About topical fluticasone
|Type of medicine||Potent topical corticosteroid|
|Used for||Inflammatory skin conditions such as severe eczema and dermatitis|
|Also called||Fluticasone propionate
|Available as||Cream and ointment|
Fluticasone is a potent topical corticosteroid. When applied to the skin, fluticasone reduces swelling, itching and redness by preventing the release of chemicals that cause these symptoms. Fluticasone is not a cure for your condition, but it will help relieve the symptoms.
Before using topical fluticasone
Before using fluticasone make sure your doctor or pharmacist knows:
- If you are pregnant, trying for a baby or breast-feeding.
- If you have any areas of infected skin.
- If you have ever had an allergic reaction to this or any other skin preparation.
How to use topical fluticasone
- Before starting this treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet.
- You only need to use a small amount of this preparation. It should be applied thinly to the affected areas only and massaged gently into the skin until it disappears.
- Do not use fluticasone on broken or infected skin including cold sores, acne, rosacea, chickenpox, ringworm, thrush or athlete's foot.
- Never apply more than the quantity advised by your doctor.
- One fingertip unit (a line from the tip of an adult index finger to the first crease) is enough to cover an area twice the size of an adult hand.
- Your doctor will tell you how often to apply fluticasone. It must not be applied more than twice a day, and once a day is often sufficient.
- If you are using more than one topical corticosteroid, make sure you know when and where to use each one. If you are unsure, check with your doctor or ask your pharmacist for further advice.
- If you are using fluticasone for psoriasis, it may be used to treat small areas such as the soles of the feet and palms of the hands, but should not be used for larger areas as this can cause your symptoms to flare up afterwards. Make sure you follow your doctor's instructions carefully.
- Fluticasone should not be used in children except under the advice of a specialist.
Getting the most from your treatment
- If you see no improvement in your symptoms after two weeks, see your doctor again.
- Do not use this preparation on your face unless you have been directed to do so by your doctor.
- Do not allow this preparation to come into contact with your eyes, mouth, vagina or the inside of your nose.
- Potent corticosteroids should not be used for long periods of time or on large areas of the body, particularly in children.
- Unless advised to do so by your doctor, do not apply a bandage or dressing to the area being treated as this will increase absorption of the preparation and increase side-effects.
- Do not use this preparation under a nappy in children.
Can topical fluticasone cause problems?
Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. If used correctly fluticasone does not usually cause problems. Occasionally some people may experience burning or irritation of the skin. If you use the preparation more than you should, it can cause thinning of the skin, changes in skin colour or an increased growth of hair in the areas where the preparation has been applied.
Very occasionally, the absorption of potent corticosteroids through the skin can cause adrenal suppression, generally when treatment is carried out on a large surface area, for a long time. Signs of adrenal suppression include stomach pain, weight loss, feeling or being sick, and headache.
Speak with your doctor or pharmacist if you experience these or any other side-effects which you think may be due to topical fluticasone.
How to store topical fluticasone
- Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
- Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
Important information about all medicines
Further reading & references
- British National Formulary; 60th Edition (September 2010) British Medical Association and Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, London.
- Manufacturer's PIL, Cutivate® Cream; Manufacturer's PIL, Cutivate® Cream, GlaxoSmithKline UK, electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated April 2009.
- Manufacturer's PIL, Cutivate® Ointment; Manufacturer's PIL, Cutivate® Ointment, GlaxoSmithKline UK, electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated April 2009.
|Original Author: Helen Allen||Current Version: Helen Allen|
|Last Checked: 22/02/2011||Document ID: 4148 Version: 2||© EMIS|
Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. EMIS has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.