Adapalene Gel or Cream

Adapalene gel/cream is used for the treatment of common acne (acne vulgaris). It belongs to a group of medications called retinoids. Adapalene works by reducing inflammation and unclogging blocked pores, thereby preventing the formation of small pimples, blackheads and whiteheads.

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What is this medication used for?

Adapalene gel/cream is used for the treatment of common acne (acne vulgaris). It belongs to a group of medications called retinoids. Adapalene works by reducing inflammation and unclogging blocked pores, thereby preventing the formation of small pimples, blackheads and whiteheads

Dosage and How to Use

Adults and Adolescents 12 years old and above

Adapalene gel/cream should be applied to the affected area once daily (in the evening just before bedtime) by applying a thin film of the gel/cream onto the skin.

Wash and dry the whole area to be treated before applying the gel/cream. If the skin is greasy, you may consider using a mild skin cleansing agent.

The amount of gel/cream you should use depends on the size of the affected area. Avoid using excessive amount of this product. Duration of use varies from person to person and depends on your acne condition when you start treatment. Your condition may worsen initially, but in general, you should see a distinct improvement after about 6-8 weeks of treatment. To get the best effect you may have to use this gel/cream for at least 3 months.

Do not share the product with others even if they have similar signs and symptoms. Wash your hands thoroughly after using the product and avoid getting the gel/cream into your eyes, mouth or nostrils. If it does come into contact with any of these areas, rinse it off immediately with plenty of water.

Do not apply to broken skin (cuts and abrasions) or eczematous skin. It should not be used for severe acne.

If you forget or miss an application, apply it as soon as you remember. If it is nearly time for the next application, skip the missed application and continue with next dose at the usual time.

Side Effects, Precautions, Contraindication

Before you use this medication

This gel/cream should be avoided if you have a known history of allergy to Adapalene, or any of the other listed ingredients in the product.

Adapalene should not be used during pregnancy. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, your doctor will decide whether you can still use Adapalene.

Inform your doctor and/or pharmacist if you are taking and/or using any other anti-acne therapy.

Interactions with other medications

Be sure to inform your doctor and/or pharmacist if you are taking, have recently taken or plan to take other medications, nutritional supplements or herbal products.

Side effects

Common side effects: burning, itching or abnormal redness of the skin at application site, scaling, pain, dryness and skin irritation at the application site.

Less common side effects: sun burns, sensitivity to sun. Avoid exposure to strong sunlight and artificial UV light. Use of sunscreen products and protective clothing over the treated area is recommended.

Rare side effects: swelling of the lips, and eyes, acne flares, skin discolouration.

Handling and Storage

Keep out of reach and sight of children.
Store in a cool dry place below 30°C.

When to Seek Further Medical Advice

Discontinue use of the product and inform your doctor and/or pharmacist immediately if you experience any allergic symptoms (e.g. rashes, itchiness, difficulty in breathing or eye swelling) or serious side effects due to this medication.

Consult a doctor if you do not observe improvement in 6-8 weeks or if your condition worsens.

Just Ask! Your Pharmacist - Know Your Medicine, Get It Right! 

Information updated 31st March 2016
Prepared by the Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore (www.pss.org.sg)

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Adapalene Gel or Cream

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