permethrin topical cream, Acticin, Elimite

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

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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.

PRESCRIPTION: Yes

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

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.

Safe and effective use of permethrin is not established in pediatric patients younger than 2 months of age.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: There are no significant drug interactions with permethrin.

PREGNANCY: There are no adequate studies done with permethrin to determine safe and effective use in pregnant women.

NURSING MOTHERS: It is not known whether permethrin enters breast milk; therefore, it is best to be cautious before using it in nursing mothers.

Medically reviewed by Eni Williams, PharmD

REFERENCES:

Elimite - Prescribing Information

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/13/2015

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