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(bex er' oh teen)
- Wash your hands.
- If you are using a new tube of bexarotene gel, remove the cap and check that the opening of the tube is covered with a metal safety seal. Do not use the tube if you do not see the safety seal or if the seal has been punctured. If you do see the safety seal, turn the cap upside down and use the sharp point to puncture the seal.
- Use a clean finger to apply a generous layer of gel to the area to be treated only. Be careful not to get any gel on the healthy skin around the affected area. Do not rub the gel into the skin. You should be able to see some gel on the affected area after you are finished applying it.
- Do not cover the treated area with a tight bandage or dressing unless you were told to do so by your doctor.
- Wipe the finger that you used to apply the gel with a tissue and throw the tissue away. Wash your hands with soap and water.
- Allow the gel to dry for 5-10 minutes before covering with loose clothing. Do not wear tight clothing over the affected area.
Before using topical bexarotene,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to bexarotene; any other retinoid such as acitretin (Soriatane), etretinate (Tegison), isotretinoin (Accutane), or tretinoin (Vesanoid); or any other medications.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: certain antifungals such as ketoconazole (Nizoral) and itraconazole (Sporanox);erythromycin (E.E.S., E-Mycin, Erythrocin); gemfibrozil (Lopid); other medications or products that are applied to the skin; and vitamin A (in multivitamins). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects. Many other medications may also interact with topical bexarotene, so be sure to tell your doctor about all the medications you are taking, even those that do not appear on this list.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney or liver disease.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Topical bexarotene may cause severe birth defects, so you will need to take precautions to prevent pregnancy during and shortly after your treatment. You will begin your treatment on the second or third day of your menstrual period, and you will need to have negative pregnancy tests within one week of the start of your treatment and once a month after your treatment. You must use 2 acceptable forms of birth control during your treatment and for one month after your treatment. If you become pregnant during your treatment with topical bexarotene, call your doctor immediately.
- tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding.
- if you are male and have a partner who is pregnant or can become pregnant, talk to your doctor about precautions you should take during your treatment. Call your doctor immediately if your partner becomes pregnant while you are using topical bexarotene.
- plan to avoid unnecessary or prolonged exposure to sunlight and sunlamps and to wear protective clothing, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Topical bexarotene may make your skin sensitive to sunlight.
- do not use insect repellants or other products containing DEET during your treatment with topical bexarotene.
- do not scratch the affected areas during your treatment with topical bexarotene.
- redness, burning, irritation, or scaling of the skin
- swelling of the arms, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
- sore throat, fever, chills, or other signs of infection
- swollen glands