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Doxepin topical Side Effects

In Summary

Commonly reported side effects of doxepin topical include: application site reaction and drowsiness. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.

For the Consumer

Applies to doxepin topical: topical cream

Along with its needed effects, doxepin topical may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur while taking doxepin topical:

More common
  • Burning, crawling, or tingling sensation of the skin
  • swelling at the site of application
  • worsening of eczema and itching
Rare Symptoms of overdose
  • Abdominal pain and swelling
  • blurring of vision
  • convulsions (seizures)
  • decreased awareness or responsiveness
  • difficulty in breathing
  • difficulty in passing urine
  • dizziness, fainting, or lightheadedness
  • drowsiness
  • enlarged pupils
  • excessive dryness of mouth
  • extremely high fever or body temperature
  • extremely low body temperature
  • fast heartbeat
  • increased or excessive unconscious or jerking movements
  • incurable constipation
  • irregular heartbeat
  • unconsciousness
  • vomiting
  • weak pulse

Some side effects of doxepin topical may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common
  • Burning and/or stinging at the site of application
  • changes in taste
  • dizziness
  • drowsiness
  • dryness and tightness of skin
  • dryness of mouth and/or lips
  • emotional changes
  • headache
  • thirst
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
Less common
  • Anxiety
  • irritation, tingling, scaling, and cracking of skin
  • nausea

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to doxepin topical: topical cream


Very common (10% or more): Burning/stinging (23%)
Common (1% to 10%): Other application site reaction
Frequency not reported: Irritation, tingling[Ref]

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Drowsiness (up to 22%)
Common (1% to 10%): Dizziness, taste perversion
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Headache
Frequency not reported: Lightheadedness, taste bitter, taste metallic[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Dry mouth
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Numbness of tongue, nausea
Frequency not reported: Dry lips, dry throat, thirst, indigestion, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Pruritus, eczema exacerbated
Frequency not reported: Localized rash, pruritus exacerbated
Postmarketing reports: Allergic contact dermatitis[Ref]


The most frequently reported adverse effects were drowsiness and burning/stinging at application site.[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Urinary retention[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Type IV hypersensitivity reaction[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Blurred vision, dry eyes[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Fatigue/tiredness, edema
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Fever
Frequency not reported: Vertigo[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Mental emotional changes
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Nervousness/anxiety[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Zonalon (doxepin topical)." Bioglan Pharmaceutical Inc, Malvern, PA.

2. MHRA. Medicines and Health Regulatory Agency "MHRA Drug Safety Update. Available from: URL:"

Some side effects of doxepin topical may not be reported. Always consult your doctor or healthcare specialist for medical advice. You may also report side effects to the FDA.

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