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Generic name: sulfacetamide sodium and sulfur topicalSUL-fa-SEET-a-mide-SOE-dee-um-and-SUL-fur-TOP-i-kal ]
Brand names: Avar Cleanser, Avar-E, BP 10-Wash, Clenia Plus Green Tea and Aloe, Plexion, ... show all 9 brands
Drug class: Topical antibiotics

Medically reviewed by on Nov 21, 2023. Written by Cerner Multum.

What is Sumaxin?

Sumaxin (for the skin) is a combination medicine that is used to treat acne, rosacea, and seborrheic dermatitis (an inflammatory skin condition of the scalp) in adults and children at least 12 years old.

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

Sumaxin side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash with blistering and peeling).

Sumaxin may cause serious side effects. Stop using Sumaxin and call your doctor at once if you have:

Common side effects of Sumaxin may include:

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.


Use only as directed. Tell your doctor if you use other medicines or have other medical conditions or allergies.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use Sumaxin if you are allergic to sulfa drugs, or if you have kidney disease.

Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had:

It is not known if Sumaxin will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

Ask a doctor if it is safe to breastfeed while using Sumaxin.

How should I use Sumaxin?

Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Use the medicine exactly as directed.

Do not take by mouth. Topical medicine is for use only on the skin.

Your dose needs may change if you switch to a different brand, strength, or form of this medicine. Avoid medication errors by using exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor.

Do not use this medicine more often than prescribed. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully.

Shake the Sumaxin liquid, lotion, foam, or suspension well before each use.

Wash your hands before and after applying this medicine, unless you are using it to treat a hand condition.

Do not bandage treated skin or expose it to heat. Your skin may absorb the medicine, which could cause harmful effects.

Store tightly closed at room temperature, away from moisture and heat. Do not freeze.

Store the foam container upright and keep away from open flame or heat. Do not puncture or burn an empty canister.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not use 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.

Overdose symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, blood in your urine, or urinating less than usual.

What should I avoid while using Sumaxin?

Avoid getting Sumaxin in your eyes, inside the nose, or mouth. Rinse with water if this medicine gets in your eyes, nose, or mouth.

Avoid using this medicine on open wounds, severely burned areas, irritated or infected skin.

This medicine can stain clothing or other fabrics if it comes into contact with them.

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

What other drugs will affect Sumaxin?

Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:

This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect Sumaxin, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.

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.