Clobetasol Propionate’s Side Effects

Clobetasol propionate is a prescription medicine used to treat different skin conditions and disorders. This medication is a type of synthetic corticosteroid belonging to the glucocorticoid class. The corticosteroids represent a class of chemical compounds comprising of steroid hormones secreted by adrenal cortex and their synthetic analogs. The corticosteroids can be also defined as a group of medication that work in a similar way. Clobetasol is a whitish cream and is insoluble in water. Clobetasol is available in shampoo, as a cream, gel and anointment.

Clobetasol is marketed and sold over the world and can be found under various generic names, such as: Clobex, Clob-X, Clovate, Clobet, Cormax, Movate, Temovate, Dermovate, Salac, Novate and so on.

Skin disorders ranging from eczema, dermatitis, rash, herpes labialis, psoriasis, lichen sclerous and many more can be treated by Clobetasol propionate. This medication is used topically. A thin layer of Clobetasol propionate is applied and gently rubbed on the affected skin. Do not use it for face, genitals or underarm unless instructed by a health professional or your physician.

Moreover, Clobetasol is used for treatment of autoimmune diseases, such as alopecia aerate, lichen planus, and mycosis fungoid. Clobetasol is applied on the affected skin area in the same way as the treatment for skin disorders.

Clobetasol is used as first-line treatment for acute and chronic Graft-Versus-Host Disease (GVHD). GVHD is a medical complication that occurs after a transplantation of tissues when the donor cells attack the recipient cells.

How Clobetasol propionate?

Clobetasol works by stopping skin cells from releasing inflammatory chemicals that make blood vessels such as capillaries widen, thus causing the skin to become red, swollen, itchy and painful (these are the classical features of inflammation). It contains neomycin that works by causing bacteria to produce abnormal and faulty proteins. It also constitutes nystatin that works by causing pores to appear on the cell membranes of fungi and yeast, thus vital nutrients for their survival leak therefore they die.

Clobetasol Side effects.

Clobetasol is not an over the counter medication. It’s prescribed to an individual by a qualified doctor. As most of medicines Clobetasol has various side effects which may include:

  • Burning, itching and redness on the site of application. This should decrease within few days after your body adjusts to the medicine.
  • Stretch marks.
  • Skin thinning and discoloration.
  • Hair bumps / folliculitis.
  • Spider veins.
  • Dry or cracking skin.
  • Adverse reactions like numbness of fingers, skin atrophy and telangiectasia. Notify your doctor if any of these effects appear or persist.


Always consult your medical healthcare provider before using Clobetasol propionate.

  • Clobetasol propionate should not be used by pregnant women. It affects growth and development of fetus.
  • Do not use Clobetasol propionate on open sores or wounds.
  • Clobetasol propionate should not be ingested. This can be fatal.
  • Do not apply Clobetasol propionate for long time. This medication should be used no longer than two weeks. Prolonged use of the medicine makes the skin resistant to any form of physical stress.
  • Do not use the medicine if you have any form of allergies to Clobetasol.
  • It should not be used with occlusive dressings. That is the area should not be bandaged. Occlusive dressings increase the chances of Clobetasol propionate absorption through the skin.
  • Avoid direct contact with the nose, mouth and eye. It may cause glaucoma.
  • After applying wash hands unless you are treating the hands.
  • It’s advisable not to take other steroids while using this medicine.
  • Always inform your doctor before using Clobetasol, so that assessment can be made as well as checking your past medical history.
  • Do not share medications with anyone.
  • Clobetasol propionate should only be used externally.
  • Clobetasol propionate can lead to adrenal insufficiency. It can result to manifestation of the Cushing’s Syndrome – a condition resulting from a surplus of cortisol.

Do not use Clobetasol propionate if you observe the following signs:

  • Blurred vision, eye pain or seeing halos when looking at light.
  • Problems of the adrenal glands such as nausea, vomiting, fever and chest pain.
  • Increasing of blood sugar.
  • Increase of urination (polyuria), thirst (polydypsia) and/or dry mouth.
  • Severe irritation of the treated skin.
  • Anxiety or fatigue.

Thus, Clobetasol is mostly used to treat skin infections. However, there are certain skin infections and conditions that cannot be treated by Clobetasol, particularly:

  • Bacterial infections that are not associated with an inflammatory disorder such as Vitiligo or Impetigo.
  • Lesions caused by tuberculosis or syphilis.
  • Fungal infections such as ringworms, athlete’s foot and candida skin infections.
  • Acne Vulgaris and Acne rosacea.
  • Perioral dermatitis.

Having all necessary information about Clobetasol propionate at hand, it’s still very important to follow your doctor’s prescriptions. Inappropriate use of the medication can be harmful.

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