Action And Clinical Pharmacology: The corticosteroids are a class of compounds comprising steroid hormones secreted by the adrenal cortex and their synthetic analogs. In pharmacologic doses, corticosteroids are used primarily for their anti-inflammatory and/or immunosuppressive effects. Topical corticosteroids such as clobetasol are effective in the treatment of corticosteroid-responsive dermatoses primarily because of their anti-inflammatory, antipruritic, and vasoconstrictive actions. However, while the physiologic, pharmacologic and clinical effects of the corticosteroids are well known, the exact mechanisms of their actions in each disease are uncertain.
Clobetasol has been shown to have topical and systemic pharmacologic and metabolic effects characteristic of the corticosteroid class of drugs.
Indications And Clinical Uses: Cream and Ointment: For the topical therapy of recalcitrant corticosteroid-responsive dermatoses, including severe cases of psoriasis (excluding widespread plaque psoriasis) and eczematous dermatitis. Scalp Lotion: application is indicated in the topical therapy of recalcitrant corticosteroid-responsive dermatoses of the scalp, including recalcitrant cases of psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis.
Contra-Indications: Rosacea, acne vulgaris, perioral dermatitis or perianal and genital pruritus. These preparations are contraindicated also in primarily infected bacterial or fungal skin lesions if no anti-infective agent is used simultaneously, in primary cutaneous viral infections (i.e., herpes simplex, vaccinia and varicella) and in tuberculous skin lesions. Clobetasol should not be used in patients who are hypersensitive to any of the components of the preparation. derma
Manufacturers’ Warnings In Clinical States: Use with caution on lesions close to the eye. Care is needed to ensure that the preparation does not enter the eye as glaucoma may result. Posterior subcapsular cataracts have been reported following systemic use of corticosteroids.
When used over extensive areas for prolonged periods, it is possible that sufficient absorption may take place to give rise to adrenal suppression. Therefore, it is advisable to use clobetasol for brief periods only and to discontinue its use as soon as the lesion has resolved. No more than 50 g of the cream or ointment or 50 mL of the scalp application should be used per week.
Patients should be advised to inform subsequent physicians of their prior use of corticosteroids.
Precautions: Children: Because the safety and effectiveness has not been established in children, its use in this age group is not recommended.
The face, more than other areas of the body, may exhibit atrophic changes after prolonged treatment with potent topical corticosteroids. This must be borne in mind when treating such conditions as psoriasis, discoid lupus erythematosus and severe eczema.
Prolonged use of topical corticosteroids may produce atrophy of the skin and of subcutaneous tissues. If this is noted, the use of the product should be discontinued.
Although hypersensitivity reactions are rare with topically applied steroids, the drug should be discontinued and appropriate therapy initiated if there are signs of hypersensitivity.
Long-term continuous therapy should be avoided where possible as adrenal suppression can occur even without occlusion. Significant systemic absorption may occur when corticosteroids are applied over large areas of the body, especially under occlusive dressings. Because the degree of absorption of clobetasol when applied under occlusive dressing has not been measured, its use in this fashion is not recommended.
Topical steroids may be hazardous in psoriasis for a number of reasons including rebound relapses, development of tolerance, risk of generalized pustular psoriasis and development of local or systemic toxicity due to impaired barrier function of the skin. If used in psoriasis, careful patient supervision is important.
Appropriate antimicrobial therapy should be used whenever treating inflammatory lesions which have become infected. Any spread of infection requires withdrawal of topical corticosteroid therapy and systemic administration of anti-microbial agents.
In cases of bacterial infections of the skin, appropriate anti-bacterial agents should be used as primary therapy. If it is considered necessary, the topical corticosteroid may be used as an adjunct to control inflammation, erythema and itching. If a symptomatic response is not noted within a few days to a week, the local application of corticosteroid should be discontinued until the infection is brought under control. Bacterial infection is encouraged by the warm, moist conditions induced by occlusive dressings, and the skin should be cleansed before a fresh dressing is applied.
Pregnancy and Lactation: Topical administration of corticosteroids to pregnant animals can cause abnormalities of fetal development. The relevance of this finding to human beings has not been established. However, the administration of this drug during pregnancy and lactation should only be considered if the expected benefit to the mother is greater than any possible risk to the fetus. Drugs of this class should not be used extensively in pregnant patients in large amounts or for prolonged periods of time.
Clobetasol scalp applications should not be used near an open flame.
Adverse Reactions: As with other topical corticosteroids, prolonged use of large amounts of clobetasol or treatment of extensive areas can result in sufficient systemic absorption to produce the features of hypercorticism.
Provided the weekly dosage is less than 50 g in adults, any suppression of the hypothalamic-pituitary axis (HPA-axis) is likely to be transient with a rapid return to normal values once the short course of steroid therapy has ceased.
Prolonged and extensive treatment with highly active corticosteroid preparations may cause local atrophic changes in the skin such as thinning, striae, and dilatation of the superficial blood vessels, particularly when occlusive dressings are used, or when skin folds are involved. Local burning, irritation, itching, dryness of the skin, telangiectasia, acneform eruptions, change in pigmentation, secondary infection, hypertrichosis and atrophy of skin and s.c. tissue have also been observed following topical corticosteroid therapy. Exacerbation of symptoms may occur.
In rare instances, treatment of psoriasis with corticosteroids (or their withdrawal) is thought to have provoked the pustular form of the disease.
Clobetasol preparations are usually well tolerated, but if signs of hypersensitivity appear, application should be stopped immediately.
Symptoms And Treatment Of Overdose: Symptoms and Treatment: Acute overdosage is very unlikely to occur. However, in the case of chronic overdosage or misuse, the features of hypercorticism may appear. Treatment should be discontinued in this case.
Dosage And Administration: Cream and Ointment: Apply sparingly to cover the affected area, and gently rub into the skin. Frequency of application is 2 to 3 times daily according to the severity of the condition. The total dose applied should not exceed 50 g weekly.
Scalp Application: Apply once or twice daily to the affected areas of the scalp and rub in gently. The total dose applied should not exceed 50 mL weekly.
Therapy should be discontinued if no response is noted after a week or as soon as the lesion heals. It is advisable to use clobetasol for brief periods only.
Availability And Storage: Cream: Each g contains: clobetasol 17-propionate 0.05% w/w in a white water miscible cream base. Nonmedicinal ingredients: beeswax substitute, cetostearyl alcohol, chlorocresol, citric acid hydrous, glyceryl monostearate, propylene glycol, purified water and sodium citrate. Paraben- and lanolin-free. Do not dilute the cream. Tubes of 15 and 50 g. Store below 30°C.
Ointment: Each g contains: clobetasol 17-propionate 0.05% w/w in a water repellent ointment base. Nonmedicinal ingredients: propylene glycol, sorbitan sesquiolate and white soft parrafin. Tubes of 15 and 50 g. Store below 30°C.
Scalp Lotion: Each mL of hydroalcoholic solution for application on the scalp contains: clobetasol 17-propionate 0.05% in an aqueous alcohol base. Nonmedicinal ingredients: carbopol 934P, isopropyl alcohol, purified water and sodium hydroxide. Bottles of 20 and 60 mL. Store below 30°C.
DERMOVATE® Glaxo Wellcome Clobetasol 17-Propionate Topical Corticosteroid