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Protopic Ointment is a topical prescription medication used to treat eczema. This medication is prescribed as a last resort to treat moderate to severe eczema. Protopic should only be used after other medications have failed to clear up the problem area. This medication should not be used for prolonged periods of time. Treatment may be repeated but it is recommended that patients take a “break” in between uses. Patients should speak with their doctor if eczema does not improve in 6 weeks. Protopic should be used only on areas of the skin with eczema, and should not come into contact with healthy skin.
Reports have been made that protopic ointment causes cancer, however a link between the two has not been proven. The risks of long-term use of Protopic Ointment are not known at this time. This medication should not be given to children under the age of 2 years of age.
Patients using Protopic should refrain from sunlight or artificial sunlight. Protopic should not be used on infected areas of the skin. Do not cover the area with bandages if you are using Protopic Ointment. Stinging, burning or itching may occur when Protopic is applied. These side effects are normal, and should not deter the patient from using this medication. Other side effects that have been reported are acne, headache, sensitivity to cold or heat, and swollen and/or infected hair follicles. Some patients may experience flu-like symptoms such as stuffy or runny nose, swollen lymph nodes, upset stomach, muscle pain, or cold sores. Chicken pox and shingles have also been reported when using this medication. These side effects are generally mild, and patients do not need to discontinue use of Protopic. If these side effects begin to bother you, talk with your doctor. Some patients have reported that their skin and face become flushed or red and feels hot to the touch when alcohol has been consumed.