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Benzoyl peroxide lotion

Generic Name: benzoyl peroxide (BEN-zoe-il per-OX-ide and SOE-dee-um HYE-al-ure-ON-ate)
Brand Name: Examples include Zacare 4% Kit and Zacare 8% Kit

Benzoyl peroxide lotion is used for:

Treating mild to moderate acne.

Benzoyl peroxide lotion is a kit. It contains an antibacterial and keratolytic medicine (benzoyl peroxide) along with a skin conditioning medicine (sodium hyaluronate). The benzoyl peroxide works to treat acne by killing certain bacteria on the skin and by causing a mild drying and peeling (keratolytic) effect. The sodium hyaluronate helps treat or prevent very dry or scaly skin.

Do NOT use benzoyl peroxide lotion if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in benzoyl peroxide lotion

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using benzoyl peroxide lotion:

Some medical conditions may interact with benzoyl peroxide lotion. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have inflamed or damaged skin at the application site

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with benzoyl peroxide lotion. Because little, if any, of benzoyl peroxide lotion is absorbed into the blood, the risk of it interacting with another medicine is low.

Ask your health care provider if benzoyl peroxide lotion may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use benzoyl peroxide lotion:

Use benzoyl peroxide lotion as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • To use the benzoyl peroxide lotion: Wash the affected area with soap and water or as directed by your doctor. Shake the lotion well before each use. Wet the skin areas to be treated with water. Apply the lotion over the affected area. Gently rub it into a full lather. Rinse well with water then pat the area dry.
  • To use the sodium hyaluronate gel: Apply to the affected areas and rub in well as directed by your doctor.
  • Wash your hands immediately after using benzoyl peroxide lotion.
  • If you miss a dose of benzoyl peroxide lotion, use it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use benzoyl peroxide lotion.

Important safety information:

  • Certain acne products that contain benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid can rarely cause serious and sometimes life-threatening allergic reactions or severe irritation. Before first use, you may need to follow certain steps to make sure you do not have an allergic reaction. Use benzoyl peroxide lotion as you were told by your doctor or read the package label. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.
  • Benzoyl peroxide lotion is for external use only. Avoid getting it in your eyes, on the inside of your nose or mouth, or on your lips. If you get it in any of these areas, rinse right away with cool tap water.
  • Do not apply benzoyl peroxide lotion to raw, inflamed, or irritated skin, including sunburns. Do not apply benzoyl peroxide lotion to open wounds.
  • Several weeks may pass before you see improvement in your acne. It may take up to 8 to 12 weeks before you notice the full effect of benzoyl peroxide lotion. Continue to use benzoyl peroxide lotion for the full time recommended by your doctor. If your acne does not improve or if it gets worse, check with your doctor.
  • Talk with your doctor before you use any other medicines, special cleansers, aftershave, or cosmetics on your skin.
  • Benzoyl peroxide lotion may cause you to become sunburned more easily. Avoid the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to benzoyl peroxide lotion. Use a sunscreen or wear protective clothing if you must be outside for more than a short time.
  • Benzoyl peroxide may cause bleaching. Avoid contact with hair, fabrics, or carpeting.
  • Benzoyl peroxide lotion should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 12 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using benzoyl peroxide lotion while you are pregnant. It is not known if benzoyl peroxide lotion is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use benzoyl peroxide lotion, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of benzoyl peroxide lotion:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Mild burning, dryness, itching, peeling, redness, stinging, or swelling of the treated areas.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; dizziness; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); severe or persistent burning, dryness, irritation, itching, peeling, redness, stinging, or swelling of the treated areas; shedding of the skin.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include excessive scaling; flushing; redness; swelling.

Proper storage of benzoyl peroxide lotion:

Store at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Brief storage at temperatures between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) is permitted. Store in a tightly closed container, away from fire, flame, heat, and light. Keep benzoyl peroxide lotion out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about benzoyl peroxide lotion, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Benzoyl peroxide lotion is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take benzoyl peroxide lotion or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about benzoyl peroxide lotion. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to benzoyl peroxide lotion. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your health care provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using benzoyl peroxide lotion.

Issue Date: September 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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