Tazarotene is a synthetic retinoid that mediates cell differentiation and proliferation [19]. Tazarotene, a pro-drug of tazarotenic acid, has recently been proven effective as a treatment for photodamaged skin [11].

In a 1-year evaluation of 563 patients with facial photodamage, 0.1% tazarotene cream was applied to one half of their faces and vehicle cream to the other half in a double-blinded study for 24 weeks [20]. Patients then continued treatment with tazarotene for an additional 28 weeks. At week 24, compared with the vehicle cream, tazarotene treatment was associated with a significantly greater occurrence of treatment success (defined as at least 50% global improvement), and at least a one-grade improvement in fine wrinkling, pore size, mottled hyperpigmentation, lentigines, elastosis, irregular depigmentation, roughness, and the overall assessment of photodamage. Moreover, Kang et al. also found that tazarotene improved mottled pigmentation and fine wrinkles and that these improvements were comparable to those seen with tretinoin cream [11].

In general, retinoids are also well tolerated in darker skin types; however, retinoid dermatitis may cause post-inflammatory hyperpigmenta-tion. In addition, progressive hyperpigmenta-

tion can occur with retinoids without any clinical evidence of irritation.

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