Zyclara Side Effects
Generic name: imiquimod topical
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Nov 2, 2023.
Note: This document contains side effect information about imiquimod topical. Some dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Zyclara.
Applies to imiquimod topical: topical cream.
Serious side effects of Zyclara
Along with its needed effects, imiquimod topical (the active ingredient contained in Zyclara) 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 immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking imiquimod topical:
- Blisters on the skin
- body aches or pain
- difficulty with breathing
- ear congestion
- itching in the genital or other skin areas
- loss of voice
- open sores or scabs on the skin
- pain or tenderness around the eyes and cheekbones
- redness of the skin (severe)
- shortness of breath or troubled breathing
- skin rash
- sore throat
- stuffy or runny nose
- tightness of the chest or wheezing
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- Abdominal or stomach pain
- ankle, knee, or great toe joint pain
- bladder pain
- bloody or cloudy urine
- blurred vision
- chest pain
- cold flu-like symptoms
- difficult, burning, or painful urination
- fast or irregular heartbeat
- frequent urge to urinate
- joint stiffness or swelling
- lower back or side pain
- lump in the abdomen or stomach
- persistent non-healing sore
- pink growth on the skin
- pounding in the ears
- reddish patch or irritated area
- severe headache
- shiny bump on the skin
- slow or fast heartbeat
- swollen, painful, or tender lymph glands in the neck, armpit, or groin
- white, yellow or waxy scar-like area
Incidence not known
- Blue lips and fingernails
- coughing that sometimes produces a pink frothy sputum
- dilated neck veins
- extreme fatigue
- fast, irregular, or pounding heartbeat
- irregular breathing
- nausea or vomiting
- pain in the shoulders, arms, jaw, or neck
- slurred speech
- sudden and severe inability to speak
- swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs
- temporary blindness
- weakness in the arm or leg on one side of the body
- weight gain
Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur while taking imiquimod topical:
Symptoms of overdose
- dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
Other side effects of Zyclara
Some side effects of imiquimod 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:
- Burning or stinging of the skin (mild)
- flaking of the skin
- mild headache
- pain, soreness, or tenderness of the skin (mild)
- redness of the skin (mild)
- swelling at place of application
- Back pain
- lightening of the treated skin
For Healthcare Professionals
Applies to imiquimod topical: topical cream.
The most frequently reported side effects are local skin reactions (e.g., erythema, edema, weeping/exudate, flaking/scaling/dryness, scabbing/crusting, and erosion/ulceration), headache, application site reactions, influenza-like illness, fatigue, nausea, and fever.[Ref]
Very common (10% or more): Induration (78%), application site reaction (up to 33%), application site application site vesicles (up to 29%), pruritus/itching (up to 26.4%), application site burning (up to 16.1%), application site erythema, application site scabbing, application site exfoliation, application site dryness, application site edema, application site ulcer, application site discharge, application site pain
Common (1% to 10%): Application site irritation, application site swelling, application site rash, application site bleeding, application site papules, application site paresthesia, application site stinging sensation, application site tenderness
Very common (10% or more): Upper respiratory tract infection (up to 15%)
Common (1% to 10%): Sinusitis
Rare (less than 0.1%): Autoimmune condition exacerbated[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Headache, dizziness
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Lethargy, paresthesia, migraine, somnolence[Ref]
Very common (10% or more): Edema (up to 71%)
Common (1% to 10%): Fatigue, pyrexia, herpes simplex, pain, chest pain, influenza-like illness, infection, pustule, viral infection
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Face edema, asthenia, chills, discomfort, inflammation, bacterial infection, fungal infection, tinnitus, rigors, malaise[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Nausea, diarrhea, chelitis, vomiting
Common (1% to 10%): Lymphadenopathy
Frequency not reported: Hemoglobin decreased, white blood cell count decreased, neutrophil count decreased, platelet count decreased[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Atrial fibrillation
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Flushing[Ref]
Very common (10% or more): Excoriation/flaking/scaling/dryness (up to 87%), erythema (up to 69%), scab/crusting (up to 64%), erosion/ulceration (up to 54%), skin exfoliation, skin edema, skin ulcer, skin hypopigmentation
Common (1% to 10%): Dermatitis
Common (1% to 10%): Myalgia, arthralgia, back pain
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Pain in extremity[Ref]
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Genital candidiasis, vaginitis, vulvitis, dysuria, male genital pain, penile disorder, dyspareunia, erectile dysfunction, uterovaginal prolapse, vaginal pain, vaginitis atrophic, vulval disorder[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Insomnia
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Conjunctival irritation, eyelid edema[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Anorexia, blood glucose increased[Ref]
Frequency not reported: Hepatic enzyme increased[Ref]
Postmarketing reports: Thyroiditis[Ref]
Frequently asked questions
- What are the most common skin conditions? (with photos)
- Does duct tape really remove warts?
- Is imiquimod the same as Aldara?
- Does Zyclara work for genital warts?
- Who makes Zyclara and where is it manufactured?
- What are the side effects of the HPV vaccine?
More about Zyclara (imiquimod topical)
- Check interactions
- Compare alternatives
- Pricing & coupons
- Reviews (48)
- Dosage information
- During pregnancy
- Generic availability
- FDA approval history
- Drug class: topical anti-infectives
Related treatment guides
1. Product Information. Aldara (imiquimod topical). 3M Pharmaceuticals. 2001.
2. Cerner Multum, Inc. UK Summary of Product Characteristics.
3. Cerner Multum, Inc. Australian Product Information.
4. Product Information. Zyclara (imiquimod topical). Medicis Pharmaceutical Corporation. 2017.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.