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User Reviews for Efudex to treat Actinic Keratosis

Efudex has an average rating of 7.3 out of 10 from a total of 32 ratings for the treatment of Actinic Keratosis. 63% of users who reviewed this medication reported a positive effect, while 22% reported a negative effect.

Efudex Rating Summary

7.3/10 average rating

32 ratings from 37 user reviews.

Compare all 11 medications used in the treatment of Actinic Keratosis.

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Reviews for Efudex

Cedric · Taken for less than 1 month November 9, 2020

“57 year old male, brought up in South Africa, lived in Australia and 30+ years in the military with sunny deployments. Prev suffered two SCC's and Bowen's disease. I'm in day 25 of Efudex treatment, stopped applying the cream after 21 days. My face is very red and itchy, it's amazing how the cream identifies areas of damage. It's been tough at times, sleepless nights with burning/itching. Strangely when I stopped applying the cream I suffered stomach acid, unsure if its relayed. The biggest challenge is to persevere to the end. I use Aquaphore from Amazon to soothe the itching. Good luck to everyone!”

10 / 10
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Anonymous · Taken for less than 1 month July 29, 2020

“I so appreciate all your comments. I am day 21 of Efudex and my GP wants me to keep going another week. I am applying to my nose, hands and forearms. My nose is a beacon as is the area around it. Thank goodness for COVID isolation as it couldn’t be happening at a better time. I was going to stop today but after reading everyone’s experience I will keep going for another week. Thank you”

9 / 10
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Jojo October 19, 2019

“I am a 60 year old with very fair skin and blue eyes who grew up at the beach. I was regularly burned to a blister stage every year. I had many keratosis burned off from age 30 to 50. Finally advised to use Efudex. I have completed treatments on my face 5 times now over the course of these 10 years. I have an unusually mild reaction each time. In fact, I have to use it for 40 days to get the full benefit. So, you never know how your own skin will react. The dermatologists have been amazed at the length of time it takes me to get a reaction. But for the chest area, the reaction is incredibly painful, red, and fast. Maybe the constant freezing of those places on my face helped more than I know? In any case, Maybe it could be recommended to try a small area before using on the entire face. The end results are very good and I would not let fear keep you from trying this.”

10 / 10
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Gdsangl5 · Taken for less than 1 month September 13, 2019

“Growing up at the Jersey Shore and summers spent at Fl Beaches, I fell in love with the warmth of the sun, and a healthy tan. At 55, the sun made my chest bubble up, and my legs reverse tan. It is no surprise that I had actinic keratosis multiplying fast. I was prescribed Efudex 5% for my chest, neck and face. I had no idea it was topical Chemo. What? I googled everything Efudux, bought Aveeno, vanicreme, Aquaphor, asked for anxiety med for my mounting fears and took a personal leave from work. Its Day 13, saw Dr., I'm done. I did look beat up. In the afternoon insane itching.. tap tap. Many more dead lesions, surface and crust up. I'm using cortizone, and aquaphor on the corners and for lesions around my lips. I will be doing this for years to come peeling back the many layers of damage. It has not been as bad as it was for others. It's uncomfortable yet tolerable, and much better than the alternative. The knife or Cancer. Oddly, I feel healthier and fortunate to be given this chance.”

8 / 10
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Tiny704 · Taken for 2 to 5 years October 12, 2015

“I am a 70 year old male who suffers from Actinick Keratosis from exposure to the harsh rays of the sun. Efudex is a fantastic product. Does exactly what is claimed. Make sure that you wash your hands completely after each application. Do not get it on your lips or you will experience great discomfort, (cracked and bleeding lips). Once you have completed the process (twice a day for 21 days), use Hydroval Cream 0.2% to assist in the healing process (works great).”

10 / 10
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Lee · Taken for less than 1 month May 15, 2020

“I am on day 15 of the Efudex cream. I was terrified to start. I was actually prescribed the cream two other times and chickened out due to the photos that I had seen on YouTube. I am doing very well so far. It is super tight and red around my mouth, very hard to smile. I have spots all over my forehead and a few on my cheeks. It’s always a shock to see my face in the mirror. But without looking at myself it feels like I put on one of those peel off face masks just tight. So far I sleep just fine. I don’t however use Vaseline I use calendula it’s for burns and has worked well. I have also used makeup when I had to go out in public. It is definitely convenient being in lockdown because everyone is wearing a mask so it hides my super red chin. I have 6 more days of cream, I am taking this one day at a time. The only side effect so far that I have had is two different days I felt extremely tired.”

8 / 10
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Philip · Taken for less than 1 month June 8, 2020

“Male 52, having had ongoing AK issues on scalp and face, regularly frozen with dry ice over past several years. Started using Efudex 2x daily on scalp for past 3 weeks; some mild irritation but not at all problematic; after 2 weeks crusty areas fell away (I did slightly agitate which I know I shouldn't) and will continue to use for another 1-2 weeks. So far so good, material improvement in scalp and tenderness has subsided substantially. Now starting to try small area on forehead below hairline, before doing entire face...just to see if reaction is very different, but this is just SO much better than having intermittent freezing. Will definitely do a second cycle on scalp after a break. Highly recommend based on 3 weeks' usage. Will update further after using on face. Thanks for all the other posts !”

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Isobel · Taken for less than 1 month May 29, 2020

“I am 70, with chestnut hair, fair skin and blue eyes. My doctor diagnosed actinic keratosis on a small lesion on my face. He recommended Efudix twice a day for 3 weeks. I used a cotton bud to apply the cream as it seemed easier to apply it thinly that way than with my finger. During the first two weeks the lesion started to become red and enlarged slightly. Towards the end of the second and throughout the third week yellowy crusts started to form and the lesion felt tender and raw. If I went out in the sun I put a small plaster over it for protection. After the treatment a scab formed over the whole area that took two weeks to fall off. Then new skin appeared and I have been applying Calendula to aid the recovery. I am left with a pink streak which hopefully will fade with time. Until then I will use a 'hide the blemish' make-up which I would think a man could also use, if need be. Overall very pleased with the result.”

10 / 10
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nwfmike January 18, 2019

“After years of sun damage, my whole face lit up like a Christmas tree full of red lights within 1 week of twice daily application. Shaving: No problem. Use a sharp razor and light pressure with a mild gel cream Washing: Try Simple Water Boost Micellar facial gel wash. Great stuff. cleans your face and does not leave it dry OR oily. Does not irritate the burning skin. Still use it every day to clean my face. Lubrication: Try Neutrogena Hydro Boost water gel. Not cheap, but you don't need much. Worked great, no greasy feeling. Used a chilled aloe mask at night during last week. Timeline: Should be able to finish in 3 weeks of twice daily. Still pretty bad for a week after treatment with first 2 layers of skin dried up and peeled away. Had another 2 weeks of peelings. After that, skin was super smooth but still red in some areas. Took another month for most of that to fade away. Definitely recommend using Efudex. It's obviously not fun, but produces great results.”

10 / 10
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Florida Redhead January 20, 2020

“I am grateful for Efudex, although the treatment is quite difficult, because it is effective, comprehensive and empowering! Skin cancer surgeries are another kind of difficult I hope to avoid! I’ve used Efudex three times on my face...the first two weeks are the easiest, the second two are more challenging. Plan to stay at home week 4 and the first week of healing. If you are using around your mouth, it will be hard to comfortably eat and drink. Eat soft foods and use a straw. With supervision, my doctor directed me to use Efudex on my lips, which was the most challenging of all applications! Because lips are a more sensitive area, I only needed to apply for 7-10 days....I made it to 8 and could do no more. No doubt Efudex is challenging to use, but it beats multiple surgeries where hunks of your face are removed! I plan to use in the future where issues emerge....because the “bad” cancer causing cells will keep appearing. And, now I can do something when they do!”

10 / 10
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wheeler dealer · Taken for less than 1 month January 18, 2020

“I was prescribed Efudex for basal carcinoma on my leg. Used twice a day for 3 weeks. Excellent result. Now 6 weeks on and just left with red area which I assume will fade with time. I was also told to treat AK on my face, used cream once a day for 4 weeks (stopped 3 days short). As with other comments made, I was not informed by the dr that I would look absolutely monstrous. Immediate reddening of the entire face, followed by scabbing. Still at the scabbing stage. I could get a part in a horror movie. The cream seemed to migrate towards my eyes where I had not applied it. Would I have used Efudix if I had known what I would look like - probably wouldn’t have had the courage as people stare when I am out and about. Determined to continue with my life as normal. Think it’s better than it turning into cancer at a later stage. I await the results with bated breath, although I think this may be many months away.”

7 / 10
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Annie · Taken for 1 to 6 months March 3, 2019

“One of the most painful experiences of my entire life. I thought childbirth was the worse pain I ever experienced, but this pain is indescribable. I'm at 5 weeks now. Hope to come off soon. Just opening my mouth to try eat is excruciating. My Dr never warned me about any of this, nor did he tell me I was going to look like a monster.”

10 / 10
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Nina · Taken for less than 1 month January 8, 2020

“I had a very tiny split on the side of my nose that wouldn’t heal. It was BCC. It was surgically removed. One of the most horrible experiences, emotionally. I used Efudex a year ago for a spot that appeared on my chest. It worked well, although painful and itchy. I am now using it on my forehead, nose and upper lip area. I was shocked at how many spots appeared! Extremely painful when touched, but otherwise just a little itchy on occasion. I am grateful for all the comments here....it gives me courage to keep going. Week 2.....”

7 / 10
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S · Taken for less than 1 month May 8, 2020

“I chose to apply my treatment over 2 periods separated by 6 months. half of face and right arm this time and in 6 months will do the other half. 53 years old, scottish descent growing up in Queensland, Australia. Too late to chip my parents about that. Skin: Fitzpatrick Type 1. I had a good (severe) reaction within 3 days, applying three times per day against the advice of 2 times per day. Within 1 week, yellowish crusting, weeping etc. kept it up for two weeks in total, then stopped and another 2 weeks to recover. Good result. Pain intense, and I was fortunate enough to have a GP that prescribed some decent pain killers and a mild sedative (5mg Diazepam) to help me get through the night. Tried to persevere without the drugs but they proved to be a god send,. Would recommend to do this treatment in Winter and off work or working from home. (Trivial note: started treatment at the same time as working from home due to Covid-19)”

9 / 10
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Granny · Taken for less than 1 month January 15, 2020

“I am using efudex and the spots were getting raised and crusty as expected but then it got damp in the shower and came off with a bit of bleeding. It has settled down now . But I was worried if this has set back the process. I would appreciate your comments.”

8 / 10
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Ding Dong · Taken for less than 1 month May 25, 2020

“I am on my 18th day of using Efudix. I am only using on my tip of nose. This morning a horrible crusty scab of blistering came off and it is now red and raw. I am still using as I was told to stop on day 21. I am seeing my doctor tomorrow to see how things are going and whether I should carry on for longer. No pain, just a sort tingling and look like Rudolph the Reindeer, but coping fine. Sleep well and no real side affects.”

8 / 10
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cooloperator · Taken for less than 1 month April 15, 2016

“I was prescribed Efudex to treat various Actinic Keratoses on my forehead and balding front pate. Firstly my overall rating is that the treatment is very effective and I now have a beautiful forehead of smooth skin after 2 weeks 2 days of treatment and 2 weeks of recovery post treatment. It may be that my skin damage was mild. In any event I found the process quite bearable.I applied the cream sparingly night and morning and there was little to see for 3 or 4 days, skin then reddened and peeled/flaked - no ulceration or discharge. Although unsightly (looked like a bright rash) as a male I was still happy to go out and socialise. I used my wife's hair colourant plastic protective gloves but still washed hands thoroughly after use. Happy.”

9 / 10
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Snigel October 22, 2020

“My GP saw some actinic keratosis on my head and said I should mention this at my appointment a dermatologist. I am using fluorouracil 5% .The regime was 4 weeks once a day, followed by 3 weeks healing followed by 4 weeks. The 2nd treatment is to reveal and fix any actinic keratosis missed in the first. I have nearly finished the ALL treatment, on my head - I am bald. I am 78 years old. The treatment on the head was itchy and at the end painful- the 2nd treatment did not show any remaining AKs. I could see that some of the 'rash' raised by the drug extended to my face so I started a treatment there. This was more painful - particularly round the mouth and cheeks as these move if you smile or speak. I am in the healing phase now and will start a second treatment in 2 weeks. COVID has meant that my scary face has not scared the neighbourhood!! This was free on the NHS (National Health Service UK)- they are great”

10 / 10
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Cardigran · Taken for less than 1 month January 5, 2021

“I was prescribed Efudix for a spot on my cheek that refused to heal and would crack and bleed if stretching the skin to wash or apply makeup. I have fair skin. I was told it was pre cancerous . Applied the cream as directed but after two weeks treatment I started to become increasingly unwell, and by the end of 28 days had horrible gastric and bowel symptoms. I even had a test to make sure that I was not missing DPD as I was so badly affected even two weeks after stopping treatment . I recovered thankfully and the spot on my cheek healed well, but I wouldn't go through it again. I'd opt for cryosurgery or surgery even if it left a small scar . This cream is seriously toxic to pets incidentally, so please be very careful with it .”

4 / 10
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Dave · Taken for less than 1 month August 18, 2020

“My dermatologist said apply on face twice daily for 10-12 days. Well, my skin is super sensitive. After 2 days I was red, itching, and in pain, so I stopped at the end of day 5. I’m at day 9 and look like I have severe sunburn with scaling, pealing, oozing, and burning. I am hopeful I’m about to turn a corner toward clearing up. Argh! It worked great on my legs after 2 week’s treatment. My facial skin, another story.”

9 / 10
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In severe pain now · Taken for less than 1 month April 8, 2020

“I spent years in the sun scuba diving and hiking in Mexico and Arizona. For years I've constantly had to use lip balm because my lips were so dry. I tried many products and they never worked. My lips would crack and peel all the time. Just recently I got diagnosed with Actinic Chelitis. I have been prescribed a Effudex 5% once a day for 3 to 4 weeks. I am at Week 2 and experiencing severe, almost unbearable, burning pain because of deep sores with massive amounts of oozing and crusting and now bleeding, tightness and severe dryness. I will try to endure another week but I think I would rather surgery any day than this.”

3 / 10
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WJC · Taken for less than 1 month April 7, 2020

“I used Flouroplex about 15 years ago on my chest and face, they were both a mess for 5-6 weeks, but the treatment is worth is. I started seeing the same damage on my chest and face and my DR prescribed Efudex 5%. It works the same and when I spread it on the chest little red spots started showing, then more and more. I look like my chest has the measles. Some are large spots that swell and ooze. It is very itchy with prickly pain, now in the third week, hard to sleep. I'm going to stop at the weeks end for a full 4 weeks. I also treated some specific spots on the side of my face but it just got very red, turned blackish, I stopped that at 3 weeks and it is healing nicely with the help of vaseline. I have not had any side effects with vomiting or headaches as others have reported. Once my chest starts healing I'm going to try some additional spots on my face. It is not pleasant but what chemo treatment would be? The alternative is surgery.”

10 / 10
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Pip · Taken for less than 1 month March 23, 2021

“After my 11th basal cell carcinoma, my dermatologist found some actinic keratosis on my nose and above my upper lip. I have been using fluorouracil for seven days. Today is the first day the redness has really appeared, especially above my upper lip. My skin is starting to itch and burn, mild right now. I am supposed to apply once daily for two weeks, then take 2 to 3 weeks off, and apply again daily for two weeks. I had one basal cell carcinoma on my lower leg two years ago. I used the Aldara cream on that, and did not like it at all. I had systemic side effects and burning, painful skin for 23 weeks. I am hoping this experience with fluorouracil will be better.”

10 / 10
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rasher · Taken for less than 1 month October 23, 2019

“Had to stop using Efudix on my face after 2 weeks and 2 days because of pain, dizziness, and mouth sores. My face was a fright, bright red all over as the cream seemed to creep" when used . One week later the rash has settled and the pain has subsided but I fear it will be weeks before I return to my normal look. I have dry flakey scabs on my face where scabs were not evident before Efudix. I regret using this cream on my face. My chest looks like I have been blasted with both barrels of a shotgun. Red welts everywhere as I dressed the whole area with Efudix as advised by DR. Not really painful but starting to itch. I am 3 weeks into this area, I feel I could stop now but will give it a few more days. The jury is still out.................”

3 / 10
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marlin May 1, 2020

“I grew up in Canberra, Australia. Sunburn every year, never wore a hat, didn't know about sunburn cream. I started using Efudex when I was 38. I'm on my fourth facial using it. I can last 16 days at the most. I would be so painful if I used it for 28 days. I know it's time to stop when it is so itchy that I don't get a single minute of sleep at night. I have to stay at home for 3 or 4 weeks - I scare too many people otherwise. Before bed I have to take mild sleeping tablets (Restavit) and ibuprofen. I used to use Lucas Pawpaw ointment at night, but it's too thick and itchy. I use Dermeze treatment ointment. Lucas' is good for recovery. I have to wash the Efudex off before I go to sleep - otherwise I can feel its horrible burning all night. If I accidentally touch the treated spot and then rub my eyes, they get swollen for days. I hate the treatment (0/10) - torturers could use it. But I love the results (10/10). My skin feels so good for 4 years.”

7 / 10
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This information is NOT intended to endorse any particular medication. While these reviews might be helpful, they are not a substitute for the expertise, knowledge and judgement of healthcare practitioners.

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