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South Med J. 2006 Sep;99(9):992-4.

An adolescent with abdominal pain taking isotretinoin for severe acne.

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Department of Pediatrics, Fort Sam Houston, 3851 Roger Brooke Drive, Houston, TX 78234, USA.


A 19-year-old female patient is presented who was taking isotretinoin for severe, nodulocystic acne. She subsequently developed abdominal pain during the course of treatment, thought to be related to an adverse reaction to the medication. A concerning side effect of isotretinoin is hypertriglyceridemia, which may be a cause of pancreatitis. A lipase level was determined to be elevated in this case. The patient was diagnosed with acute pancreatitis and the offending agent was discontinued. Clinicians need to be aware of the side effects when prescribing isotretinoin for recalcitrant acne.

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