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J Drugs Dermatol. 2012 Dec;11(12):1410-4.

Clindamycin phosphate 1.2% and tretinoin 0.025% gel for rosacea: summary of a placebo-controlled, double-blind trial.

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Spencer Dermatology, St. Petersburg, FL, USA.


Rosacea is a common, chronic, and poorly understood dermatological condition characterized by an inflammatory component composed of papules and pustules and a vascular component composed of flushing and erythema. Current treatment options include topical, systemic, and light-based methods, each of which focuses on either the inflammatory or the vascular component. Retinoids are not routinely indicated as treatment because of the common conception that they would be too inflammatory for the sensitive rosacea patient. However, photodamage may play a role in rosacea and tretinoin is well-known to repair photodamage. Thirty rosacea subjects were enrolled to assess their response to the use of clindamycin phosphate 1.2% and tretinoin 0.025% gel (ZIANA; Medicis Pharmaceutical Corporation, Scottsdale, AZ) for a period of 12 weeks. The results showed a dramatic decrease in pustules and papules without any significant inflammation or overall intolerance. No improvement in facial redness was achieved. Based on our results, more investigation of topical retinoids for rosacea treatment is prudent.

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