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Drugs

Side Effects
Serious

No serious side effects are associated with calamine.
Common

No common side effects are associated with calamine.
Less Common

Rash, irritation, or sensitivity of the treated area that was not present prior to beginning therapy. Call your doctor promptly if such symptoms persist.
Calamine


Drug Class:
Topical anti-itching agent; astringent

Available OTC?: Yes

Available Generic?: Yes

Available In
Why Prescribed
How It Works
Range and Frequency
Onset of Effect
Duration of Action
Dietary Advice
Storage
Missed Dose
Stopping the Drug
Prolonged Use
Over 60
Driving and Hazardous Work
Alcohol
Pregnancy
Breast Feeding
Infants and Children
Special Concerns
Overdose Symptoms
What to Do
Drug Interactions
Food Interactions
Disease Interactions


Available In
Lotion, ointment

Why Prescribed
To relieve the itching, pain, and discomfort of skin irritations, such as those caused by poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac. Calamine will also dry the oozing and weeping of skin eruptions caused by poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac.

How It Works
The exact mechanism of action is unknown; calamine appears to have natural soothing properties.

Range and Frequency
Apply calamine to the affected area of skin as often as needed. To use the lotion, shake it well to start. Then moisten a wad of cotton with the lotion and use the cotton to apply the lotion to the affected area of skin. Allow the lotion to dry on the skin. To use the ointment, gently rub just enough ointment into the skin to lightly cover the affected area.

Onset of Effect
Within 1 hour.

Duration of Action
Unknown.

Dietary Advice
Calamine can be used without regard to diet.

Storage
Store in a tightly sealed container away from heat and direct light. Do not refrigerate or allow medication to freeze.

Missed Dose
If you are using calamine on a fixed schedule, apply the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is close to the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your regular dosage schedule. Do not use more lotion or ointment than necessary.

Stopping the Drug
Take it as prescribed for the full treatment period. However, you may stop taking the drug if you are feeling better before the scheduled end of therapy.

Prolonged Use
Call your doctor if your condition does not improve or gets worse after 7 days of treatment.

Over 60
No special problems have been documented in older patients.

Driving and Hazardous Work
Use of calamine should not impair your ability to perform such tasks safely.

Alcohol
No special precautions are necessary.

Pregnancy
No problems during pregnancy have been documented.

Breast Feeding
Calamine may be used safely while nursing; no problems that affect the baby during breast feeding have been documented.

Infants and Children
Studies on the use of calamine on infants and children have not been done; however, no pediatric-specific problems have been documented.

Special Concerns
Calamine is for external use only. Do not swallow it. Do not use calamine on the eyes or mucous membranes, such as the inside of the mouth, nose, genitals, or anal area. Ingestion of calamine has been reported to cause gastritis (inflammation of the stomach lining) and vomiting. Milk or antacids may be used to treat gastritis.

Overdose Symptoms
None.

What to Do
No emergency instructions are applicable, since no cases of overdose have been reported. However, if someone accidentally ingests calamine, seek medical assistance right away.

Drug Interactions
No drug interactions with calamine have been reported. However, you should tell your doctor if you are using any other prescription or over-the-counter medication to treat the same area of skin as calamine.

Food Interactions
No known food interactions.

Disease Interactions
No disease interactions with calamine have been documented. However, tell your doctor if you have any other skin condition.

Date Published: 04/13/2005
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