It is very important that you take acitretin only as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. To do so may increase the chance of side effects.
Acitretin comes with a patient information form and medication guide. It is very important that you read and understand this information. Be sure to follow these instructions carefully and ask your doctor if you have any questions. You will be asked to sign a consent form before you starting taking this medicine to show that you understand the instructions.
You will be given information about the Do Your P.A.R.T. program, which is also called the Pregnancy Prevention Actively Required During and After Treatment program. This is important information about how to prevent pregnancy while you are using this medicine. Ask your doctor about this program if you have any questions.
It is best to take acitretin with a main meal.
For women—This medicine may cause birth defects. To make sure that you are not pregnant before beginning treatment, your doctor will ask you to:
- Use two effective forms of birth control (contraception) together for at least 1 month before beginning treatment.
- Report when your menstrual periods are normal.
- Take a pregnancy test within 1 week before beginning treatment to make sure you are not pregnant.
- Begin your acitretin treatment on Day 2 or Day 3 of your next menstrual period.
- Sign a paper to show that you understand the importance of not becoming pregnant for at least 2 to 3 years after you stop taking this medicine.
Women who are able to bear children must use two effective forms of birth control together for at least 2 to 3 years after they stop taking acitretin to help prevent an unplanned pregnancy. If you do not think this is reasonable or feel like you can not do this, talk to your doctor before you start taking this medicine.
You must not share this medicine with anyone else because of the risk for birth defects and other serious side effects.
The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For oral dosage form (capsules):
- For severe psoriasis:
- Adults—25 to 50 milligrams (mg) once a day as a single dose. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed.
- Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For severe psoriasis:
If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.