Drug Information


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Brand Names: U.S.

  • Differin®
Brand Names: Canada

  • Differin®;
  • Differin® XP
Pharmacologic Category

  • Acne Products;
  • Topical Skin Product, Acne
Dosing: AdultAcne: Topical: Apply once daily before bedtime; results appear after 8-12 weeks of therapy.

Dosing: PediatricChildren >12 years: Refer to adult dosing.

Dosing: GeriatricRefer to adult dosing.

Dosage Forms: U.S.Excipient information presented when available (limited, particularly for generics); consult specific product labeling.

Cream, topical: 0.1% (45 g)

Differin®: 0.1% (45 g)

Gel, topical: 0.1% (45 g)

Differin®: 0.1% (45 g); 0.3% (45 g) [ethanol free]

Generic Equivalent Available: U.S.Yes

UseTreatment of acne vulgaris

Adverse Reactions Significant>10%: Dermatologic: Erythema, scaling, dryness, pruritus, burning, pruritus or burning immediately after application

<1% (Limited to important or life-threatening): Acne flares, conjunctivitis, contact dermatitis, dermatitis, eczema, eyelid edema, skin discoloration, skin irritation, stinging, sunburn, rash (topical cream)

Warnings/PrecautionsConcerns related to adverse effects:

• Photosensitivity: Use is associated with increased susceptibility/sensitivity to UV light; avoid sunlamps or excessive sunlight exposure. Daily sunscreen use and other protective measures recommended.

• Skin irritation: Certain cutaneous signs and symptoms such as erythema, dryness, scaling, burning, or pruritus may occur during treatment; these are most likely to occur during the first 2-4 weeks and will usually lessen with continued use.

Disease-related concerns:

• Eczema: Use with caution in patients with eczema.

Special populations:

• Pediatrics: Safety and efficacy have not been established in children <12 years of age.

Other warnings/precautions:

• Appropriate use: For external use only; avoid contact with abraded skin, mucous membranes, eyes, mouth, angles of the nose.

Drug Interactions

Contraceptives (Progestins): Retinoic Acid Derivatives may diminish the therapeutic effect of Contraceptives (Progestins). Retinoic Acid Derivatives may decrease the serum concentration of Contraceptives (Progestins). Management: Two forms of effective contraception should be used in patients receiving retinoic acid derivatives. Particularly, microdosed progesterone-only preparations may be inadequately effective. Risk D: Consider therapy modification

Porfimer: Photosensitizing Agents may enhance the photosensitizing effect of Porfimer. Risk C: Monitor therapy

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Vitamin A: May enhance the adverse/toxic effect of Retinoid-like Compounds. Risk D: Consider therapy modification

Pregnancy Risk FactorPregnancy Implications

There are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Use only if benefit outweighs the potential risk to fetus.

LactationExcretion in breast milk unknown/use caution

Pricing: U.S. (www.drugstore.com)Cream (Differin)

0.1% (45): $305.99

Gel (Differin)

0.1% (45): $308.85

0.3% (45): $255.98

International Brand Names

  • Aclear (HK);
  • Aclene (KP);
  • Acnelene (PK);
  • Acure (TW);
  • Adaferin (CR, DO, GR, GT, HN, IN, MX, NI, PA, SV);
  • Adaferin Gel (IL);
  • Beautyface (TW);
  • Butipalen (KP);
  • Differin (AR, AU, BR, CL, CN, CO, EE, FI, HK, KP, MY, NL, NO, NZ, PE, PH, PL, PT, PY, RU, SG, TH, TR, TW, UY, VE, ZA);
  • Differin Gel (AT, BE, CH, DE, GB, IE, IL, IT, SE);
  • Differine (CZ, ES, FR);
  • Doulishu (TW);
  • Easy Acne (TW);
  • Evalen (ID);
  • Klenzit (PH);
  • Panalene (AR);
  • Redap (DK);
  • Rozac (IN);
  • T3ADA (MY);
  • Tifforly Gel (HK)
SEE MORE:  Acetic acid
Mechanism of ActionRetinoid-like compound which is a modulator of cellular differentiation, keratinization, and inflammatory processes, all of which represent important features in the pathology of acne vulgaris

Pharmacodynamics/KineticsAbsorption: Topical: Minimal

Excretion: Bile