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Protopic: Important Information about the Topical Immunosuppressant

Written by Megan Kinder, with information gathered from Drugs.com and other current, credible sources online. [email protected]

What is Protopic?

Protopic is a topical immunosuppressant. It works by decreasing cell activity in the body's immune system. This helps slow down the growth of atopic dermatitis (eczema) on your skin.

Important information about Protopic

You should not use Protopic if you are allergic to tacrolimus.

Before using Protopic, speak with your health care provider. There may be certain cases where Protopic is not a benefical choice. Some issues may include a weak immune system, kidney disease, or swelling, redness, or irritation of large areas of your skin.

Protopic can lower the blood cells that help your body fight infections. This can make it easier for you to get sick from a virus such as chicken pox or herpes (cold sores or shingles). Tell your doctor if you have been exposed to any illness.

Avoid sunlight, sun lamps, tanning beds, and phototherapy treatments with UVA or UVB light. If you must be outdoors, wear loose clothing over the skin areas treated with Protopic. Do not use sunscreen on treated skin unless your doctor has told you to.

Talk to your doctor if your skin condition does not improve after using Protopic for 6 weeks.

Do not use this medication on a child younger than 2 years old. Some people have developed skin cancer or lymphoma after using Protopic or pimecrolimus (Elidel). However, it is not known if either of these medicines causes skin cancer or lymphoma. Talk to your doctor about your individual risk.

Before using Protopic

You should not use Protopic if you are allergic to tacrolimus.

To make sure you can safely use Protopic, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • skin cancer or a skin infection (including herpes or chickenpox);

  • any genetic skin disorder (such as Netherton's syndrome);

  • a weak immune system (caused by disease or by using certain medicines);

  • kidney disease; or

  • swelling, redness, or irritation of large areas of your skin.

Protopic can lower the blood cells that help your body fight infections. This can make it easier for you to get sick from a virus such as chicken pox or herpes (cold sores or shingles). Tell your doctor if you have been exposed to any illness.

Some people have developed skin cancer or lymphoma after using Protopic or pimecrolimus (Elidel). However, it is not known if either of these medicines causes skin cancer or lymphoma. Talk to your doctor about your individual risk.

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