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I’ve been suffering with acne for a very long time. I’ve done a Roaccutane course 2 years ago and I had really bad side effects. It took me months to recover. 

My dermatologist now gave me a topical cream that has 1% Retinol in it. I’m actually a little bit scared to start is, because I don’t know if Retinol goes in your blood and because it’s also a vitamin A could cause the same side effects as Roaccutane did. 

So my question is: does anyone know if over the counter Retinol (not Tretinoin) goes in your bloodstream or there are any risks of side effects? I don’t want to do any further damage. 


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There are some concerns that over the very long term it could cause lower levels of Vitamin A in your body, but I have never heard of any non-surface side effects from use. It's extremely commonly used by many people for anti-aging also, as long term use can reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

There have been many medical studies done on retinol; it's quite comprehensively covered in literature if you want to read further!

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