Ketoconazole vs. Selenium Sulfide

Medically Reviewed on 12/9/2021

What is the difference between ketoconazole and selenium sulfide?

What are ketoconazole and selenium sulfide?

What are the side effects of ketoconazole and selenium sulfide?

Ketoconazole side effects

Ketoconazole generally is well tolerated. Commonly reported side effects of ketoconazole are:

Other important side effects of ketoconazole are rare; they include:

Liver dysfunction also has been reported. Signs of liver problems include unusual fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, yellowing of the skin (jaundice), dark urine, and pale stools. Development of these symptoms while taking ketoconazole should be reported to a physician.

Selenium sulfide side effects

The common side effects of selenium sulfide are:

  • Oily hair
  • Dry hair
  • Dry scalp
  • Hair loss
  • Hair discoloration

Other side effects of selenium sulfide include:

What is the dosage of ketonazole vs. selenium sulfide?


  • Ketoconazole may be taken with or without food. The oral dose range is 200-400 mg daily. Recurrent tinea versicolor is treated with 400 mg monthly. Topical formulations are administered to affected areas once or twice daily.

Selenium Sulfide

  • For treating dandruff, 5-10 mL of shampoo or lotion should be massaged into wet scalp 2 times per week for 2 weeks then once every 1-2 weeks to control dandruff. The shampoo or lotion should be left on the scalp for 2 to 3 minutes, then rinsed off3 or 4 times with water. The application should be repeated.
  • Tinea versicolor should be treated by applying lotion or shampoo to the affected area, leaving it on the skin for 10 minutes and then washing it off with water. It should be applied every day for 7 days. The foam should be rubbed into the affected skin every 12 hours.

What drugs interact with ketonazole and selenium sulfide?


Selenium Sulfide

Are ketoconazole and selenium sulfide safe to use while pregnant or breastfeeding?

Ketoconazole safety

Selenium sulfide safety

  • Use of selenium sulfide during pregnancy has not been adequately evaluated. It is not known whether selenium sulfide is excreted in breast milk.

Consult with your doctor about which drugs you can take when pregnant or breastfeeding.


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Ketoconazole and selenium sulfide are antifungal agents used to treat itching, flaking, scaling, and dry skin on the scalp due to dandruff. Ketoconazole and selenium sulfide are also used for treating seborrhea (a red, itchy rash) and tinea versicolor (a fungal infection of the skin). Rash, itching, nausea, and vomiting are side effects of these two topical agents.

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Medically Reviewed on 12/9/2021
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