You know it all too well — that creeping, itching, irritating, annoying and crawling feeling you get when your scalp or your skin is aggravating you to no end … yikes … enough already! Is it eczema (aka atopic dermatitis)? Is it psoriasis? “What the heck is going on?” you ask.
Not knowing which condition is causing you grief can drive you nuts and make you a little crazy. So off to the doctor’s you go, and after a few tests, they prescribe for you: clobetasol
And you wonder, “What is clobetasol and why do I need this?“
OK, so here’s the skinny …
Clobetasol is a corticosteroid (steroid) used to treat skin conditions such as eczema (dermatitis) and psoriasis. It is a topical treatment that patients apply directly to the affected area(s) of the skin and comes in several different forms.
If you’ve been given this medication from your doctor, then it’s safe to say you’ve been diagnosed with one of these conditions. And depending on which form of medication you are given — and for which symptoms — determines which condition you are dealing with, as doctors use different forms of medication to treat different symptoms.
Uh, I see … so what are the different forms?
- Cream (used for redness, itching, swelling of the skin, and plaque psoriasis)
- Ointment (used for redness, itching, and swelling of the skin)
- Gel/Jelly (used for redness, itching, and swelling of the skin)
- Spray (used for plaque psoriasis)
- Solution (used for scalp problems)
- Foam (used for plaque psoriasis and scalp problems)
- Lotion (used for redness, itching, and swelling of the skin)
- Shampoo (used for scalp problems)
Patients should apply the medication directly to the affected area no more than 2 to 3 times a day, and should not exceed 50 g in a single week unless prescribed that way by your doctor. It is not recommended for children under 12 and in some cases children under 16.
So if you think exceeding the recommended dosage will clear up your skin faster, and have you Friday night ready, think again, because it won’t. And more than likely you will only cause further damage to your skin. And that’s not helpful for you, your little black dress, or your Friday night outing. Thus, be careful to follow the instructions accordingly, and you just might get to wear that little black dress after all!
OK, I get it … but what other symptoms should I look for?
Well, obviously the constant itching is a good indicator that something is wrong. And if you scratch that area too much, you will end up with more inflammation than you started with.
So for eczema, other symptoms might be:
- Dry, sensitive skin
- Red, inflamed skin
- Recurring rash
- Scaly areas
- Rough, leathery patches
- Oozing or crusting over the rash
- Dark colored patches of skin
As for psoriasis, there are several different types (plaque, guttate, scalp, inverse, nail, pustular, erythrodermic) and several different sub-categories of those types, and each one goes through its own cycle of flaring up and subsiding, and even going into complete remission. Psoriasis is a bit more complex than eczema and varies from person to person. Although, each type is medically treated accordingly.
Some other symptoms you might experience with psoriasis are:
- Red patches of skin covered with silvery scales
- Small scaling spots
- Dry cracked skin that may bleed (lesions)
- Itching and burning at the same time
- Thickened, ridged or pitted nails
- Swollen and stiff joints.
Got it! But what are the side effects of this medication?
Glad you asked. The good news is, there aren’t too many. The most common are burning and stinging in the area where applied. Which, as long as it goes away, you will be fine because your body just needs to adjust to the medication. Other less common side effects are burning sensation, dry skin, flushing of the skin, scaling, severe redness or swelling of the skin, skin rash, oozing and thinning of the skin with easy bruising. But of course, if you experience any of these effects on a continuous basis, you need only contact your doctor.
Hmm … so is it expensive?
Nothing is expensive when you have Optum Perks at your fingertips! The best prescription discount coupons you can find will be right there ready for you to use.