What is Tacrolimus ointment uses, side effect & precautions?

Why is this medication prescribed?

Tacrolimus ointment is used for the treatments of the skin conditions like eczema (atopic dermatitis). Atopic dermatitis is a skin condition in which you feel dry and itchy and o sometimes develop red, scaly rashes on your skin. This medication is used by patients whose eczema has not responded to another medication and can not use other medications for their condition. 

It comes under the class of drugs known as topical calcineurin inhibitors. If you have a history of a certain rare genetic disorder (Netherton’s syndrome) and who has a weakened immune system then this medication is not recommended for you to use.

How should this medicine be used?

Tacrolimus is available in the form of an ointment to use on the skin. Usually, by your healthcare professionals, it is prescribed to be used twice a day to the affected area. Always use this medication regularly at the same time each day. Follow the medications, diet, and exercise, and diabetes management plan very carefully.

If anything that you don’t understand asks your health care professionals to explain. Tacrolimus ointment does not cure diabetes, only helps in controlling it. So, don’t try to use this medication more or less often than prescribed by your health care professionals. If your symptoms do not improve after using this medication and getting worse or during your treatment with tacrolimus ointment medication then talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

If you want to use this product for children then talk to your doctor first and get the weakest product for the children 2 to 15 years old.

How to apply Tacrolimus ointment?

  1. Before using tacrolimus ointment, wash your hand thoroughly with soap and water very gently.
  2. Make sure that the affected area of your skiing should be dry.
  3. Then take a clean finger cot or rubber glove and wear it.
  4. After that take enough ointment to cover all the affected areas.
  5. At all the affected areas of your skin apply a thin layer of the tacrolimus ointment.
  6. And after that rub the tacrolimus ointment very gently.
  7. After that take off the rubber glove or finger cot and dispose of it. So that no one can find it.
  8. Avoid wrapping and wearing tight-fitting clothing over the affected area but you can cover the affected area with normal clothing.
  9. Ensure that you do not wash the area where you apply the tacrolimus ointment on your skin. So, remember not to bathe, shower, or swim after applying this medication.

If you want to get the most benefits from the tacrolimus ointment then use this medication regularly in order until your health care professional won’t tell you to stop using this medication. If you are using this medication and your condition doesn’t improve after 6 weeks then contact your doctor.

Remember this medication is available to use on the skin at the affected area. So, try to avoid getting tacrolimus ointment in your nose, mouth, and eyes then flush with plenty of water, if you do get this medication inside those areas. And don’t try to apply tacrolimus ointment on the infected areas or open wounds. if you want to use any product on your infected areas or open wounds then use Silver Sulfadiazine.

Warnings of using Tacrolimus ointment

When tacrolimus ointment is used correctly patients have got the most benefit from it. The doctor suggested this medication when another medication didn’t work properly. If you’re using tacrolimus ointment or other medication then it may cause developed skin cancer or lymphoma. But it is not there is not enough information available that tells whether tacrolimus ointment caused cancer. The doctor who studies the transplant and laboratory animal and gets the proper working of tacrolimus ointment, suggests that the people who are using this medication have a greater risk of developing cancer. If you want to decrease the risk of developing cancer during your treatment by using the tacrolimus ointment.

Follow these directions:

  • Don’t ever use this medication for a long timer period. If you have symptoms of eczema then use tacrolimus ointment otherwise don’t use it. 
  • If your symptoms go away then stop using this medication or if your doctor tells you to stop using it.
  • During your treatment, if your symptoms get worse at any time, or if you are using this medication for the last 6 weeks and you didn’t see any improvement then tell your healthcare professionals about these things.
  • Apply this medication only to the skin that is affected by eczema.
  • After your treatment with tacrolimus ointment, if your eczema symptoms come back again then tell your healthcare professionals.
  • If you are using tacrolimus ointment on your children and your children are younger than 2 years then don’t use it. The children who are between 2 and 15 years old do not use tacrolimus ointment 0.1% to treat eczema, for this group of children only tacrolimus ointment 0.03% can be used to treat eczema.
  • Tacrolimus ointment may not be right for you if you have or have ever had cancer or any condition that affects your immune system then tell your healthcare professionals.
  • Ask your healthcare professionals if you have any condition that affects your immune system.
  • During your treatment with tacrolimus ointment, protect your skin from real and artificial sunlight and stay out of the sunlight as much as possible even if the medication is not on your skin. 
  • In case, if you want to go outside the house then wear loose-fitting clothing to protect the affected area of the skin and ask your healthcare professionals other ways to protect your skin from the sun.

If you are taking the treatment with this medication your doctor or pharmacist will give you the manufacturer’s patient information sheet (Medication Guide), read all the information very carefully mentioned in the sheet, and ask any questions to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any problem. And also talk about the risk of using tacrolimus ointment.

Other uses of Tacrolimus ointment

Ask your health care professional for more information because tacrolimus ointment is also prescribed for other uses.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

Always follow your dietary recommendations and exercise plan made by your health care professional. And ask your doctor for instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity. Or if your doctor didn’t give you any instructions, you can continue your normal diet. 

What are the side effects of Tacrolimus ointment?

Don’t use this medication without your doctor’s prescription, Doctors will suggest tacrolimus ointment by judging the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. You should have to know the side effects and symptoms of this medication before taking this. 

Don’t use tacrolimus ointment for a longer time period than prescribed, but in case, If you’re using tacrolimus ointment for prolonged or repeated long periods then it may result in some serious side effects. If you notice or feel any of the new or worsening symptoms or side effects then tell your health care professionals.

Some common side effects of tacrolimus ointment:

If you experience any of these common side effects or symptoms and do not go away, then stop taking or using tacrolimus ointment and call your doctor immediately:

  • You’ll feel a headache.
  • You’ll feel muscle or back pain.
  • You’ll feel flu-like symptoms.
  • You’ll start feeling skin burning, stinging, redness, or soreness on the skin.
  • You’ll feel tingling on the skin.
  • You’ll feel acne.
  • You’ll feel swollen or infected hair follicles.
  • You’ll feel increased sensitivity of the skin to hot or cold temperatures.
  • You’ll feel itching.
  • You’ll feel stuffy or runny noses.
  • You’ll feel nausea.

Some serious side effects of tacrolimus ointment:

If you experience any of these serious side effects or symptoms and do not go away, then stop taking or using tacrolimus ointment and call your doctor immediately:

  • You’ll feel swollen glands.
  • You’ll feel a rash, itching, swelling on the face, tongue, or throat. 
  • You’ll feel severe dizziness.
  • You’ll feel trouble breathing.
  • You’ll feel crusting, oozing, blistering or other signs of skin infection.
  • You’ll feel cold sores.
  • You’ll feel chickenpox or other blisters.
  • You’ll feel swelling of the hands, arms, feet, ankles, or lower legs.

It can also cause other side effects and if you have any unusual problems apart from these while using tacrolimus ointment then immediately contact your health care professionals because this is not the complete list of all symptoms and side effects of tacrolimus ointment.

What special precautions should I follow?

You should have followed this special precaution before using tacrolimus ointment:

  • If you are allergic to tacrolimus ointment, injection, or capsules (Prograf), or any other medications then tell your doctor and pharmacist.
  • If you have any skin infection or have ever had kidney disease, Netherton’s syndrome, redness, and peeling of most of your skin, any other skin disease then tell your doctor and pharmacist.
  • If you have any medical history then tell your doctor and pharmacist.
  • If you are taking some prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products, or planning to take fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, and other ointments, creams, or lotions while using tacrolimus ointment then tell your doctor and pharmacist.
  • If you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding while using the tacrolimus. If you become pregnant while using tacrolimus ointment then tell your doctor and pharmacist.
  • If you are having surgery, including dental surgery while using tacrolimus ointment then tell your doctor and pharmacist.
  • If you are drinking alcohol while using tacrolimus ointment then ask your healthcare professionals about the safe use of alcoholic beverages. During your treatment with this medication, if you are drinking alcohol, your skin or face may become flushed or red and feel hot.
  • During your treatment with this medication, If you are exposed to one of these viruses such as chickenpox, shingles, and other viruses then contact your doctor and pharmacist.

Follow all the mentioned precautions carefully, these are all precautions that you can take while using the tacrolimus ointment. If you have experienced or faced any of the problems mentioned above then contact your health care professionals immediately.

What can I do if I forget a dose?

If you forgot to take tacrolimus ointment and if it is near the time of your next dose then we suggest you please skip that dose and take it at the next dose at the regular time. Don’t take the dose at irregular times. It makes your dose double and it would be harmful to you.

Alyas remembers that when you start to take tacrolimus ointment, always remember to write down all of the instructions that your healthcare professionals tell you when you ask a question.

What happens if I overdose?

Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have experienced any of the following symptoms or side effects immediately. Some of the symptoms or side effects can occur because of an overdose of tacrolimus ointment.

What can I know about the storage and disposal of this medication?

Store this medication at room temperature and keep them away from light or excessive heat and moisture. And put them away from the reach of the pets and children, we suggest you put that medicine in a tightly closed container in which they came.

You should have disposed of all the medication that is unneeded in a special way to ensure that children, pets, and other people can’t consume them. You can not flush them or pour them into the drain. You can return them to the pharmacist or the best way is that you can take back the program for returning your medicines.

What other information should I know?

Don’t miss any of your doctor and laboratory appointments because your doctor will check the response of this medicine then he/she will tell you the update or other pieces of information. So, keep all your appointments with your doctor, pharmacist, and the laboratory. 

Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you feel your health condition is getting worse or your dose may need to be adjusted.

It is very important to tell your pharmacist about all your prescriptions and non-prescription you were taking and make a list of them and carry the list all time. It would help you in case of emergencies. When you meet or visit your doctor you should bring the list. It’s important to your doctor.

And ensure that no one is taking your medicine or no one has them. And every time when you meet your pharmacist or doctor asks them any of the questions you have about refilling your prescription.


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