the medicine.
In the case of Isotrexin:
If you are planning to become pregnant, you should discuss your personal circumstances with your doctor so that together you can make a decision about what treatment you may need during your pregnancy.
Certain medicines can pass into breast milk and may reach your baby through breast-feeding.
In the case of Isotrexin:
Before you have your baby you should discuss breast-feeding with your doctor or midwife. If you wish to breast-feed you should discuss with your prescriber whether there are any other medicines you could use which would also allow you to breast-feed.
Medicines contain active ingredients. They may also contain other, additional ingredients that help ensure the stability, safety and effectiveness of the medicine. They are also added to improve the medicine's appearance and to make it easier to use. Some may be used to prolong the life of the medicine.
If you are not able to take any of the ingredients in your medicine, talk to your prescriber or pharmacist to see if they can suggest an alternative medicine. If you have reacted badly to Isotrexin before, do not use Isotrexin. Talk to your prescriber, pharmacist or nurse as soon as possible.
Isotrexin, Version 6, last updated 18 Sep 2012