metronidazole cream, Noritate, Metrocream

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GENERIC NAME: metronidazole cream

BRAND NAME: Noritate, Metrocream

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Metronidazole cream is a topical preparation (applied to the skin) of the antibiotic metronidazole. It is used for reducing the swelling and redness caused by acne rosacea. The mechanism through which metronidazole cream reduces the symptoms of acne rosacea is not known. The FDA approved metronidazole cream in September 1997.

PRESCRIPTION: Yes

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

PREPARATIONS: Cream: 0.75 and 1%

STORAGE: Metronidazole cream should be stored at room temperature, 15-30 C (59-86 F)

PRESCRIBED FOR: Metronidazole cream is used for the topical treatment of swelling and redness caused by acne rosacea. Metronidazole cream also reduces the number of acne rosacea lesions.

DOSING: Metronidazole cream is applied to affected areas once or twice daily. The affected areas should be cleaned before application, and then a thin film should be applied and rubbed into the skin. Makeup may be used after metronidazole cream has been applied. Metronidazole cream is for external use only. Contact with the eyes should be avoided.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Drug interactions with metronidazole cream are unlikely because only small amounts of metronidazole are absorbed into the body when metronidazole cream is applied to the skin. Oral metronidazole interacts with warfarin (Coumadin), increasing the blood-thinning effects of warfarin. It is not known whether the small amounts of metronidazole absorbed via the skin can cause the same interaction.

PREGNANCY: There are no adequate studies of metronidazole cream in pregnant women.

NURSING MOTHERS: When metronidazole is administered orally it is secreted into breast milk in concentrations similar to the concentration in the mothers body. Therefore, small amounts of metronidazole that are absorbed into the body when metronidazole cream is used may be secreted into breast milk.

SIDE EFFECTS: Side effects are rare and minor. Some patients may experience irritation, skin dryness, scaling, and itching at the site of application. Individuals that are allergic to metronidazole should not use metronidazole cream.

Reference: FDA Prescribing Information


Last Editorial Review: 4/17/2012




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