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Benzoyl peroxide wash

Generic Name: benzoyl peroxide (BEN-zoe-il per-OK-sid)
Brand Name: Examples include Brevoxyl-4 and Brevoxyl-8

Benzoyl peroxide wash is used for:

Treating mild to moderate acne.

Benzoyl peroxide wash is an antibacterial and keratolytic agent. It works by killing bacteria that cause acne and by causing mild drying and peeling of the skin.

Do NOT use benzoyl peroxide wash if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in benzoyl peroxide wash

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

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Before using benzoyl peroxide wash:

Some medical conditions may interact with benzoyl peroxide wash. 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 an open wound or damaged skin at the application site

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with benzoyl peroxide wash. However, no specific interactions with benzoyl peroxide wash are known at this time.

Ask your health care provider if benzoyl peroxide wash 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 wash:

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

  • Wash your hands well before and after using benzoyl peroxide wash
  • This kit includes a benzoyl peroxide wash and a soap-free cleansing lotion.
  • To use the wash, shake well before each use. Wet the affected area and apply the wash. Gently rub to form a lather. Rinse with water and pat dry with a clean cloth.
  • To use the lotion, shake well before each use. Apply a generous amount to the skin and gently rub in. Remove excess lotion with a soft cloth or tissue. If you are using the lotion with water, apply it to the skin and then moisten the skin with warm water. Gently rub to form a lather. Rinse with warm water and pat dry with a soft cloth.
  • Use benzoyl peroxide wash on a regular schedule to get the most benefit from it. Continue to use it even if your skin appears to improve. Do not miss any doses.
  • If you miss a dose of benzoyl peroxide wash, 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 wash.

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 wash as you were told by your doctor or read the package label. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.
  • Benzoyl peroxide wash is for external use only. Do not get it in your eyes, nose, or mouth. If you get it in your eyes, rinse at once with cool tap water.
  • Benzoyl peroxide wash may begin to work within 3 weeks, but you may not see the full effect for 8 to 12 weeks. If you symptoms do not get better within 3 weeks or if they get worse, check with your doctor.
  • Do NOT use more often or for longer than prescribed without checking with your doctor.
  • Talk with your doctor before you use any other medicines or cleansers on your skin.
  • Benzoyl peroxide wash may cause bleaching. Avoid contact with hair, fabrics, or carpeting.
  • Benzoyl peroxide wash may cause harm if it is swallowed. If you may have taken it by mouth, contact your poison control center or emergency room right away.
  • Benzoyl peroxide wash 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: It is not known if benzoyl peroxide wash can cause harm to the fetus. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using benzoyl peroxide wash while you are pregnant. It is not known if benzoyl peroxide wash is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use benzoyl peroxide wash, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of benzoyl peroxide wash:

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:

Dryness; minor irritation, itching, stinging, peeling, or redness.

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); burning; severe or persistent irritation, itching, peeling, dryness, or redness of the skin; swelling.

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.

Proper storage of benzoyl peroxide wash:

Store benzoyl peroxide wash at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Keep benzoyl peroxide wash out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about benzoyl peroxide wash, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Benzoyl peroxide wash 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 wash 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 wash. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to benzoyl peroxide wash. 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 wash.

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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