The active ingredient tazarotene is a retinoid. The medicine is usually used externally. It is applied locally in the form of gel or ointment for the treatment of psoriasis (psoriasis) of the plaque type. The drug is also referred to as Tazarotene or Tazarot.

What is Tazaroten?

The active ingredient is primarily used in the treatment of mild to moderate plaque psoriasis.

The drug Tazaroten is a retinoid that has receptor-selective and topical properties. It is a special type of retinoid belonging to a new pharmacological generation.

The active ingredient is primarily used in the treatment of mild to moderate plaque psoriasis. After ingestion through the skin, the substance is metabolized in a relatively short time to a metabolite called tazarotene acid. However, there is no great similarity in the structure to the vitamin A or other retinoids that have hitherto been used in therapy. These include, for example, acitretin, isotretinoin and etretinate.

Nevertheless, the drug tazarotene is counted to retinoids with a so-called ethyne structure. Basically, tazarotene is sensitive to oxygen and other oxidizing agents as well as light and alkaline substances.

Pharmacological action

The drug tazarotene works primarily by affecting the formation and growth of cells. In addition, the substance also has anti-inflammatory effects. However, the exact mechanism of action of tazarotene according to the current state of medical research is not yet completely known.

The drug Tazaroten joins the so-called Retinoic Acid Receptor and sets in motion a modification of gene expression. The active substance also influences the differentiation of cells. As part of the treatment is therefore important to ensure that patients avoid direct and intense UV radiation. Basically, the drug in Germany is both pharmacy and prescription.

Medical application & use

The drug Tazaroten is suitable for the treatment of various diseases, but it is mainly used for the treatment of psoriasis. For this purpose gel preparations with different concentrations of the active ingredient exist. These are intended for topical therapy of small-scale, mild to moderate psoriasis of the plaque type.

First, together with the attending physician, determine the individually appropriate concentration of the active ingredient in the gel. Gels with higher concentrations cause more irritation to the skin than lower doses. For example, reddened skin or itching are possible. However, the effect corresponding to the higher dose is stronger and more rapid.

Before applying the gel, make sure that the affected skin is dry. If the gel is applied after a shower, the skin should be thoroughly dried. In most cases, the Tazaroten gel is applied once a day before going to bed. It is important that only a thin layer is applied to the skin. It should also be ensured that only the psoriatic skin areas are wetted with the gel. This avoids irritation of healthy or inflamed skin.

The gel must not come in contact with the eyes, moreover, after the application of the drug, hand washing is necessary. If the affected patients suffer from psoriasis in the hands, special care must be taken that the gel does not get into the face or eyes. If this happens, immediately rinse the eyes with a large amount of cold water and, if necessary, consult a doctor.

Risks & Side Effects

As part of the treatment with the drug Tazaroten a variety of unwanted side effects and complaints are possible. These vary from patient to patient and vary depending on the individual case. The most common side effects are burning on the skin as well as reddened petals, itching and localized irritation.

In addition, rashes on the skin, scaling, contact dermatitis, pain and a worsening of psoriasis are other possible side effects. In addition, inflammation of the skin and dry skin may be present.

During treatment with a Tazarotene gel, various interactions with other agents should be considered. Thus, the waiver of drugs that irritate and dry out the skin is recommended. From a simultaneous application with Tazaroten is therefore foreseeable.

In addition, there are some contraindications in which the drug Tazaroten may not be used. These include, for example, known incompatibilities with the substance tazarotene as well as psoriasis exfoliativa and psoriasis pustulosa. Also, the drug should not be applied to the area of ​​the face or on the scalp.

Tazarotene therapy lasts for a maximum of twelve weeks, with no more than ten percent of the body surface being treated with the gel. During pregnancy and breast-feeding Tazarotene is not expected to be treated with the drug.

Following oral administration, the drug tazarotene has a teratogenic effect. In animal experiments, it has been shown that after dermal application changes have occurred in the skeleton of fetuses. If during treatment with the drug Tazaroten appropriate side effects or other symptoms, the doctor or in case of emergency, a pharmacist should be consulted immediately.