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fluorouracil topical (Tolak)
How does this medication work? What will it do for me?
Fluorouracil topical cream belongs to the class of medications called antineoplastics. It is used topically to treat a skin condition known as actinic keratosison the face, ears, and scalp.Actinic keratosis is a rough, crusty, or scaly growth on the top layer of skin. Actinic keratosis lesions may lead to skin cancer if they are not treated. This medication works by stopping the growth of the abnormal skin cells.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Each gram of cream contains 40 mg of fluorouracil as fluorouracil sodium. Nonmedicinal ingredients: arlacel-165, butylated hydroxytoluene, cetyl alcohol, anhydrous citric acid, glycerin, isopropyl myristate, methyl gluceth-10, methylparaben, peanut oil, propylparaben, purified water, sodium hydroxide, stearic acid, and stearyl alcohol.
How should I use this medication?
Fluorouracil topical cream is applied to the skin lesions and the area surrounding the lesions in a thin layer, once daily, for 4 weeks, unless otherwise directed by your doctor.
Wash the area to be treated and thoroughly pat the area dry. Once a day, apply a thin layer, but enough to cover the entire affected area of skin. Gently massage the cream into the skin. Wash your hands well with soap and water immediately after applying the cream.
Avoid contact with the eyes, eyelids, corners of the nose, mouth, or other areas that are easily irritated. Do not apply the cream to areas that are not affected by the lesions. Do not cover the treated area with an airtight dressing. Avoid transferring this medication from your body to other people.
This medication will cause the skin to become severely inflamed and irritated, but continue to use it for the length of time recommended by your doctor. Complete healing of the treated area may take 4 weeks after stopping treatment. If the area becomes severely irritated or does not heal, contact your doctor.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
It is important to use this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice .
Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.
Who should NOT take this medication?
Do not take this medication if you:
- are allergic to fluorouracil or any ingredients of the medication
- are or may become pregnant
- have dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase (DPD) deficiency
What side effects are possible with this medication?
- difficulty sleeping
- increased sensitivity to the sun
- skin reactions where the cream is applied (e.g., redness, scaling, dryness, swelling, crusting, skin breakdown, burning or stinking, itching)
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
- eye irritation
- eye swelling
- redness and swelling of normal skin
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
- severe itchiness or red rash (on treated areas or on areas not treated)
Are there any other precautions or warnings for this medication?
Allergic reaction: Skin irritation and redness are expected effects of fluorouracil. Some people will experience a delayed reaction to this medication that results in eczema or severe itchiness at the treatment site or another site on the body. If you experience any prolonged skin reaction after using fluorouracil topical cream, let your doctor know.
Dihydropyrimidine Dehydrogenase (DPD) deficiency: People who are deficient in the enzyme DPD do not have the ability to effectively break down and get rid of fluorouracil from the body. If you have this condition, you may develop serious side effects due to increased levels of fluorouracil in your body. If you experience fever or chills, vomiting, abdominal pain, or bloody diarrhea contact your doctor immediately.
Peanut allergy: This medication contains peanut oil. If you have a peanut allergy, you should not use this medication.
Sunlight: This medication can increase your sensitivity to the sun and sensitivity reactions including severe sunburn can occur. You should minimize your exposure to sunlight while using this medication. Sun lamps and tanning beds should be avoided.
Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.
Women who may become pregnant should use effective birth control while using this medication and for at least 1 month after stopping treatment.
Breast-feeding: It is not known if fluorouracil passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking this medication, it may affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.
Children: The safety and effectiveness of using this medication have not been established for children.
What other drugs could interact with this medication?
There may be an interaction between fluorouracil topical and any of the following:
- stop taking one of the medications,
- change one of the medications to another,
- change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or
- leave everything as is.
Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.
All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2022. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/drug/getdrug/Tolak