Skin conditions like psoriasis, eczema and other topical disorders require prompt medical attention. Of these conditions, eczema shows up as white-colored patches, accompanied by swelling of skin, itchiness as well as cracking. On the other hand, psoriasis is a condition wherein your skin turns scaly. This arises mainly because of a faster multiplication of cells. These may occur at any place; but, mainly on your knees, elbows and scalp. A combinatorial med – made of two drugs namely, clobetasol propionate and salicylic acid – is widely used to treat a range of skin problems. However, prior to using this ointment, it is essential to know how to use it for better results.

The combination of clobetasol and salicylic acid is applied to treat reddening of skin, itchiness and inflammation. Of this combination, salicylic acid is a keratolytic drug; it helps to break clumps of keratin. This action leads to removal of dead cells off your skin and also provides a softening effect. It forms part of a genre of meds called as salicylates. It brings about needful remedy by removing a bonding material present in between cells. Once the cells are free of their bonds, dead cells are eliminated with relative ease. This action also helps in the treatment of scaly skin as well as dryness of skin.

The other drug in this combination – i.e., clobetasol, is a corticosteroid. Clobetasol is commonly applied for treating intense spells of itchiness (pruritus), scaly skin caused by a drop in moisture levels. This drug belongs to a family of super-strong steroids known as highly potent corticosteroids. Hence, it is highly recommended to follow all the instructions of the treating physician all through your treatment plan.

How to use this combinatorial drug?

This drug is chiefly used for topical purposes. You are advised to apply a thinned-down film of this cream / ointment – as per the directions of your caregiver. In general, you may need to apply it two times per day. In very rare cases, the dosage plan may involve applying it three times within a 24-hour timeline. Upon application, you must never cover the damaged skin with bandage or wraps. Such actions may lead to aggravating your existing skin condition. As another precaution to enable safer use, wash your fingers and palms after applying this medication. Always remember that forgetting to wash your hands may result in numbness of digits. However, if you have skin problems on your hands, it is not recommended to wash the cream / ointment.

Your caregiver will insist application of this ointment till the end of the treatment plan. A few people who stopped using this ointment in the interim saw a relapse of the signs of this condition. So, it is highly important to continue using this drug till your doctor tells you to stop it. Never apply this ointment onto your face; also, never use excessive dosages of this med. An overuse can make the active ingredients to enter into your blood. Once it gets into the bloodstream, you may see signs such as excessive levels of weakness, thinning down of skin, persistent spells of thirst, etc. If you witness one or more of these side effects, meet your caregiving team as soon as you possibly can.

Your skin problem will show some improvement within the first 7 to 10 days of using this combinatorial drug. At times, you may be advised to apply a mild form of moisturizers to manage excessive drying of the skin. If your skin problem persists for long – before continuing to apply this drug for more than 10 days, you are advised to talk to your dermatologist or a qualified medical practitioner.

Other precautions associated with the use of this ointment

Women who are planning to become pregnant or those who are already pregnant must try to stay away from this ointment. This is mainly because of the presence of strong steroids in the combinatorial drug. As an added precaution, women who are breastfeeding their newly born baby need to know that only limited evidence exists on this drug’s safety levels on nursing women. Clinical studies however do not fully rule out possibilities of the active ingredients of this drug gaining entry into mothers’ milk. So, women who are breastfeeding or those who are pregnant must talk to your obstetrician / gynecologist prior to applying this combinatorial drug.

Clobetasol propionate and salicylic acid ointment can trigger some allergies in a few users. Some of the acute forms of these allergies are swelling of skin, rashes, breathing disorders such as gasping for breath, wheezing as well as an acute spell of drowsiness. So, it becomes essential to tell your doctor about prior allergies or any known hypersensitivity to steroids or salicylates. Always remember that your doctor has prescribed this ointment as its merits outweigh risks of applying it. Consult with a dermatologist if you have prior allergies to skin creams or ointments.

Above all, you need to know that the aforesaid allergic reactions do not constitute a full list of possible discomforts. So, one may experience a few unlisted side effects or allergies. Upon sensing one or more unknown discomforts, seek clinical support on an urgent mode. If you live in US, call 911 and get emergency medical attention. As an alternative, you can also call the food and drug administration (FDA) which runs a 24 X 7 med support helpdesk. If you are living in any one of the Canadian provinces, quickly go to a poison control center located in your province / closer to your home; you may also try calling Health Canada without any further delay.

In sum, clobetasol propionate and salicylic acid ointment is applied for treating a range of skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, itchiness, reddening of skin, etc. Wash your hands soon after applying this drug. Clobetasol propionate and salicylic acid ointment may cause a few allergies. A few acute allergies include swelling, acute spell of drowsiness, incessant thirst, etc. Inform your caregiver of known hypersensitivity to salicylates as well as steroids (such as corticosteroids). Above all, talk to your dermatologist about how to safely use this ointment during the onset of skin conditions.

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