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World J Psychiatr. Jun 22, 2015; 5(2): 222-227
Published online Jun 22, 2015. doi: 10.5498/wjp.v5.i2.222
Inter-relationships between isotretinoin treatment and psychiatric disorders: Depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, psychosis and suicide risks
Maude Ludot, Stephane Mouchabac, Florian Ferreri
Maude Ludot, Stephane Mouchabac, Florian Ferreri, Psychiatry and Medical Psychology Department, Hospital Saint-Antoine, Univ Paris 06, F-75012 Paris, France
Author contributions: All authors contributed equally to this work.
Conflict-of-interest: None.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Correspondence to: Florian Ferreri, MD, PhD, Psychiatry and Medical Psychology Department, Hospital Saint-Antoine, Univ Paris 06, Service de psychiatrie, 184 rue du faubourg Saint-Antoine, F-75012 Paris, France.
Telephone: +33-149-282635 Fax: +33-149-282010
Received: November 29, 2014
Peer-review started: Novmber 29, 2014
First decision: December 26, 2014
Revised: February 14, 2015
Accepted: May 5, 2015
Article in press: May 6, 2015
Published online: June 22, 2015
Core Tip

Core tip: Isotretinoin is a treatment for severe acne. The prescription of this drug has been controversial ever since its initial marketing in 1982. This paper aims to specify the links between the drug and psychiatric disorders such as depression, suicide, anxiety, bipolar disorder and psychosis. Many studies demonstrated an increased risk of depression, attempted suicide and suicide following isotretinoin treatment. Several studies showed that patients with bipolar disorder had an increased risk for a clinical exacerbation of symptoms undergoing treatment with isotretinoin. A few studies also seem to suggest a possible link between isotretinoin and psychosis. From this review, we propose guidelines for isotretinoin prescription to healthcare professionals.