Tazorac (tazarotene)

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Brand Name

Tazorac {Allergan Inc.}

Generic Name

tazarotene, pronounced taz-AR-oh-teen


What is Tazorac?

Tazorac is a topical cream that is similar to vitamin A. This cream may be prescribed to treat acne vulgaris in adults and adolescents who are at least 12 years of age, as well as plaque psoriasis in adults.

Tazorac may also be used for reasons not stated in this medication guide.


Key Facts About Tazorac

Tazorac contains a compound that is similar to vitamin A which helps your skin to renew itself more quickly, which can lead to an improved appearance and texture of your skin.

Tazorac should be used with extreme caution in children, and only children over 12 years of age should receive a prescription for Tazorac.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Tazorac is in FDA pregnancy category X. It is known that Tazorac can cause severe health problems in your newborn. You should not use Tazorac if you are pregnant. You must have a negative pregnancy test within two weeks of starting treatment with Tazorac. If you become pregnant while using Tazorac stop taking this medication and tell your doctor right away.

You should not breastfeed while using Tazorac as we do not know if Tazorac can pass into breast milk and harm a nursing baby.


Before You Take Tazorac

If you are allergic to tazarotene you should not use Tazorac.

If you have an open wound, eczema, sunburn or another skin condition you should not use Tazorac.

Talk to your doctor before starting treatment with Tazorac if you have a personal or family history of skin cancer or lentigo maligna, which is a certain type of skin cancer.

If you have a history of allergic reactions to skin products talk to your doctor before using Tazorac.

If you work outdoors or are sensitive to sunlight tell your doctor before beginning treatment with Tazorac. Tazorac can cause you to be more sensitive to the effects of the sun and burn easily. Take care to wear protective clothing and SPF 30 or higher when out in the sun while you are using Tazorac.


Tazorac Drug Interactions

You should inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following medications:

  • antibiotics like ciprofloxacin (Cipro), gemifloxacin (Factive), levofloxacin (Levaquin), moxifloxacin (Avelox), norfloxacin (Noroxin) and ofloxacin (Floxin)
  • diuretics or water pills like chlorothiazide (Diuril), hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ, HydroDiuril, Hyzaar, Lopressor HCT), chlorthalidone (Hygroton, Thalitone), indapamide (Lozol) and metolazone (Mykrox, Zaroxolyn)
  • doxycycline (Doryx, Oracea or Vibramycin)
  • minocycline (Dynacin, Minocin, Solodyn)
  • phenothiazines like chlorpromazine (Thorazine), fluphenazine (Permitil, Prolixin), perphenazine (Trilafon), prochlorperazine (Compazine, Compro), promethazine (Pentazine, Phenergan, Anergan, Antinaus), thioridazine (Mellaril) and trifluoperazine (Stelazine)
  • sulfa drugs like Bactrim, Septra and Sulfatrim
  • tetracycline (Ala-Tet, Brodspec, Panmycin, Sumycin, Tetracap)

Other drugs you take that are not listed may interact with Tazorac. You should tell your doctor about all of the medications you use. This includes prescription drugs, vitamins, supplements and herbal products, and over the counter medications. You should not begin taking a new medication without telling your doctor first.


Directions for Taking Tazorac

You should take Tazorac exactly as directed by your doctor. It is important that you do not take Tazorac in larger or smaller amounts, or for longer or shorter than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label and follow any dose changes carefully if your doctor instructs you to change your dose.

While you are using Tazorac take care to keep the affected area clean and dry. Apply the prescribed amount of the Tazorac cream with clean hands.

Do not use Tazorac at the same time that you are applying benzoyl peroxide. You should use Tazorac in the evening and benzoyl peroxide in the morning.

You should not apply Tazorac to chapped, irritated, sunburned or wind burned skin.

Take care not to get Tazorac in your eyes, mouth or nose.

Talk to your doctor if you are concerned about other products that you use that may irritate your skin like scented soaps, perfumes, skin products with alcohol or medicated shampoo.

Tazorac can cause you to be more sensitive to the effects of the sun and burn easily. Take care to wear protective clothing and SPF 30 or higher when out in the sun while you are using Tazorac. Do not use tanning beds while taking Tazorac.

Tazorac needs to be stored at room temperature, and away from light, moisture and heat.

If you miss a dose of Tazorac you should attempt to take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Do not apply extra Tazorac to make up for a missed dose.


Tazorac Side Effects

If you experience any of the following adverse effects you should stop taking Tazorac and seek emergency medical help immediately:

  • allergic reactions such as breathing difficulties, hives, or swelling of your face, lips, throat or tongue
  • blistering with severe itching, peeling and redness
  • swelling of your skin with oozing, warmth or signs of a skin infection

Less serious side effects of Tazorac may include:

  • mild burning
  • dryness of your skin
  • mild itching and stinging
  • mild pain, redness and irritation
  • peeling of your skin

It should be noted that this is not a complete list of possible side effects of Tazorac. You should contact your physician for a complete list and medical advice regarding these effects.


Tazorac Description and Dosing

Tazorac is available as a Gel in 0.05% and 0.1% strengths. The Tazorac Gel 0.05%
is indicated for the topical treatment of patients with stable plaque psoriasis. The Tazorac Gel 0.1% is also indicated for the topical treatment of patients with facial acne vulgaris that is mild to moderate.

You should consult your doctor for specific dosing pertaining to you. Do not attempt to alter or change your dose without your physician’s consent.

If you suspect that you have overdosed with Tazorac you should seek emergency help immediately.



Ingredients in Tazorac

Tazorac is comprised of the main ingredient tazarotene 0.05% or 0.1%. Benzyl alcohol 1% is a preservative in Tazorac. Other inactive ingredients include Ascorbic acid, butylated hydroxyanisole, butylated hydroxytoluene, carbomer homopolymer type B, edetate disodium, hexylene glycol, poloxamer 407, polyethylene glycol 400, polysorbate 40, purified water and tromethamine.

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The information contained in this drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

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