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Ailesbury Clinic Blog

No association between Roaccutane and suicide

A systematic review and meta-analysis of studies addressing depression risk when taking isotretinoin (Accutane) found no increased risk for depression.

  • Acne treatment appeared to ease symptoms of depression.

Why this matters

  • Acne is a common condition and isotretinoin is the most effective therapy for stubborn nodulocystic acne.
  • In 1998, the US Food and Drug Administration issued a warning with regard to isotretinoin and risk for depression, psychosis, suicide, and suicidal ideation.
  • Studies addressing this possible link have been mixed in their findings.

Study design

  • Systematic review and meta-analysis of 31 studies addressing depression in patients taking isotretinoin for acne.
  • Funding: None.

Key results

  • In 6 controlled studies included in the analysis, depression scores from baseline were not significantly different (and in fact, improved) in patients treated with either isotretinoin or an alternative therapy (standardized mean difference [SMD], −0.334; P=.058).
  • Mean depression scores decreased from baseline (SMD, −0.335; P<.001).


  • No randomized controlled trials included in the analysis.
  • High inter-study variability.

Huang YC, Cheng YC. Isotretinoin treatment for acne and risk of depression: A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2017 Mar 10 [Epub ahead of print]. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2016.12.028. PMID: 28291553

Ailesbury Dublin

David Lloyd Riverview,

1st Floor,

Beech Hill Road,
Donnybrook  Dublin 4.

Eircode DO4 AF10 (Google Map)

Tel:   (01)269 2255 / 2133                                             

Fax: (01) 218 0857


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Ailesbury Cork

Holbar House
East Village
Douglas, Cork. 

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Galway (021) 4835006

Fax: (01) 218 0857 

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Ailesbury Clinic is now opening monthly at Bellisimo Galway with Dr. Olga O' Driscoll MICGP. Dip. Aesthetic Medicine (right)  




Ailesbury Galway                   

Bellissimo Galway  

Galway Retail Park,

Headford Road, Galway

Eircode TH91 DN3P (Google Map)

Tel:   (01)269 2255 / 2133

Galway (091)568 555

Fax: (01) 218 0857


Specialists in Dermatology and Aesthetic Medicine. We perform minor surgery + skin cancer screen. VHI, Aviva, Laya and Irish Health accepted. Hstopathology is covered by private insurance and performed by dedicated skin histopathologists at St. Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin. Consultation €100  READ MORE 


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