Skip to main content

Sulconazole (Monograph)

Brand name: Exelderm
Drug class: Azoles
ATC class: D01AC09
VA class: DE102
Chemical name: (±)-1-[2-[[(4-Chlorophenyl)methyl]thio]-2-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)ethyl]-1H-imidazole mononitrate
Molecular formula: C18H15Cl3N2S•HNO3
CAS number: 61318-91-0


Antifungal; azole (imidazole derivative).

Uses for Sulconazole


Treatment of tinea corporis (body ringworm) and tinea cruris (jock itch) caused by Epidermophyton floccosum, Microsporum canis, Trichophyton mentagrophytes, or T. rubrum.

Treatment of tinea pedis (athlete’s foot) caused by E. floccosum, M. canis, T. mentagrophytes, or T. rubrum.

Topical antifungals usually effective for treatment of uncomplicated tinea corporis or tinea cruris. An oral antifungal may be necessary when tinea corporis or tinea cruris is extensive, dermatophyte folliculitis is present, infection does not respond to topical therapy, or patient is immunocompromised because of coexisting disease or concomitant therapy.

Topical antifungals usually effective for treatment of uncomplicated tinea pedis. An oral antifungal may be necessary for treatment of hyperkeratotic areas on the soles, for chronic moccasin-type (dry-type) tinea pedis, and for tinea unguium (fingernail or toenail dermatophyte infections, onychomycosis).

Pityriasis (Tinea) Versicolor

Treatment of pityriasis (tinea) versicolor caused by Malassezia furfur (Pityrosporum orbiculare or P. ovale).

Topical antifungals usually effective; an oral antifungal (with or without a topical antifungal) may be necessary in patients who have extensive or severe infections or failed to respond to or have frequent relapses with topical therapy.

Cutaneous Candidiasis

Treatment of cutaneous candidiasis [off-label] caused by Candida albicans.

Sulconazole Dosage and Administration


Topical Administration

Apply topically to the skin as a 1% cream or solution.

Do not apply to the eye or administer orally or intravaginally.

Apply a sufficient amount of cream or solution; rub gently into affected area and immediately surrounding healthy skin.



Tinea Corporis or Tinea Cruris

Apply 1% cream or solution once or twice daily for 3 weeks.

If clinical improvement does not occur after 4–6 weeks of treatment, reevaluate diagnosis.

Tinea Pedis

Apply 1% cream twice daily for 4 weeks.

If clinical improvement does not occur after 4–6 weeks of treatment, reevaluate diagnosis. Chronic moccasin-type (dry-type) tinea pedis may require 4–8 weeks or longer.

Pityriasis (Tinea) Versicolor

Apply 1% cream or solution once or twice daily for 3 weeks.

If clinical improvement does not occur after 4–6 weeks of treatment, reevaluate diagnosis.

Special Populations

No special population dosage recommendations at this time.

Cautions for Sulconazole


Known hypersensitivity to sulconazole or any ingredient in the formulation.



Application Precautions

For external use only. Use only for topical application to the skin; not for ophthalmic or intravaginal use.

Fetal/Neonatal Morbidity and Mortality

Embryotoxicity demonstrated in animals receiving oral sulconazole.

Sensitivity Reactions

Hypersensitivity Reactions

Contact dermatitis reported following topical application of sulconazole or other imidazole-derivative azole antifungals.

If irritation or sensitivity occurs, discontinue the drug and initiate appropriate therapy.

Possible cross-sensitization among the imidazoles.

General Precautions

Selection and Use of Antifungals

Prior to initiation of treatment, confirm diagnosis by direct microscopic examination of scrapings from infected tissue mounted in potassium hydroxide (KOH) or by culture.

Specific Populations


Category C. (See Fetal/Neonatal Morbidity and Mortality under Cautions.)


Not known whether distributed into milk. Caution advised.

Pediatric Use

Safety and efficacy not established.

Geriatric Use

Insufficient data from clinical studies to determine whether patients ≥65 years of age respond differently than younger adults. Clinical experience to date has not identified differences in responses between geriatric patients and younger adults.

Common Adverse Effects

Pruritus, burning, stinging, erythema.

Drug Interactions

Weak inducer of CYP1A1 and CYP2B1.

Drugs Metabolized by Hepatic Microsomal Enzymes

Potential pharmacokinetic interaction with drugs metabolized by CYP1A1 or 2B1; interaction unlikely with topical administration of sulconazole since only low amounts absorbed following topical application to skin.

Sulconazole Pharmacokinetics



Low amounts of sulconazole are absorbed systemically following topical application to skin.



Not known whether sulconazole is distributed into milk.


Elimination Route

Systemically absorbed drug is excreted in urine (6.7%) and feces (2%).







≤40°C; protect from light.

Actions and Spectrum

Advice to Patients


Excipients in commercially available drug preparations may have clinically important effects in some individuals; consult specific product labeling for details.

Please refer to the ASHP Drug Shortages Resource Center for information on shortages of one or more of these preparations.

Sulconazole Nitrate


Dosage Forms


Brand Names





Exelderm (with propylene glycol)




Exelderm (with propylene glycol)


AHFS DI Essentials™. © Copyright 2024, Selected Revisions July 1, 2007. American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 4500 East-West Highway, Suite 900, Bethesda, Maryland 20814.

† Off-label: Use is not currently included in the labeling approved by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Reload page with references included