Does Cormax Ointment (clobetasol propionate) cause side effects?

Cormax Ointment (clobetasol propionate) is a corticosteroid used on the skin (topically) for the short-term treatment of moderate to severe psoriasis in the scalp and non-scalp areas, corticosteroid-responsive dermatoses, and dermatoses of the scalp. It is available as foam, shampoo, cream, gel, lotion, ointment, solution, and spray. 

Topical clobetasol is used to treat certain scalp and skin conditions such as psoriasis, rashes, and dermatitis. Corticosteroids have potent anti-inflammatory actions and also suppress the immune response. Cormax Ointment is a very potent topical corticosteroid and should only be used for a short period of time. Long term use of Cormax Ointment can cause serious systemic side effects and should be avoided.

Common side effects of Cormax Ointment include

Serious side effects of Cormax Ointment include

  • depression of the ability of the body's adrenal glands to produce corticosteroids with prolonged use.

Abruptly stopping Cormax Ointment after prolonged use can cause symptoms of corticosteroid insufficiency.

There are no listed drug interactions of Cormax Ointment. There are no adequate and well-controlled studies evaluating the use of topical corticosteroids such as Cormax Ointment during pregnancy.

Therefore, Cormax Ointment and other topical corticosteroids should only be used during pregnancy if the potential benefit to the mother justifies the potential risk to the unborn baby. If used during pregnancy, large amounts or use for long periods of time should be avoided.

It is unknown if Cormax Ointment is secreted in breast milk. Topical corticosteroids should be used cautiously in nursing mothers. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.

What are the important side effects of Cormax Ointment (clobetasol propionate)?


Clobetasol propionate is a very strong topical corticosteroid that causes serious side effects if absorbed into the blood. If absorbed into the blood stream prolonged use of clobetasol can depress the ability of the body's adrenal glands to produce corticosteroids.

Abruptly stopping hydrocortisone in these individuals can cause symptoms of corticosteroid insufficiency. Therefore, topical corticosteroids should only be used for short term therapy and only applied to small area(s) of the body.

Cormax Ointment (clobetasol propionate) side effects list for healthcare professionals

Cormax Ointment is generally well tolerated when used for two-week treatment periods. The most frequent adverse reactions reported for clobetasol propionate ointment have been local and have included

  • burning sensation,
  • irritation, and
  • itching.

These occured in approximately 0.5% of the patients. Less frequent adverse reactions were

The following local adverse reactions are reported infrequently when topical corticosteroids are used as recommended. These reactions are listed in an approximately decreasing order of occurrence:

Systemic absorption of topical corticosteroids has produced reversible HPA axis suppression, manifestations of

  • Cushing's syndrome,
  • hyperglycemia, and
  • glucosuria in some patients.

In rare instances, treatment (or withdrawal of treatment) of psoriasis with corticosteroids is thought to have exacerbated the disease or provoked the pustular form of the disease, so careful patient supervision is recommended.

What drugs interact with Cormax Ointment (clobetasol propionate)?

No information provided.

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Medically Reviewed on 1/8/2021
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Professional side effects and drug interactions sections courtesy of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.