[Use of systemic retinoids in dermatology].Wien Klin Wochenschr. 1983 Dec 09; 95(23):817-22.WK
The naturally occurring retinoids (vitamin A alcohol = retinol and all-trans-retinoic acid) have been largely replaced by synthetic retinoids in recent years as systemic drugs for use in dermatology. At the present time, two synthetic retinoids are commercially available: etretinate (Tigason) and isotretinoin (Accutane). These compounds-which have a more favourable therapeutic index than the naturally occurring retinoids-ushered in a new era of dermatological therapy by their potent antikeratinizing, antiseborrhoeic (only isotretinoin) and antineoplastic action. The broadest indications for the use of these retinoids are psoriasis (etretinate) and cystic acne (isotretinoin), whereas the most dramatic effects are encountered in a number of severe ichthyosiform disorders. Another important, although at present not clearly defined role of the retinoids is in the prophylaxis of skin tumours.