- Bacterial Infections 101 Pictures Slideshow
- Take the Tummy Trouble Quiz
- Hepatitis C Slideshow Pictures
- What is mupirocin, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What brand names are available for mupirocin?
- Is mupirocin available as a generic drug?
- Do I need a prescription for mupirocin?
- What are the uses for mupirocin?
- What are the side effects of mupirocin?
- What is the dosage for mupirocin?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with mupirocin?
- Is mupirocin safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about mupirocin?
What is mupirocin, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
Mupirocin is an antibiotic that is used topically (on the skin) for the treatment of impetigo, a bacterial disease of the skin caused by Staphylococcus aureus, beta-hemolytic streptococcus and Streptococcus pyogenes. It also is used intranasally (inside the nose) by patients and some people who work in healthcare centers to eliminate methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) that have colonized the inside of the nose.
Unlike most other antibiotics which act on either bacterial DNA or the walls of bacteria, mupirocin blocks the activity of an enzyme called isoleucyl-tRNA synthetase within the bacteria. This enzyme is necessary in order for the bacteria to make proteins. Without the ability to make proteins, the bacteria die. Because of its unique mechanism of action, there is little chance that bacteria will have become resistant to mupirocin because of exposure to other antibiotics. Mupirocin topical cream was approved by the FDA in December, 1987. The intranasal form was approved in October 1995.
What brand names are available for mupirocin?
Bactroban, Bactroban Nasal, Centany
Is mupirocin available as a generic drug?
GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes
Do I need a prescription for mupirocin?
What are the uses for mupirocin?
Mupirocin is used for the treatment of impetigo and infections of the skin caused by Staphylococcus aureus, beta-hemolytic streptococcus or Streptococcus pyogenes. Mupirocin is not recommended for use on the skin in serious burns, because more of the vehicle (the inactive ingredient) used for the ointment, polyethylene glycol (Miralax), may be absorbed and can damage the kidneys. The nasal ointment is used for the elimination of nasal Staphylococcus aureus that have become resistant to other antibiotics. Mupirocin also may be used for other infections as determined by the physician.
What are the side effects of mupirocin?
Side effects are uncommon and mild with mupirocin. The most frequent side effects are:
Other side effects caused by the intranasal use of mupirocin include:
- runny nose,
- sore throat,
- changes in taste perception,
- nasal irritation,
- and cough.
Quick GuideSymptoms of Mono: Infectious Mononucleosis Treatment
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
Need help identifying pills and medications?
Use the pill identifier tool on RxList.