This medication is used to treat a certain skin condition (seborrheic dermatitis). In this condition, it is believed that a fungus (Malassezia furfur) infects the skin, resulting in dry, flaky skin (scaling) on the scalp, face, ears, chest, or upper back. Ketoconazole is an azole antifungal drug that works by stopping the growth of fungus.
How to use ketoconazole topical
If the can is warm or the foam is runny, place the can under cool running water for a few minutes before using.
Use this medication on the skin only. Clean and thoroughly dry the area to be treated. To keep the medication from melting on your fingers, wash your hands with cold water and dry thoroughly before applying. Hold the can upright. Do not spray the medication directly on the affected area or on your hands. Instead, spray the medication into the cap of the can or some other cool, clean surface. Using your fingertips, pick up the medication and gently and thoroughly rub into the affected areas, usually 2 times daily for 4 weeks or as directed by your doctor. If treating the scalp, part your hair 1 section at a time, and apply the medication directly to the affected scalp area, not the hair.
Wash your hands after applying the medication.
Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same times each day.
Tell your doctor if your condition worsens or does not improve after 4 weeks of treatment.
Burning or irritation at the application site may occur. If either of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Remember that this medication has been prescribed because your doctor has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
In the US - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before using ketoconazole, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other azole antifungals (such as clotrimazole, miconazole); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history.
This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Limit your time in the sun. Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. Tell your doctor right away if you get sunburned or have skin blisters/redness.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use.
Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
This medicine may be harmful if swallowed. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Use your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature between 68-77 degrees F (20-25 degrees C) away from light and heat. Do not store in the refrigerator or freezer. This product is flammable. Do not store or use near an open flame. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.