Brand names: Aclovate
Aclovate, a synthetic steroid medication of the cortisone family, is spread on the skin to relieve certain types of itchy rashes, including psoriasis.
When you use Aclovate, you inevitably absorb some of the medication through your skin and into the bloodstream. Too much absorption can lead to unwanted side effects elsewhere in the body. To keep this problem to a minimum, avoid using large amounts of Aclovate over large areas, and do not cover it with airtight dressings such as plastic wrap or adhesive bandages unless specifically told to by your doctor.
Use Aclovate exactly as prescribed by your doctor and only to treat the condition for which your doctor prescribed it. The usual procedure is to spread a thin film of Aclovate cream or ointment over the rash and massage gently until the medication disappears. Do this 2 or 3 times a day.
For areas of deep-seated, persistent rash, your doctor may recommend a thick layer of Aclovate cream or ointment topped with waterproof bandaging, to be left in place for 1 to 4 days. If necessary, this procedure may be repeated 3 or 4 times. Do not use bandaging at all, however, unless your doctor so advises.
Aclovate is for use only on the skin. Be careful to keep it out of your eyes.
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 Aclovate.
Do not use Aclovate if it has ever given you an allergic reaction.
Aclovate is for external use only. Do not let the cream or ointment get into your eyes. Avoid using the product on your face, underarms, or groin, unless the doctor tells you to.
Do not use Aclovate to treat diaper rash or apply it in the diaper area; waterproof diapers or plastic pants can increase unwanted absorption of Aclovate.
If your skin is inflamed or you have some other skin condition, tell your doctor. You may absorb more drug than usual.
If you use Aclovate over large areas of skin for prolonged periods of time, the amount of hormone absorbed into your bloodstream may eventually lead to Cushing's syndrome: a moon-faced appearance, fattened neck and trunk, and purplish streaks on the skin. Children, because of their relatively larger ratio of skin surface to body weight, are particularly susceptible to overabsorption of hormone from Aclovate. The drug should not be used on children under 1 year of age or for more than 3 weeks in children older than 1 year.
Check with your doctor before combining Aclovate with other more potent steroids, since this could lead to undesirably large amounts of hormone circulating in your bloodstream.
Drug absorbed from Aclovate cream or ointment into the bloodstream may find its way into an unborn child's blood, or may seep into breast milk. To avoid any possible harm to your child, use Aclovate very sparingly—and only with your doctor's permission—if you are pregnant or nursing a baby.
Apply a thin film of Aclovate cream or ointment to the affected skin areas 2 or 3 times daily; massage gently until the medication disappears.
Bandages that block out air may be used to control psoriasis and other severe skin rashes, if your doctor recommends them. Apply as follows:
With this method of treatment, marked improvement is often seen in a few days. If an infection develops, the use of airtight bandages should be discontinued. Your doctor will recommend an alternative treatment.
Once your condition is under control, you should stop using Aclovate. If you don't see any improvement within 2 weeks, check with your doctor.
Any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. If you suspect an overdose, seek medical attention immediately.
In a child, an overdose of Aclovate may cause increased pressure within the skull leading to bulging soft spots (in an infant's head) or headache. If this happens, see a doctor without delay.
Over the long term, overuse of Aclovate can interfere with a child's normal growth and development.