Generic Name: clindamycin (KLIN-da-MYE-sin)
Brand Name: Examples include Cleocin T and Clindamax
Clindamycin gel is used for:
Treating severe acne. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Clindamycin gel is a topical lincomycin antibiotic. It works by killing sensitive bacteria that cause acne and reducing the amount of free fatty acids that irritate the skin surface.
Do NOT use clindamycin gel if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in clindamycin gel or to lincomycin
- you have Crohn disease, antibiotic-associated colitis, or ulcerative colitis
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using clindamycin gel:
Some medical conditions may interact with clindamycin gel. 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 a gastrointestinal (bowel) disease or diarrhea
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with clindamycin gel. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Nondepolarizing muscle relaxants (eg, vecuronium) or succinylcholine because their actions and the risk of their side effects may be increased by clindamycin gel
- Erythromycin because it may decrease clindamycin gel's effectiveness
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if clindamycin gel 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 clindamycin gel:
Use clindamycin gel as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Clindamycin gel is for topical use on the skin only.
- Clean and dry the affected area. Cover the affected and surrounding area with a thin film of medicine.
- Clindamycin gel works best if it is used at the same time each day.
- Continue to use clindamycin gel even if your condition improves. Do not miss any doses.
- If you miss a dose of clindamycin gel, 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 clindamycin gel.
Important safety information:
- Clindamycin gel 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.
- Several weeks may pass before you see improvement in your acne. Continue using clindamycin gel for the full time recommended by your doctor.
- Be sure to use clindamycin gel for the full course of treatment. If you do not, the medicine may not clear up your infection completely. The bacteria could also become less sensitive to this or other medicines. This could make the infection harder to treat in the future.
- Do not get clindamycin gel in your eyes or on the inside of your nose or mouth. If you accidentally get the medicine in your eye, immediately flush with a large amount of cool tap water.
- If severe diarrhea, stomach pain or cramping, or bloody stools develop during treatment or within several months after treatment with clindamycin gel, check with your doctor or pharmacist right away. Do not treat it without first checking with your doctor.
- Talk with your doctor before you use any other medicines or cleansers on your skin.
- Clindamycin gel should not be used 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 clindamycin gel while you are pregnant. It is not known if clindamycin gel is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking clindamycin gel.
Possible side effects of clindamycin gel:
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:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Dryness; itching; oiliness or oily skin.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); blood or mucus in stools; bloody or severe diarrhea; stomach cramps or pain; swelling, redness, burning, or peeling of your 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. Clindamycin gel may be harmful if swallowed.Proper storage of clindamycin gel:
Store clindamycin gel at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C), in a tightly closed container. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Protect from freezing. Keep clindamycin gel out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about clindamycin gel, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Clindamycin gel 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 clindamycin gel 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 clindamycin gel. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to clindamycin gel. 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 clindamycin gel.
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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