- What is azelaic acid gel, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for azelaic acid gel?
- What are the side effects of azelaic acid gel?
- What is the dosage for azelaic acid gel?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with azelaic acid gel?
- Is azelaic acid gel safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about azelaic acid gel?
What is azelaic acid gel, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- Azelaic acid is a topical (applied to the skin) medication used for treating acne. Its exact mechanism of action is unknown. Azelaic acid may work as an antibacterial agent that blocks protein synthesis and therefore growth of Propionibacterium acnes and other bacteria on the surface of the skin that are associated with the development of acne. It may also inhibit follicular keratinization, which prevents development of acne lesions. The FDA approved azelaic acid in September 1995.
- References: FDA prescribing information
What brand names are available for azelaic acid gel?
Is azelaic acid gel available as a generic drug?
Do I need a prescription for azelaic acid gel?
What are the side effects of azelaic acid gel?
- Common side effects include:
Other side effects include:
Other less common side effects include:
What is the dosage for azelaic acid gel?
A thin layer of azelaic acid should be applied and massaged into the affected areas of the face every 12 hours.
Which drugs or supplements interact with azelaic acid gel?
There are no drug interactions listed for this azelaic acid.
Is azelaic acid gel safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- The safety azelaic acid has not been evaluated. It is not known whether azelaic acid is excreted in human milk. However, laboratory experiments suggest that the small amount of azelaic acid that is absorbed into the body may be excreted in human milk at very low concentrations that may not be significant.
What else should I know about azelaic acid gel?
What preparations of azelaic acid gel are available?
Gel, Foam, Kit: 15%. Cream: 20%
How should I keep azelaic acid gel stored?
Store azelaic acid between 15 C and 30 C (59 F and 86 F).
Azelaic acid (Finacea, Azelex) is a prescription drug used to treat acne vulgaris and inflammatory papules and pustules caused by rosacea. Side effects include itching, irritation, dry skin, tingling, and stinging. Drug interactions, dosage, and pregnancy and breastfeeding information should be reviewed prior to using this medication.
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Related Disease Conditions
Rosacea is a skin disease that causes redness of the forehead, chin, and lower half of the nose. In addition to inflammation of the facial skin, symptoms include dilation of the blood vessels and pimples (acne rosacea) in the middle third of the face. Oral and topical antibiotics are treatments for rosacea. If left untreated, rhinophyma (a disfiguring nose condition) may result.
Acne is a localized skin inflammation as a result of overactivity of oil glands at the base of hair follicles. This inflammation, depending on its location, can take the form of a superficial pustule (contains pus), a pimple, a deeper cyst, congested pores, whiteheads, or blackheads. Treatments vary depending on the severity of the acne.
Keratosis Pilaris (KP)
Keratosis pilaris (KP) is a skin condition in which white bumps appear on the upper arms, thighs, face, and cheeks. The condition tends to come and go.
Melasma is a patchy brown discoloration of the skin on the face. When it occurs in pregnancy, it's called chloasma. Melasma is commonly treated with hydroquinone creams.
Cystic acne is distinguished by painful nodules on the chest, face, neck, and back. This form of acne is known to scar. Treatment may incorporate the use of hormonal therapies, oral antibiotics, and prescription medications.
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
Prevention & Wellness
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.