silver sulfadiazine (Silvadene, SSD, SSD AF, Thermazene)

  • 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: Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

    Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.

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What brand names are available for silver sulfadiazine-topical?

Silvadene, SSD, SSD AF, Thermazene

Is silver sulfadiazine-topical available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for silver sulfadiazine-topical?

Yes

What are the uses for silver sulfadiazine-topical?

What are the side effects of silver sulfadiazine-topical?

  • Since silver sulfadiazine is applied to the surface of the skin, it rarely affects other areas of the body or causes long term side effects.
  • Most of the side effects reported with use are short lived and limited to the areas being treated.
  • Use of silver sulfadiazine may cause the treated area(s) to be more sensitive to sunlight (photosensitive or sun sensitive). To avoid sunburn, patients must take caution in protecting the affected area(s) from prolonged sun exposure.
  • Other rare skin reactions reported with silver sulfadiazine use include
    • skin necrosis (skin death),
    • redness,
    • burning sensation of the treated area(s),
    • itching,
    • rash, and
    • brownish-gray skin discoloration.
  • Rarely, a drop in white blood cells has been reported with silver sulfadiazine therapy. Drop in white blood counts peak within 2-4 days of starting treatment and usually return to normal limits following 2-3 days of onset.
  • Patients are advised to speak to their pharmacist or doctor for a complete list of side effects, including those caused by sulfonamides.

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What is the dosage for silver sulfadiazine-topical?

For adults, adolescents, children, and infants 2 months of age and older:

  • After cleaning and debridement, silver sulfadiazine may be applied to the affected area(s) to a thickness of approximately 1.6 mm (1/16 of an inch) once or twice daily.
  • The cream may be reapplied whenever necessary to affected area(s) if it is removed by activity or washing.
  • Silver sulfadiazine is not recommended for use in premature neonates or neonates < 2 months of age.

Which drugs or supplements interact with silver sulfadiazine-topical?

:

  • Silver sulfadiazine reduces the effect of collagenase (Santyl) ointment which is used for treating dermal ulcers.
  • No significant drug interactions with oral medications have been reported with silver sulfadiazine use.

Is silver sulfadiazine-topical safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

:

  • Use of topical silver sulfadiazine has not been adequately evaluated in pregnant women. Due to the lack of conclusive safety data, silver sulfadiazine should be used in pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus. Silver sulfadiazine is classified as FDA pregnancy risk category B (animal reproduction studies have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women).
  • It is not known if silver sulfadiazine is excreted in breast milk. However, silver sulfadiazine is a sulfonamide and oral sulfonamides are excreted into breast milk and increase the risk of kernicterus, a rare type of brain damage in newborns caused by very high levels of bilirubin. Therefore, use of silver sulfadiazine in females who are breastfeeding is not recommended.

What else should I know about silver sulfadiazine-topical?

What preparations of silver sulfadiazine-topical are available?

1% topical cream

How should I keep silver sulfadiazine-topical stored?

Cream should be stored at room temperature between 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).

REFERENCE: FDA Prescribing Information.

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Reviewed on 9/28/2016
References
REFERENCE: FDA Prescribing Information.

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