Amnesteem

Last reviewed on RxList: 5/26/2021
Amnesteem Side Effects Center

Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

What Is Amnesteem?

Amnesteem (isotretinoin capsules) is a retinoid indicated for the treatment of severe recalcitrant nodular acne.

What Are Side Effects of Amnesteem?

Common side effects of Amnesteem include:

Tell your doctor if you have serious side effects of Amnesteem including:

  • increased brain pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, seizures, or stroke);
  • a rash with a fever,
  • blisters on legs, arms or face and/or sores in your mouth, throat, nose, eyes, or if your skin begins to peel;
  • severe stomach, chest, or bowel pain;
  • trouble swallowing or painful swallowing,
  • new or worsening heartburn,
  • diarrhea,
  • rectal bleeding,
  • yellowing of your skin or eyes,
  • dark urine,
  • back pain,
  • joint pain,
  • broken bones,
  • hearing problems,
  • vision problems, and
  • blood sugar problems.

Dosage for Amnesteem

The recommended dosage range for Amnesteem is 0.5 to 1 mg/kg/day given in two divided doses with food for 15 to 20 weeks.

What Drugs, Substances, or Supplements Interact with Amnesteem?

Amnesteem may interact with vitamin A, tetracycline antibiotics, hormonal contraceptives, St. John's Wort, phenytoin, and corticosteroids. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use.

Amnesteem During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding

Amnesteem is not recommended for use during pregnancy; it may cause birth defects. Women must receive a negative pregnancy test before taking Amnesteem, and patients will be counseled to avoid pregnancy by using two forms of contraception simultaneously and continuously one month before, during and one month after Amnesteem therapy, unless the patient commits to continuous abstinence. It is unknown if Amnesteem passes into breast milk. Because of the potential for unwanted effects on nursing infants, breastfeeding is not recommended while using Amnesteem and for one month after stopping treatment.

Additional Information

Our Amnesteem (isotretinoin capsules) 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.

SLIDESHOW

Skin Health: 15 Tips for Clear Skin See Slideshow
Amnesteem Consumer Information

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Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash with blistering and peeling).

Stop using isotretinoin and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • problems with your vision or hearing;
  • muscle or joint pain, bone pain, back pain;
  • increased thirst, increased urination;
  • hallucinations, (see or hearing things that are not real);
  • symptoms of depression--unusual mood changes, crying spells, feelings of low self-worth, loss of interest in things you once enjoyed, new sleep problems, thoughts about hurting yourself;
  • signs of liver or pancreas problems--loss of appetite, upper stomach pain (that may spread to your back), nausea or vomiting, fast heart rate, dark urine, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
  • severe stomach problems--severe stomach or chest pain, pain when swallowing, heartburn, diarrhea, rectal bleeding, bloody or tarry stools; or
  • increased pressure inside the skull--severe headaches, ringing in your ears, dizziness, nausea, vision problems, pain behind your eyes.

Common side effects may include:

  • dryness of your skin, lips, eyes, or nose (you may have nosebleeds);
  • vision problems;
  • headache, back pain, joint pain, muscle problems;
  • skin reactions; or
  • cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat.

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.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Amnesteem (Isotretinoin)

QUESTION

Acne is the result of an allergy. See Answer
Amnesteem Professional Information

SIDE EFFECTS

Clinical Trials And Post-marketing Surveillance

The adverse reactions listed below reflect the experience from investigational studies of Amnesteem, and the post-marketing experience. The relationship of some of these events to Amnesteem therapy is unknown. Many of the side effects and adverse reactions seen in patients receiving Amnesteem are similar to those described in patients taking very high doses of vitamin A (dryness of the skin and mucous membranes, e.g., of the lips, nasal passage and eyes).

Dose Relationship

Cheilitis and hypertriglyceridemia are usually dose related. Most adverse reactions reported in clinical trials were reversible when therapy was discontinued; however, some persisted after cessation of therapy (see WARNINGS and ADVERSE REACTIONS).

Body as a Whole: allergic reactions, including vasculitis, systemic hypersensitivity (see PRECAUTIONS: Hypersensitivity), edema, fatigue, lymphadenopathy, weight loss

Cardiovascular: palpitation, tachycardia, vascular thrombotic disease, stroke

Endocrine/Metabolic: hypertriglyceridemia (see WARNINGS: Lipids), alterations in blood sugar levels (see PRECAUTIONS: Laboratory Tests)

Gastrointestinal: inflammatory bowel disease (see WARNINGS: Inflammatory Bowel Disease), hepatitis (see WARNINGS: Hepatotoxicity), pancreatitis (see WARNINGS: Lipids), bleeding and inflammation of the gums, colitis, esophagitis/esophageal ulceration, ileitis, nausea, other nonspecific gastrointestinal symptoms

Hematologic: allergic reactions (see PRECAUTIONS: Hypersensitivity), anemia, thrombocytopenia, neutropenia, rare reports of agranulocytosis (see PATIENT INFORMATION). See PRECAUTIONS: Laboratory Tests for other hematological parameters

Musculoskeletal: skeletal hyperostosis, calcification of tendons and ligaments, premature epiphyseal closure, decreases in bone mineral density (see WARNINGS: Skeletal), musculoskeletal symptoms (sometimes severe) including back pain, myalgia, and arthralgia (see PATIENT INFORMATION), transient pain in the chest (see PATIENT INFORMATION), arthritis, tendonitis, other types of bone abnormalities, elevations of CPK/rare reports of rhabdomyolysis (see PRECAUTIONS: Laboratory Tests)

Neurological: pseudotumor cerebri (see WARNINGS: Pseudotumor Cerebri), dizziness, drowsiness, headache, insomnia, lethargy, malaise, nervousness, paresthesias, seizures, stroke, syncope, weakness

Psychiatric: suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, suicide, depression, psychosis, aggression, violent behaviors (see WARNINGS: Psychiatric Disorders), emotional instability

Of the patients reporting depression, some reported that the depression subsided with discontinuation of therapy and recurred with reinstitution of therapy.

Reproductive System: abnormal menses

Respiratory: bronchospasms (with or without a history of asthma), respiratory infection, voice alteration

Skin and Appendages : acne fulminans, alopecia (which in some cases persists), bruising, cheilitis (dry lips), dry mouth, dry nose, dry skin, epistaxis, eruptive xanthomas,7 erythema multiforme, flushing, fragility of skin, hair abnormalities, hirsutism, hyperpigmentation and hypopigmentation, infections (including disseminated herpes simplex), nail dystrophy, paronychia, peeling of palms and soles, photoallergic/photosensitizing reactions, pruritus, pyogenic granuloma, rash (including facial erythema, seborrhea, and eczema), Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, sunburn susceptibility increased, sweating, toxic epidermal necrolysis, urticaria, vasculitis (including Wegener's granulomatosis; see PRECAUTIONS: Hypersensitivity) abnormal wound healing (delayed healing or exuberant granulation tissue with crusting; see PATIENT INFORMATION)

Special Senses : Hearing: hearing impairment (see WARNINGS: Hearing Impairment), tinnitus

Vision: corneal opacities (see WARNINGS: Corneal Opacities), decreased night vision which may persist (see WARNINGS: Decreased Night Vision), cataracts, color vision disorder, conjunctivitis, dry eyes, eyelid inflammation, keratitis, optic neuritis, photophobia, visual disturbances

Urinary System: glomerulonephritis (see PRECAUTIONS: Hypersensitivity), nonspecific urogenital findings (see PRECAUTIONS: Laboratory Tests for other urological parameters)

Laboratory

Elevation of plasma triglycerides (see WARNINGS: Lipids), decrease in serum high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels, elevations of serum cholesterol during treatment

Increased alkaline phosphatase, SGOT (AST), SGPT (ALT), GGTP or LDH (see WARNINGS: Hepatotoxicity)

Elevation of fasting blood sugar, elevations of CPK (see PRECAUTIONS: Laboratory Tests), hyperuricemia

Decreases in red blood cell parameters, decreases in white blood cell counts (including severe neutropenia and rare reports of agranulocytosis; see PATIENT INFORMATION), elevated sedimentation rates, elevated platelet counts, thrombocytopenia

White cells in the urine, proteinuria, microscopic or gross hematuria

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Amnesteem (Isotretinoin)

© Amnesteem Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Amnesteem Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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