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In Brief: Retin-A and stretch marks

This article was originally published in The Rose Sheet

Executive Summary

Retin-A and stretch marks: Study sponsored by J&J published in the May issue of the American Medical Association's Archives of Dermatology concludes that "topical application of tretinoin significantly improves the clinical appearance of early, active stretch marks." The study, conducted by Sewon Kang, MD, University of Michigan Medical Center Department of Dermatology, et al., examined the effects of .1% tretinoin cream on 10 subjects compared to 12 subjects, who received a placebo treatment. After six months, eight Retin-A patients "had marked improvement," with stretch mark length decreases of 14% and width decreases of 8% versus increases in length and width of 10% and 24%, respectively for the placebo group. Only one placebo patient showed improvement, the study states. Kang et al. noted in the study that "the processes that are responsible for the clinical improvement remain unknown." Another University of Michigan study focusing on Retin-A as a treatment for photo-aged skin formed the basis of an off-label promotion campaign for the acne treatment that prompted an FDA/Department of Justice investigation of J&J ("The Rose Sheet" Jan. 16, 1995, p. 1)...
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