Generic name: Hydroquinone [ HYE-droe-kwin-one ]
Brand names: Aclaro, Alphaquin HP, AMBI Fade, Blanche, EpiQuin Micro, ... show all 18 brands Esoterica Daytime, Esoterica Facial, Esoterica Fade Nighttime, Esoterica Sensitive Skin, Exuviance Lightening Complex, Hydroquinone Time Release, Melpaque HP, Melquin 3, NeoStrata HQ Skin Lightening, Remergent HQ, Skin Bleaching, Skin Bleaching-Sunscreen, TL Hydroquinone
Drug class: Topical depigmenting agents
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Mar 7, 2023.
Uses of Hydroquinone:
- It is used to lighten the skin where there are changes in color.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Hydroquinone?
- If you have an allergy to hydroquinone or any other part of hydroquinone.
- If you are allergic to hydroquinone; any part of hydroquinone; or any other drugs, foods, or substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had.
This medicine may interact with other drugs or health problems.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take hydroquinone with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Hydroquinone?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take hydroquinone. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- After stopping hydroquinone, some of the color change may come back.
- If you have a sulfite allergy, talk with your doctor.
- This medicine may cause harm if swallowed. If hydroquinone is swallowed, call a doctor or poison control center right away.
- Avoid sun, sunlamps, and tanning beds. Use sunscreen and wear clothing and eyewear that protects you from the sun.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using hydroquinone while you are pregnant.
- Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.
How is this medicine (Hydroquinone) best taken?
Use hydroquinone as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- Do not take hydroquinone by mouth. Use on your skin only. Keep out of your mouth, nose, and eyes (may burn).
- Wash your hands before and after use. Do not wash your hands after use if putting this on your hand.
- Clean affected part before use. Make sure to dry well.
- Put a thin layer on the affected skin and rub in gently.
- Practice good skin care and avoid the sun.
- Do not use coverings (bandages, dressings, make-up) unless told to do so by the doctor.
- Do not use on irritated skin.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Put on a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
- If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
- Do not put on 2 doses or extra doses.
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Very bad skin irritation.
- Change in color of skin to blue-black.
- Blisters or sores.
What are some other side effects of Hydroquinone?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Dry skin.
- Skin irritation.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at https://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Hydroquinone?
- Store at room temperature.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about hydroquinone, please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
More about hydroquinone topical
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- Drug class: topical depigmenting agents
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