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What is fluocinonide cream good for?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on July 13, 2023.

Official answer


Fluocinonide is a potent topical steroid medicine used for the skin to treat:

  • inflammation and itching caused by plaque psoriasis,
  • atopic dermatitis (eczema)
  • or other skin conditions.

Fluocinonide can relieve symptoms such as:

  • pain,
  • itching,
  • redness,
  • crusting,
  • and scaling.

It can also be effective for local symptoms due severe insect bites (e.g. mosquitoes, bed bugs), skin allergies or rashes.

Fluocinonide is in a class of medicines called corticosteroids (a “steroid”). It works by preventing the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation, redness, and itching.

How does fluocinonide come?

Fluocinonide comes as a brand name product known as Vanos, but it is also available generically. In generic form, it comes as a topical solution, or in a cream, gel or ointment. It comes in various strengths ranging from 0.01% to 0.1%. Be sure not to mix up the name fluocinoNIDE with another product called fluocinoLONE, also a topical steroid.

Vanos cream and the generic cream form comes as 0.1% strength. Fluocinonide 0.05% also comes in a generic topical solution, cream, ointment or gel. Do not cover with an occlusive dressing or bandage unless directed to do so by your doctor. Do not apply to inflamed, wounded or bleeding areas of the skin.

Higher strengths products, such as the 0.1% agents, should not be used on the face, groin, or axillae (armpit).

While the brand name products are very expensive, the generic products, when available, are quite affordable and are probably covered by insurance. Your cost will vary based on your copay or if you are paying the cash price. Online discount coupons may help to reduce your price if you are paying out-of-pocket.

Bottom Line

Fluocinonide is a topical corticosteroid medicine used on the skin to treat inflammation and itching caused by plaque psoriasis, eczema or other skin conditions.

It can relieve symptoms such as redness, itching, dryness and scaling.

Fluocinonide comes as a brand name product (Vanos 0.1%) or as a generic option in a topical solution, cream, ointment, and gel.

This is not all the information you need to know about fluocinonide for safe and effective use. Review the full fluocinonide information here, and discuss this information with your doctor or other health care provider.


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