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What is desonide?

Desonide is a prescription drug. It comes in five forms, all of which are topical (applied to the skin). These forms are cream, lotion, ointment, gel, and foam.

Desonide topical cream is available as the brand-name drug DesOwen Cream. It’s also available as a generic drug. Generic drugs usually cost less. In some cases, they may not be available in all strengths or form as the brand-name version.

Desonide may be used as part of a combination therapy. This means you may need to use it with other medications.

Why is this medication prescribed?

Desonide is used to treat the redness, swelling, itching, and discomfort of various skin conditions, including psoriasis (a skin disease in which red, scaly patches form on some areas of the body and eczema (a skin disease that causes the skin to be dry and itchy and to sometimes develop red, scaly rashes). Desonide is in a class of medications called topical corticosteroids. It works by activating natural substances in the skin to reduce swelling, redness, and itching.

Important warnings

Hormonal changes warning: If this drug is used regularly and at very high doses, it may cause changes in your adrenal glands (glands that make hormones). This can cause conditions such as Cushing’s syndrome. Symptoms include a round face, weight gain in the center of your body, a hump on your back, and pink or purple stretch marks on your stomach, thighs, arms, and chest. Hormonal changes can also cause adrenal insufficiency. Symptoms can include tiredness, muscle weakness, and weight loss.

Skin irritation warning: If you’re taking this drug and you develop a skin rash, itchy skin, swelling, blisters, irritation, or if your condition gets worse, call your doctor. You may need to stop taking this drug.

How it works

Desonide belongs to a class of drugs called topical corticosteroids. A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way. These drugs are often used to treat similar conditions.

Topical corticosteroids are absorbed into the skin cells. They stop these cells from producing certain chemicals that cause inflammation. These chemicals are normally released when the skin reacts to irritation or allergens (substances that cause an allergic reaction).

Highlights for desonide

Desonide topical cream is available as a generic drug and a brand-name drug. Brand name: DesOwen.

Desonide comes in five forms, all of which are topical (applied to the skin). These forms are cream, lotion, ointment, gel, and foam.

Desonide is a corticosteroid. It’s used to treat skin problems that may cause itching, redness, and swelling.