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Isotretinoin Drug May Cause Severe Birth Defects

What is the best way to reduce birth defects caused by the acne drug Isotretinoin? – Asks a debate article in PloS Medicine//.

Isotretinoin is a very effective treatment for severe acne - a condition, which can be physically, emotionally, and socially disabling. But the drug can also cause severe birth defects if pregnant women take it.

What is the best way to prevent pregnant women from taking the drug, and to prevent women taking it from getting pregnant? The debate article considers the pros and cons of a new Internet-based system, called iPLEDGE (, which tries to ensure that the drug is dispensed only when there is documentary proof that the patient is not pregnant and is using two forms of birth control.


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