Hydrocortisone/ neomycin/ polymyxin b solution

Generic Name: hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b (HYE-droe-KOR-ti-sone/NEE-oh-MYE-sin/POL-ee-MIX-in)
Brand Name: Examples include Cortisporin and Cortomycin

Hydrocortisone/ neomycin/ polymyxin b solution is used for:

Treating infections of the ear caused by certain bacteria. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution is a combination of 2 antibiotics and a corticosteroid. The antibiotics work by slowing the growth of, or killing, sensitive bacteria. The corticosteroid reduces inflammation.

Do NOT use hydrocortisone/ neomycin/ polymyxin b solution if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution, to other aminoglycosides (eg, gentamicin), or to other corticosteroids (eg, prednisone)
  • you have a viral infection of the ear (eg, herpes simplex, chickenpox, shingles)
  • you have a perforated ear drum

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

Slideshow: View Frightful (But Dead Serious) Drug Side Effects

Before using hydrocortisone/ neomycin/ polymyxin b solution:

Some medical conditions may interact with hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution. 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 asthma

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution. Because little, if any, of hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution is absorbed into the blood, the risk of it interacting with another medicine is low.

Ask your health care provider if hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution 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 hydrocortisone/ neomycin/ polymyxin b solution:

Use hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution is only for the ear. Do not get it in your eyes, nose, or mouth. If you get hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution in your eyes, rinse immediately with cool tap water.
  • Wash your hands before and after using hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution.
  • Wash and dry the outer ear with a sterile cotton applicator.
  • Lie down or tilt your head so that the affected ear faces up. For adults, gently pull the earlobe up and back to straighten the ear canal. For children, gently pull the earlobe down and back to straighten the ear canal. Drop the medicine into the ear canal. Keep the ear facing up for several minutes so the medicine can run to the bottom of the ear canal. A clean cotton plug may be gently inserted into the ear canal to prevent medicine from leaking out. To prevent germs from getting into your medicine, do not touch the applicator to any surface, including the ear. Keep the container tightly closed.
  • To clear up your infection completely, use hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution for the full course of treatment. Keep using it even if you feel better in a few days.
  • If you miss a dose of hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution, 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 hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution.

Important safety information:

  • Hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution only works against bacteria; it does not treat fungal or viral infections.
  • Be sure to use hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution 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.
  • Long-term or repeated use of hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution may cause a second infection. Tell your doctor if signs of a second infection occur. Your medicine may need to be changed to treat this.
  • If your symptoms do not get better within 7 days or if they get worse, check with your doctor.
  • Do NOT take more than the recommended dose or use for longer than 7 days without checking with your doctor.
  • Do not use hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution for other ear conditions at a later time.
  • Some of these products contain sulfites. Sulfites may cause an allergic reaction in some patients (eg, asthma patients). If you have ever had an allergic reaction to sulfites, ask your pharmacist if your product has sulfites in it.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 2 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 hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution while you are pregnant. It is not known if hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution is found in breast milk after topical use. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of hydrocortisone/ neomycin/ polymyxin b solution:

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, temporary burning or stinging.

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

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); acne-like rash; changes in hearing; decreased urination; dry, scaly, or peeling skin at the application site; continued burning or stinging; excessive hair growth; inflamed hair follicles; inflammation around the mouth; loss of hearing; muscle weakness; pain, redness, itching, irritation, or swelling not present when you began using hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution; thinning, softening, or discoloration of the skin; unusual weight gain, especially in the face.

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 hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution:

Store hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution between 59 and 77 degrees F (15 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Keep the container tightly closed. Keep hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution 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 hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution 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 hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution. 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 hydrocortisone/neomycin/polymyxin b solution.

Issue Date: July 2, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.001
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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