Generic name: Terbinafine hydrochlorideBrand names: Lamisil
Lamisil fights fungal infections. In tablet form, it's used for fungus of the toenail or fingernail. The cream and the solution are used for other fungal infections such as athlete's foot, jock itch, and ringworm. The solution is also used to treat tinea versicolor, a fungal infection that produces brown, tan, or white spots on the trunk of the body.
Lamisil does not produce instant results. You won't see the full effect of the tablets for several months, until a healthy new nail has grown out. The cream and solution also work gradually. It usually takes a week for results to appear, and improvement often continues for 2 to 6 weeks after treatment has stopped. However, if you see no change at all after a full week of applying the cream or solution, notify your doctor. The problem may be other than fungal.
Before applying Lamisil solution, clean and dry the infected area thoroughly. Use enough solution to fully wet the entire area. When using either the solution or the cream, do not cover the treated area with dressings unless directed by your doctor.
Continue using Lamisil for the full amount of time your doctor prescribes, even if your symptoms begin to improve.
Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Lamisil.
Side effects of the cream and solution are uncommon. They include burning or irritation, itching, dryness, peeling, and rash.
The tablets are a bit more likely to cause a reaction:
Do not use Lamisil if it has ever given you an allergic reaction.
Changes in the lens and retina of the eye have been reported in people taking Lamisil tablets. If you notice any changes in your vision while taking the tablets, notify your doctor.
Lamisil tablets have been known to cause rare cases of liver damage. If you develop warning signs such as nausea, loss of appetite, or fatigue, alert your doctor. Lamisil tablets are not recommended if you have liver disease or kidney problems.
If you suffer from the autoimmune disorder lupus erythematosus, you will not be able to take Lamisil.
Lamisil tablets have also, in rare instances, caused very severe skin reactions. If you develop a steadily worsening rash, stop taking the tablets and call your doctor immediately.
If you develop another kind of infection while taking Lamisil tablets, tell your doctor. Lamisil may decrease your ability to fight infection.
Do not use Lamisil cream or solution in the eye, mouth, nose, or vagina. In case of accidental contact with the eyes, rinse them thoroughly with running water and call your doctor if symptoms continue.
If you develop skin irritation, redness, itching, burning, blistering, swelling, or oozing while using the cream or solution, notify your doctor. Do not cover the treated area with dressings unless directed by your doctor.
Lamisil has not been tested for safety in children.
If Lamisil is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Lamisil tablets with the following:Antidepressants such as amitriptyline, desipramine, fluoxetine, imipramine, nortriptyline, paroxetine, phenelzine, sertraline, and tranylcypromineCimetidineCyclosporineDrugs classified as beta blockers such as the heart and blood pressure medications acebutolol, atenolol, and propranololRifampin
The safety of Lamisil during pregnancy has not been conclusively proven. Treatment with the tablets should not be started during pregnancy, and the cream and solution should be used only if clearly needed.
Lamisil from the tablets does appear in breast milk, so the drug is not recommended while breastfeeding. Do not apply Lamisil cream or solution to the breast.
Fungal Infection of the Fingernails
The recommended dose is one 250-milligram tablet once a day for 6 weeks.
Fungal Infection of the Toenails
The recommended dose is one 250-milligram tablet once a day for 12 weeks.
Athlete's Foot, Jock Itch, and Ringworm
Apply to the affected and closely surrounding areas twice a day until signs and symptoms improve. Use for a minimum of 7 days, but no more than 4 weeks.
For athlete's foot found only on the soles of the feet and not between the toes, use the cream twice a day for 2 weeks.
Athlete's Foot and Tinea Versicolor
Apply to the affected and closely surrounding areas twice a day for 1 week.
Jock Itch and Ringworm
Apply to the affected and closely surrounding areas once a day for 1 week.
Any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. If you suspect an overdose with Lamisil tablets, seek medical treatment immediately.