Tazorac Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Tazorac (tazarotene) Gel is used to treat plaque psoriasis (psoriasis with scaly patches) and to treat facial acne. The Avage brand of tazarotene cream is used to reduce the appearance of fine wrinkles on the face, mottled light and dark skin patches on the face, and benign facial lentigines (noncancerous freckles). It is a compound similar to vitamin A. Common side effects include itching, redness, irritation, burning/stinging, scaling, dry skin, or pain at application site.
To treat psoriasis, the recommended starting dose of Tazorac is 0.05% gel, with strength increased to 0.1% if tolerated and indicated. Apply a dose of Tazorac Gel once a day, in the evening, to psoriatic lesions, using enough (2 mg/cm²) to cover only the lesion with a thin film to no more than 20% of body surface area. To treat acne, after cleansing the face, apply a thin film dose of Tazorac Gel 0.1% (2 mg/cm²) once a day, in the evening, to the skin where acne lesions appear. Tazorac may interact with other topical products that have a drying effect, diuretics, antibiotics, or phenothiazines. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Tazorac must not be used during pregnancy. It may harm a fetus. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, inform your doctor. Women should have a negative pregnancy test within 2 weeks of starting this medication and also start this medication during their normal period. It is recommended that men and women using this medication use two forms of birth control (e.g., condoms and birth control pills) while taking this medication; consult your doctor. It is unknown if this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.
Our Tazorac (tazarotene) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What is Patient Information in Detail?
Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.
Tazorac in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects
Serious side effects are not likely to occur. Stop using tazarotene topical and seek emergency medical attention if you experience an allergic reaction (shortness of breath; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, face, or tongue; or hives).
You may experience some skin burning, warmth, stinging, tingling, itching, redness, swelling, dryness, peeling, or irritation while using tazarotene topical. If these side effects are excessive, talk to your doctor. You may need a lower dose or less frequent applications of tazarotene topical.
Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Tazorac (Tazarotene Gel) »
What is Patient Information Overview?
A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.
Tazorac Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: severe redness/irritation/peeling at application site.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Read the entire patient information overview for Tazorac (Tazarotene Gel)»
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Tazorac FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
In human dermal safety studies, tazarotene 0.05% and 0.1% gels did not induce allergic contact sensitization, phototoxicity or photoallergy.
The most frequent adverse events reported with TAZORAC® (tazarotene gel) Gel 0.05% and 0.1% were limited to the skin. Those occurring in 10 to 30% of patients, in descending order, included pruritus, burning/stinging, erythema, worsening of psoriasis, irritation, and skin pain. Events occurring in 1 to 10% of patients included rash, desquamation, irritant contact dermatitis, skin inflammation, fissuring, bleeding, and dry skin. Increases in “psoriasis worsening” and “sun-induced erythema” were noted in some patients over the 4th to 12th months as compared to the first three months of a 1 year study. In general, the incidence of adverse events with TAZORAC® (tazarotene gel) Gel 0.05% was 2 to 5% lower than that seen with TAZORAC® (tazarotene gel) Gel 0.1%.
The most frequent adverse events reported with TAZORAC® (tazarotene gel) Gel 0.1% in the treatment of acne occurring in 10 to 30% of patients, in descending order, included desquamation, burning/stinging, dry skin, erythema and pruritus. Events occurring in 1 to 10% of patients included irritation, skin pain, fissuring, localized edema and skin discoloration.
The following adverse reactions have been identified during postmarketing use of TAZORAC® (tazarotene gel) Gel 0.05% and 0.1% in clinical practice. Because they are reported voluntarily from a population of unknown size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to TAZORAC® (tazarotene gel) Gel. The reactions include: blister, rash, skin discoloration (including skin hyperpigmentation or skin hypopigmentation), and pain.
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Tazorac (Tazarotene Gel) »
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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