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In the U.S.-
Another commonly used name is dithranol.
Anthralin ( AN-thra-lin) is used to treat psoriasis. It may also be used to treat other skin conditions as determined by your doctor.
In the U.S., this medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription. In Canada, this medicine should be used only on the advice of your doctor.
This medicine is available in the following dosage forms:
Before Using This Medicine
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of using the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For anthralin, the following should be considered:
Allergies- Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to anthralin, parabens, or salicylic acid. Also tell your health care professional if you are allergic to any other substances, such as foods, preservatives, or dyes.
Pregnancy- Anthralin may be absorbed through the skin. However, studies on effects in pregnancy have not been done in either humans or animals.
Breast-feeding- Anthralin may be absorbed through the mother's skin. However, it is not known whether anthralin passes into the breast milk. Although most medicines pass into breast milk in small amounts, many of them may be used safely while breast-feeding. Mothers who are using this medicine and who wish to breast-feed should discuss this with their doctor.
Children- Studies on this medicine have been done only in adult patients, and there is no specific information comparing use of anthralin in children with use in other age groups.
Older adults- Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if they cause different side effects or problems in older people. There is no specific information comparing use of anthralin in the elderly with use in other age groups.
Other medicines- Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your health care professional if you are using any other topical prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine that is to be applied to the same area of the skin.
Other medical problems- The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of anthralin. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
Proper Use of This Medicine
Keep this medicine away from the eyes and mucous membranes, such as the mouth and the inside of the nose .
Do not apply this medicine to blistered, raw, or oozing areas of the skin or scalp .
Do not use this medicine on your face or sex organs or in the folds and creases of your skin . If you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.
Use this medicine only as directed . Do not use more of it, do not use it more often, and do not use it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. To do so may increase the chance of side effects.
Anthralin may be used in different ways. In some cases, it is applied at night and allowed to remain on the affected areas overnight, then washed off the next morning or before the next application. In other cases, it may be applied and allowed to remain on the affected areas for a short period of time (usually 10 to 30 minutes), then washed off. (This is called short contact treatment.) Make sure you understand exactly how you are to use this medicine. If you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.
Anthralin may cause irritation of normal skin. If it does, petrolatum may be applied to the skin or scalp around the affected areas for protection.
Apply a thin layer of anthralin to only the affected area of the skin or scalp and rub in gently and well.
Immediately after applying this medicine, wash your hands to remove any medicine that may be on them.
For patients using anthralin for short contact (usually 10 to 30 minutes) treatment:
For patients using the cream form of anthralin for overnight treatment:
For patients using the ointment form of anthralin for overnight treatment:
The dose of anthralin will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label . The following information includes only the average doses of anthralin. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
If you miss a dose of this medicine, apply it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
To store this medicine:
Precautions While Using This Medicine
Anthralin may stain the skin, hair, fingernails, clothing, bed linens, or bathtub or shower. The stain on the skin or hair will wear off in several weeks after you stop using this medicine. Some ways to prevent or lessen anthralin staining include:
Side Effects of This Medicine
Anthralin has been shown to cause tumors in animals. However, there have been no reports of anthralin causing tumors in humans.
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.
Once a medicine has been approved for marketing for a certain use, experience may show that it is also useful for other medical problems. Although this use is not included in product labeling, anthralin is used in certain patients with the following medical condition:
Other than the above information, there is no additional information relating to proper use, precautions, or side effects for this use.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT