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Retinoid Gels May Help Keep Acne Away

Gels Might Be an Alternative to Oral Antibiotics for Clear Skin Maintenance

What Does 'Maintenance' Mean?

The journal editorial -- and the studies -- point out that "maintenance" hasn't been officially defined in acne treatment. Without an agreed-upon benchmark, it can be hard to gauge success.

Future studies should test benzoyl peroxide skin treatments (which are less costly than retinoids) for maintenance therapy, writes editorialist Lee Zane, MD, MAS. Zane works in the dermatology department of the University of California, San Francisco.

As for the Differin and Tazorac studies, Zane's editorial states that "although admittedly not definitive, these studies offer promising data for the role of retinoids in acne maintenance therapy, and they invite us to give careful consideration to how such therapy should be studied in the future."

In his editorial, Zane writes that it is "truly a step in the right direction" to be looking for therapeutic options to long-term antibiotic therapy for acne patients.

The most common adverse side effects reported for the gels included itching for the Differin study and burning, peeling, and redness for the Tazorac study.

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