Imiquimod

Description

Imiquimod is used for the treatment of external genital or perianal warts and basal cell cancer of the skin. It is also used for the treatment actinic keratoses, a condition where the skin gets thickened and rough due to the damage from sun exposure.

Side effects

Major & minor side effects for Imiquimod

  • Skin Rash
  • Itching of the rectal or genital areas
  • Redness of skin
  • Blisters on the skin
  • Soreness or tenderness of skin
  • Burning or stinging sensation

Uses of Imiquimod

What is it prescribed for?

  • Actinic Keratosis
  • Condylomata Acuminata
  • Basal cell carcinoma
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Concerns

Commonly asked questions

  • Onset of action
    The amount of time required for this medicine to show its action is not clinically established.
  • Duration of effect
    The amount of time for which this medicine remains active in the body is not clinically established.
  • Safe with alcohol?
    Interaction with alcohol is unknown. It is advisable to consult your doctor before consumption.
  • Is it habit forming?
    No habit-forming tendencies were reported.
  • Usage in pregnancy?
    This medicine is not recommended for use in pregnant women unless absolutely necessary. The risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before using this medicine.
  • Usage while breast-feeding?
    This medicine is not recommended for use in breastfeeding women unless absolutely necessary. All the risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before using this medicine. Your doctor may advise you to discontinue the drug or to discontinue breastfeeding based on your clinical condition.

Allergy

This medicine is not recommended for use if you have a known allergy to imiquimod, or any other inactive ingredients present along with it.
Warnings for special population

Pregnancy

This medicine is not recommended for use in pregnant women unless absolutely necessary. The risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before using this medicine.

Breast-feeding

This medicine is not recommended for use in breastfeeding women unless absolutely necessary. All the risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before using this medicine. Your doctor may advise you to discontinue the drug or to discontinue breastfeeding based on your clinical condition.
General warnings

Use in children

Safety and efficacy of this medicine for the treatment of external genital warts have not been clinically established in patients younger than 12 years. Safety and efficacy of this medicine for the treatment of actinic keratosis or superficial basal cell carcinoma have not been clinically established in patients younger than 18 years.

Photosensitivity

This medicine may make you more sensitive to sunlight or tanning lights. You are advised to use sunscreen and wear protective clothing to avoid adverse reactions to sunlight during treatment with this medicine.

Local skin reactions and flu-like signs and symptoms

Use of this medicine may cause flu-like signs and symptoms and local inflammatory reactions including skin weeping or erosion in some patients. Appropriate corrective measures, dose adjustments, or replacement with a suitable alternative may be necessary based on the clinical condition.

Auto-immune diseases

This medicine should be used with extreme caution in the patients with autoimmune conditions due to the increased risk of worsening of the patient's condition. All the risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before using this medicine in such patients. Appropriate corrective measures, dose adjustments, or replacement with a suitable alternative may be necessary based on the clinical condition.

Other medicines

This medicine may interact with many other medicines and may cause severe adverse effects. Hence, it is advised that you inform the doctor about all your current medicines including any herbs and supplements before beginning treatment with this medicine.

Missed Dose

Apply the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose. Do not apply a double dose to make up for the missed one.

Overdose

An overdose of this medicine is not likely to cause severe symptoms unless it is applied for a prolonged period of time in large volumes. However, ingestion of this medicine may cause harm and immediate medical intervention may be required. Symptoms of an overdose may include severe skin irritation, feeling light-headed, or fainting, etc.
All drugs interact differently for person to person. You should check all the possible interactions with your doctor before starting any medicine.
Interaction with Alcohol

Description

Interaction with alcohol is unknown. It is advisable to consult your doctor before consumption.

Instructions

Interaction with alcohol is unknown. It is advisable to consult your doctor before consumption.
Interaction with Medicine
Disease interactions

Disease

Information not available.
Food interactions
Information not available.
Lab interactions
Information not available.
Apply a thin layer of the cream to the affected area as instructed by the doctor. Avoid contact with the eyes, nostrils, and mouth. Follow all the usage instructions mentioned on the label or the package insert. Do not apply in larger or smaller quantities than recommended. Do not cover the application area with bandages or other coverings unless specifically instructed by the doctor.
Miscelleneous

Usage does not depend on food timings

To be taken as instructed by doctor

Does not cause sleepiness

How it works
It stimulates the immune system and releases a chemical called cytokines. It may increase the infiltration of certain cell types such as lymphocytes, dendritic cells, and macrophages into cancer lesion and thus helps in treating basal cell cancer of the skin.
Legal Status

Approved

Approved

Approved

Approved

Classification

Category

Topical anti-infectives, Topical antineoplastics

Schedule

Schedule H

[Internet]. Medicines.org.uk. 2018 [cited 19 September 2018]. Available from:

https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/files/pil.823.pdf

[Internet]. Medsafe.govt.nz. 2018 [cited 19 September 2018]. Available from:

http://www.medsafe.govt.nz/Consumers/cmi/a/aldara.pdf

[Internet]. Ema.europa.eu. 2018 [cited 19 September 2018]. Available from:

http://www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/EPAR_-_Product_Information/human/000179/WC500023122.pdf

[Internet]. Accessdata.fda.gov. 2018 [cited 19 September 2018]. Available from:

https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2004/20723s016lbl.pdf

Imiquimod - DrugBank [Internet]. Drugbank.ca. 2018 [cited 19 September 2018]. Available from:

https://www.drugbank.ca/drugs/DB00724

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Information on this page was last updated on 25 Jan 2019

Disclaimer

We’ve made all possible efforts to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, however, it should not be treated as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Practo only provides reference source for common information on medicines and does not guarantee its accuracy or exhaustiveness. The absence of a warning for any drug or combination thereof, should not be assumed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for any given patient. Practo does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information provided above. If you have any doubts about your medication then we strongly recommend that you consult with your doctor, nurse or healthcare provider. See detailed T&C here.