Apexicon

1 What is Apexicon?

Brand: Apexicon, Apexicon E, Emollient Cream, Florone, Maxiflor, Psorcon, Psorcon E

Generic: Diflorasone

Apexicon is generally used to treat the itching, redness, dryness, crusting, scaling, swelling, and discomfort of various skin conditions (e.g. psoriasis).

This product belongs to a group of medicines named corticosteroid (cortisone-like medicine or steroid) that is used topically for its anti-inflammatory, antipruritic and vasoconstrictive actions.

This medicine is available in the following dosage forms only with your doctor's prescription:

  • Cream
  • Ointment

2 What to Know Before Using

Before using Apexicon, you must know all about the risks and complications associated with it. The suitable drug therapy is usually chosen by a doctor with the active participation of the patient.

There are some important factors such as drug interactions, the presence of any metabolic impairment, history of hypersensitivity reaction, pregnancy, lactation etc. that may alter the desired therapeutic effects of a medicine.

Sometimes the presence of other health disorders affects the beneficial effects of this medicine and even may cause serious toxic effects. If you have had any allergic reactions to any medicine then you must tell your doctor about that.

The use of diflorasone is contraindicated in patients with hypersensitivity or known intolerance to corticosteroids or any component of the preparations (e.g. ointment or cream base, preservative, alcohol) and untreated bacterial or viral infections.

Make sure you inform your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Active infection of the skin at or near the place of application
  • Cushing’s syndrome (adrenal gland disorder)
  • Chickenpox (including recent exposure)
  • Glaucoma—this drug may worsen this medical condition.
  • Intracranial hypertension (increased pressure in the head) — caution should be exercised because this medicine may make these conditions worse.
  • Measles (including recent exposure) — because of increased risk of severe disease affecting other parts of the body.
  • Type 2 diabetes mellitus—this medicine may cause a loss of control of diabetes by increasing blood glucose (sugar).
  • Pre-existing skin atrophy
  • Large sores, broken skin, or severe skin injury at the place of application
  • Perioral dermatitis (skin problem)
  • Rosacea (skin problem)
  • Tuberculosis – use of large amounts of high-potency agents may worsen condition

Because of drug-drug interactions, certain medicines should not be used along with another medicine. It is always recommended to consult with your doctor if you are in need of some other medications or even any over-the-counter medicine for another health problem in order to avoid unwanted toxic effects.

Animal reproduction studies have shown an adverse effect on the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in humans. Thus, this drug should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. Besides, caution should be exercised when used in lactating women because there are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding.

3 Proper Usage

To use Apexicon properly, you must follow all instructions given by your doctor. The dosage schedule and the duration of drug therapy generally depend on upon the particular medical problem for which you are going to use this medicine.

The therapeutic dose may also vary with the patient’s condition or requirement and the strength of the medicine as well. This medicine comes with patient information. You should read and follow the instructions carefully before using this medicine.

For treatment of redness, itching, and swelling of the skin:

  • Adults—Apply to the affected area(s) of the skin one to four times daily (depends on the condition being treated).
  • Children—Apply to the affected area(s) of the skin once daily.

To use cream/ointment, follow these guidelines:

  • You should wash your hands with soap and water before and after using this medicine.
  • You should apply a thin layer of this medicine to the affected area(s) of the skin.
  • You should not bandage or otherwise wrap the skin being treated unless directed to do so by your doctor.
  • If the medicine is applied to the diaper area of an infant, do not use tight-fitting diapers or plastic pants unless directed to do so by your doctor.

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. But, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use this drug in larger amounts, more often, or for a longer time than your doctor ordered. To do so may increase the chance of absorption resulting in increased side effects.

Further, it is advised to store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature away from heat, moisture, and direct light. All kinds of medicines should be kept out of the reach of children. However, outdated medicines should be disposed of by an appropriate way.

4 Precautions to Take

Before using Apexicon, there are some precautions you must take. Firstly, regular visits to your doctor are recommended to check that this medicine is working properly or not.

Additionally, the following general guidelines should be followed to prevent unwanted complications as well as for the better prognosis of the patients:

Penetration of this medicine is high at axilla, groin, face, scalp, and scrotum; medium at limbs and trunk; low at palm, sole, elbow, and knee. Areas of high penetration easily develop adverse effects. Thus, caution should be exercised.

Sudden discontinuation should be avoided. Upon improvement, a less potent preparation may be substituted or the steroid may be alternated with an emollient till the lesion resolves. That’s why; you should not stop using this medicine without first checking with your doctor.

You should check with your doctor if your condition does not improve within 2 or 3 weeks or if it becomes worse.

If you notice rashes, burning, blistering, stinging, swelling, itching or any other sign of irritation on the skin that you did not have before you started using this medicine, check with your doctor.

Avoid close contact with anyone who has chickenpox or measles. This is especially important for children. Tell your doctor right away if you think you have been exposed to chickenpox or measles.

This medicine may affect blood glucose (sugar) levels. If you notice a change in the results of your blood or urine sugar tests or if you have any questions, check with your doctor.

Long-term use of diflorasone may cause children to grow more slowly. Talk to your doctor about the risks of using this medication.

5 Potential Side Effects

As with many medications, there are several potential side effects associated with Apexicon. These side effects usually go away during the treatment episode as your body adjusts to the medicine. Your healthcare professional may advise you about the ways how to prevent or reduce those unwanted side effects.

Sometimes you may need to consult with the doctor immediately if you notice any of the following toxic effects:

Local Adverse Effects:

  • Thinning of the epidermis
  • Atrophy
  • Telangiectasia
  • Striae
  • Easy Bruising
  • Hypopigmentation
  • Irritation
  • Burning Sensation
  • Dryness
  • Edema
  • Folliculitis
  • Hypersensitivity Reactions
  • Secondary Infections (Fungal & Bacterial)

Systemic Adverse Effects:

  • Adrenal pituitary suppression can occur if large amounts are applied repeatedly. Infants and children are particularly susceptible.
  • Rarely, Cushing’s syndrome has been reported.

Miscellaneous:

  • Acne
  • Cataract
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • High blood sugar levels
  • Increased risk of infection
  • Increased facial hair
  • Insomnia (difficulty sleeping)
  • Mood swings
  • Psychosis and other psychiatric symptoms
  • Rounding of the face (moon face)
  • Stretch marks
  • Weakened bones (osteoporosis)
  • Weight gain

The undesirable side effects of this medicine are dependent on both dose and duration of treatment. For many, the side effects of steroids outweigh their anti-inflammatory benefits. Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

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