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Imiquimod

Imiquimod

Descriptions

Imiquimod topical is used to treat external warts around the genital and rectal areas called condyloma acuminatum. It is not used on warts inside the vagina, penis, or rectum. Imiquimod is also used to treat a skin condition of the face and scalp called actinic keratosis (AK), which is caused by too much sun exposure. Imiquimod may be used to treat certain types of skin cancer called superficial basal cell carcinoma (sBCC).

Imiquimod works on the immune system to help the body fight viruses that cause warts. It does not destroy the viruses directly. It is not known how imiquimod works for actinic keratosis or skin cancer.

WHAT ARE SIDE EFFECTS ASSOCIATED WITH USING IMIQUIMOD?

Common side effects of imiquimod include:

  • a hardened mass or formation
  • application site reaction
  • back pain
  • bleeding
  • burning
  • chest pain
  • coughing
  • diarrhea

Uses

Imiquimod is used to treat actinic keratoses (AK) which are precancerous growths on the skin. AK are caused by too much sun exposure. Treating this condition can decrease the risk of complications from them. It is also used to treat warts on the outside of the genitals/anus. Imiquimod belongs to a group of drugs called immune response modifiers. It is believed to work by helping to activate your immune system to fight these abnormal skin growths.

This product is not recommended for use on children under 12 years of age unless specifically directed by your doctor.

WHAT IS IMIQUIMOD AND HOW DOES IT WORK?

Imiquimod is a prescription medication used to treat skin conditions such as actinic keratosis, superficial basal cell carcinoma, and external genital warts.

Imiquimod is available under the following different brand names: Aldara and Zyclara.

Dosages of Imiquimod:

Adult and Pediatric dosages:

Topical cream

  • 2.5% (Zyclara) (adults only)
  • 3.75% (Zyclara)
  • 5% (Aldara)

Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.

Overdose

This medicine may be harmful if swallowed. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.

WHAT ARE WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS FOR IMIQUIMOD?

Warnings

This medication contains imiquimod. Do not take Aldara or Zyclara if you are allergic to imiquimod or any ingredients contained in this drug.

Keep out of reach of children. In case of overdose, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Center immediately.

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