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Generic name: bacitracin and polymyxin B topicalBAS-i-TRAY-sin-and-POL-ee-MIX-in-B ]
Brand names: Double Antibiotic, Polysporin, Simply Neosporin
Drug class: Topical antibiotics

Medically reviewed by on Aug 16, 2022. Written by Cerner Multum.

What is Polysporin?

Polysporin (for the skin) is a combination medicine used to help prevent infections from cuts, scraps, and/or burns.

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


Follow all directions on the label and package. Use exactly as directed.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use Polysporin if you are allergic to it.

Do not use Polysporin in your eyes and over large areas of your body.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if Polysporin is safe to use if you have:

  • deep or puncture wounds;

  • animal bites; or

  • serious burns.

Ask a doctor before using this medicine if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Do not give this medicine to a child without medical advice.

How should I use Polysporin?

Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor.

Wash your hands before and after applying Polysporin.

Polysporin is applied on the affected area 1 to 3 times daily. Clean the affected area before using this medicine. The area where the medicine is applied may be covered with a sterile bandage.

Do not use Polysporin longer than 1 week unless your doctor tells you to.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Apply the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not apply two doses at one time.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222 if anyone has accidentally swallowed the medicine.

What should I avoid while using Polysporin?

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

Polysporin side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using Polysporin and call your doctor at once if:

  • you need to use this medicine longer than 1 week;

  • your condition persists or gets worse; or

  • a rash or other allergic reaction occurs.

Less serious side effects may be 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.

What other drugs will affect Polysporin?

Medicine used on the skin is not likely to be affected by other drugs you use, but many drugs can interact. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

More about Polysporin First Aid Antibiotic Ointment (bacitracin / polymyxin b topical)

Patient resources

Other brands

Simply Neosporin

Related treatment guides

Further information

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.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.