Clinical Neuroscience

Mid-term oral isotretinoin therapy causes a predominantly sensory demyelinating neuropathy

ALTUN Yasar1, INAN Esra2

MAY 30, 2019

Clinical Neuroscience - 2019;72(05-06)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.18071/isz.72.0159

Aim - The purpose of this prospective study was to investigate whether mid-term treatment with oral isotretinoin may impact peripheral nerve function. Methods - In this study, we included 28 patients with no apparent neurological or neurophysiological findings. The patients received treatment with oral isotretinoin for papulopustular or nodulocystic acne. The patients with normal findings in the first examination were given 1 mg/kg/day oral isotretinoin. Neurological examinations and electroneurographic studies were performed before and 6 months after the onset of isotretinoin treatment. Results - Clinical examinations and electroneurographic evaluations prior to treatment revealed no abnormalities in any of the patients. However, 20 patients (72%) displayed one or more abnormal values in the tested parameters after treatment. Although the mean amplitudes of compound muscle action potential of the ulnar and median nerves did not vary, significant decreases were observed in the mean sensory conduction velocities of median, ulnar, sural, medial plantar, medial dorsal cutaneous, and dorsal sural nerves 6 months after the onset of treatment. Conclusion - Systemic use of isotretinoin may cause electroneurographic changes. Probable electroneurographic alterations may be detected at a much earlier period via dorsal sural nerve tracing when electrophysiological methods used in routine clinical practice cannot detect these changes.

AFFILIATIONS

  1. Department of Neurology, Medical Faculty of Adiyaman University, Adiyaman, Turkey
  2. Department of Dermatology, Medical Faculty of Adiyaman University, Adiyaman, Turkey

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