permethrin topical cream, Acticin, Elimite

Pharmacy Author:
Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

GENERIC NAME: Permethrin

BRAND NAME: Acticin, Elimite

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Permethrin is a topical cream used to treat scabies. Permethrin is a neurotoxin that works by paralyzing nerves in respiratory muscles of scabies, causing their death. The FDA approved permethrin in August 1989.

PRESCRIBED FOR: Permethrin 5% cream is prescribed for the treatment of scabies.

SIDE EFFECTS: Common side effects of permethrin are:

  • mild-to-moderate burning and stinging,
  • itching,
  • rash, and
  • redness.



PREPARATIONS: Permethrin is available as a 5% cream in 60 gram tube.

STORAGE: Permethrin cream should be stored at room temperature from 20 C to 25 C (68 F to 77 F).

DOSING: For adults and children, the usual dose is a generous amount of cream from head to feet, left on for 8 to 14 hours, then washed with soap and water. This may be repeated in 14 days if necessary.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/13/2015

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.

Pill Finder Tool

Need help identifying pills and medications?
Use the pill identifier tool on RxList.

Back to Medications Index

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors