Generic Name: azelaic acid topical (AZ eh LAY ik AS id)
Brand Names: Azelex, Finacea, Finevin

What is Finacea?

Finacea is a topical gel containing azelaic acid, a naturally occurring acid. Azelaic acid helps the skin to renew itself more quickly and therefore reduces pimple and blackhead formation. It also helps to kill the bacteria that cause acne and rosacea.

Finacea is used to treat mild to moderate rosacea (a skin condition marked by red eruptions, usually on the cheeks and nose.)

Finacea may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important information

You should not use Finacea if you are allergic to azelaic acid or propylene glycol. Avoid getting Finacea in your eyes, nose, mouth, rectum, or vagina. Do not use on sunburned, windburned, dry, chapped, irritated, or broken skin. Wait until these conditions have healed before using this medication. Do not cover the area after applying Finacea. Doing so could cause too much medicine to be absorbed by your body and could be harmful.

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

It may take up 4 weeks or longer before your symptoms improve. Keep using Finacea as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 12 weeks of treatment.

If you have excessive burning, dryness, or irritation, ask your doctor about using Finacea once daily.

Before using Finacea

You should not use Finacea gel if you are allergic to azelaic acid or propylene glycol.

FDA pregnancy category B. Finacea is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether azelaic acid passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use Finacea gel without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

See also: Pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)

How should I use Finacea Gel?

Use Finacea gel exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Wash your hands before and after applying Finacea gel.

Clean the affected area with a mild soap or a soapless cleansing lotion and pat dry with a soft towel. Apply the medication as directed.

Finacea gel is usually applied twice daily, in the morning and at bedtime. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Do not cover the affected area after applying Finacea gel. Doing so could cause too much medicine to be absorbed by the body and could be harmful.

It may take up 4 weeks or longer before your symptoms improve. Keep using Finacea gel as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 12 weeks of treatment.

If you have excessive burning, dryness, or irritation, ask your doctor about using Finacea once daily.

Store Finacea gel at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Apply the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include some of the serious side effects listed in this medication guide.

What should I avoid?

Avoid getting Finacea gel in your eyes, nose, mouth, rectum, or vagina. If this does happen, rinse with water. Do not use on sunburned, windburned, dry, chapped, irritated, or broken skin. Wait until these conditions have healed before using this medication.

Avoid using other medications on the areas you treat with Finacea unless your doctor tells you to.

Avoid using skin products that can cause irritation, such as harsh soaps or skin cleansers, or skin products with alcohol, spices, astringents, or lime.

Your doctor may recommend avoiding spicy foods, hot foods or drinks, alcoholic beverages and other foods or beverages that may cause flushing or redness of the skin during treatment with Finacea.

Finacea side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Finacea gel: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using this medication and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • severe burning, stinging, or warmth;

  • severe itching or tingling;

  • severe redness, dryness, peeling, or other irritation; or

  • changes in skin color.

Less serious Finacea side effects are more likely, and you may have none at all.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

What other drugs will affect Finacea?

It is not likely that other drugs you take orally or inject will have an effect on topically applied Finacea. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about Finacea.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2014 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.04. Revision Date: 2013-12-05, 5:52:02 PM.

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