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Using Roaccutane in Internet Challenges Has Health Risks


With the popularization of the TikTok social network, viral challenges have become a popular pastime among children and teens, while raising concerns for parents and entities. In this sense, the new “fever” in the Internet world is the use of Roakutan with the aim of sharpening the nose shown in the “before and after” videos.


The treatment in question is isotretinoin , a substance derived from vitamin A, which is responsible for accelerating cell renewal and causing atrophy of the sebaceous glands. Therefore, it is commonly used to treat severe forms of acne and acne that are resistant to previous treatments, such as topical ointments.


On social media, the hashtags calling for the Roacutan Challenge (#roaccutancheck and #roacutanchallenge) have over 29 million views. However, this online mobilization has many experts on alert, as misusing the drug can pose a cascade of health risks.


In a note released by the Brazilian Society of Dermatology (SBD) on Wednesday (8), the entity reiterated that there are no research or scientific studies to date that recognize the safety and efficacy of using Roaccutane to change the shape of the nose.


SBD also confirms that inappropriate use of isotretinoin without a prescription and proper medical supervision leaves a person vulnerable to many serious side effects – such as high cholesterol, liver damage and fetal malformation in the case of a pregnant woman.


“For oral isotretinoin use, a prescription is mandatory. SBD-related dermatologists advise against this type of indication. Caution should be exercised when this drug is used by means other than a dermatologist’s prescription,” adds the device.


Roaccutane Risks and Precautions


The use of isotretinoin assumes several precautions before use, such as tests to check liver function and cholesterol and triglyceride levels. In addition to severe acne, it is sometimes prescribed for cases of nasal rosacea or other conditions that require aesthetic improvement in the pores. However, in these cases, the specified amount is much smaller.


Moreover, Roaccutane is a teratogenic drug, i.e. it can cause serious physical defects in the fetus, when pregnancy occurs while using it or up to a month after stopping treatment, regardless of the amount or duration of treatment.


According to data from the SBD, the risk of having a child with a congenital malformation due to the effect of Roaccutane is up to 30%. There is also a high risk of miscarriage. Thus, even for women with a history of infertility or who have reported not having sexual activity, the use of effective contraception is necessary while isotretinoin is administered.


Medicines such as Roaccutane should only be used when prescribed by a doctor . When the patient is a teenager, parents or guardians should be aware of the treatment. In addition, they should be aware of the dangers that “maniacs” exposed on social networks can pose to the health of their children.

Because of the pandemic, online challenges have increased dramatically, so it is necessary to pay attention to children’s behavior and identify potential signs to avoid more serious risks.

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