A / T / S Topical

Name: A / T / S Topical

Proper Use of erythromycin

This section provides information on the proper use of a number of products that contain erythromycin. It may not be specific to A/T/S. Please read with care.

Before applying this medicine, thoroughly wash the affected area with warm water and soap, rinse well, and pat dry. After washing or shaving, it is best to wait 30 minutes before applying the pledget (swab), topical gel, or topical liquid form. The alcohol in them may irritate freshly washed or shaved skin.

For patients using the pledget (swab), topical gel, or topical liquid form of erythromycin:

  • These forms contain alcohol and are flammable. Do not use near heat, near open flame, or while smoking.
  • It is important that you do not use this medicine more often than your doctor ordered. It may cause your skin to become too dry or irritated.
  • Also, you should avoid washing the acne-affected areas too often. This may dry your skin and make your acne worse. Washing with a mild, bland soap 2 or 3 times a day should be enough, unless you have oily skin. If you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.
  • To use:
    • The topical liquid form of this medicine may come in a bottle with an applicator tip, which may be used to apply the medicine directly to the skin. Use the applicator with a dabbing motion instead of a rolling motion (not like a roll-on deodorant, for example). If the medicine does not come in an applicator bottle, you may moisten a pad with the medicine and then rub the pad over the whole affected area. Or you may also apply this medicine with your fingertips. Be sure to wash the medicine off your hands afterward.
    • Apply a thin film of medicine, using enough to cover the affected area lightly. You should apply the medicine to the whole area usually affected by acne, not just to the pimples themselves. This will help keep new pimples from breaking out.
    • The pledget (swab) form should be rubbed over the whole affected area. You may use extra pledgets (swabs), if needed, to cover larger areas.
    • Since these medicines contain alcohol, they may sting or burn. Therefore, do not get these medicines in the eyes, nose, mouth, or on other mucous membranes. Spread the medicine away from these areas when applying. If these medicines do get in the eyes, wash them out immediately, but carefully, with large amounts of cool tap water. If your eyes still burn or are painful, check with your doctor.

This medicine will not cure your acne. However, to help keep your acne under control, keep using this medicine for the full time of treatment, even if your symptoms begin to clear up after a few days. You may have to continue using this medicine every day for months or even longer in some cases. If you stop using this medicine too soon, your symptoms may return. It is important that you do not miss any doses.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For acne:
    • For gel dosage form:
      • Adults—Apply to the affected area(s) of the skin two times a day, morning and evening.
      • Children—Dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For ointment dosage form:
      • Adults, teenagers, and children—Apply to the affected area(s) of the skin two times a day, morning and evening.
    • For pledgets dosage form:
      • Adults, teenagers, and children—Apply to the affected area(s) of the skin two times a day.
    • For topical solution dosage form:
      • Adults, teenagers, and children 12 years of age and over—Apply to the affected area(s) of the skin two times a day, morning and evening.
      • Children up to 12 years of age—Dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

A/T/S Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

For erythromycin ointmentLess common
  • Peeling
  • redness
For erythromycin pledget (swab), topical gel, or topical liquid form More common
  • Dry or scaly skin
  • irritation
  • itching
  • stinging or burning feeling
Less common
  • Peeling
  • redness

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Uses

This medication is used to treat acne. It helps to reduce the number of pimples. Erythromycin is an antibiotic (macrolide-type). It works by stopping the growth of bacteria. This product contains a large amount of alcohol which dries extra oils from the skin.

How to use A/T/S Gel

This medication is for use on the skin only. Clean and dry the affected area as directed. Then apply a thin layer of the medication on the skin, usually once or twice a day or as directed by your doctor. Wash your hands after use.

Do not use large amounts or apply this more often or for a longer period than directed. Your condition will not clear faster, but the risk of side effects may be increased.

Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. Remember to use it at the same time(s) each day.

Avoid getting this medication in your eyes or inside the nose or mouth. If this occurs, rinse thoroughly with water.

Inform your doctor if your condition does not improve or if it worsens. It may take up to 3 months of regular use before the full benefits of this medication take effect.

Precautions

Before using erythromycin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other antibiotics (e.g., azithromycin, clarithromycin); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history.

This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.

It is not known if this medication passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.

Some products that may interact with this drug include: disulfiram, metronidazole, tinidazole, other skin products (especially those that contain clindamycin or causes peeling/irritated skin).

Overdose

This medicine may be harmful if swallowed. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.

Notes

Do not share this medication with others.

For the best results, this medication is often used as part of a total skin care program. Follow your doctor's recommendations.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage

Store the tightly-closed container at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C). This medication is flammable, so keep it away from heat and open flame. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.Information last revised July 2016. Copyright(c) 2016 First Databank, Inc.

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