Acne is a skin disease which affects millions of people around the world and can range from being non-severe to acutely severe developing in forms of nodules and cysts in acute cases.
It has been noted by the Food and Drug Administration (USA) , that in the past year, 17 million prescriptions were written by physicians for acne treating products and clindamycin and retinoid accounted for 8 million out of the total 17 million prescriptions.
Clindamycin, as such, comes forth as an important treatment for acne.
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What is Clindamycin?
Clindamycin is an antibiotic useful for the treatment of infections.
It is of the lincosamide class and is usually used to treat infections with anaerobic bacteria. Clindamycin might be useful in skin and soft-tissue infection caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), commonly known as the Mercer.
Clindamycin is a common topical treatment for acne.
Topical application of Clindamycin phosphate can be used to treat mild or moderate inflammatory or mixed acne.
It works by slowing or stopping the growth of bacteria that causes acne and also by reducing the swelling.
How Clindamycin is used to treat acne
Though Clindamycin is very useful as an oral antibiotic for acne, it is widely prescribed as a topical antibiotic.
The use of Clindamycin together with Benzoyl Peroxide offers more effective treatment of acne than the use of either of the two products by themselves.
Application of Clindamycin
Topical Clindamycin comes as a foam solution, gel, lotion or cream to apply to the skin.
While the foam and gel solutions are usually applied once a day, the lotion is usually applied twice a day and preferably at around the same time every day.
The face should be cleaned with mild and non-medicated soap and pat dry before the application of clindamycin.
Dosage of Clindamycin
When being topically used, a thin coat of it should be applied, twice a day.
Also, the frequency of its application must not be altered without the doctor’s advice.
Clindamycin Phosphate is, as such widely used in the following dosage forms:
- Injection solution: 150mg/ml
- Topical foam/gel/lotion: 1%
- Vaginal cream: 2%
- Vaginal suppository: 100mg
It should be kept tightly closed (no puncturing or incineration of the container) in the container and away from excessive heat and moisture.
It should also not be allowed to freeze. Clindamycin foam should not be exposed to a temperature of higher than 120F (49C).
Ways of its proper disposal should be discussed with the pharmacist.
Possible Side effects of Clindamycin
- Skin problem: It causes dryness, burning, itching, and peeling of skin (lotion; solution), erythema or redness (foam, lotion or solution), oiliness (gel, lotion), new pimples or blemishes.
- Infection: 10% of the consumers have exhibited fungal infection in cases of vaginal application.
- Pseudomembranous colitis: Commonly known as an inflammation of the colon, though occurs with the use of other antibiotics as well, is a lethal condition commonly associated with clindamycin.
- Adverse drug reaction: It includes diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, cramps rashes, headache, watery or bloody stool. Diarrhea, bloody diarrhea and inflammation of the colon have been widely reported to the Food and Drug Administration, USA.
- Inflammatory bowel disease: In case of any early history of IBD or severe diarrhea, the doctor must be informed because they constitute the side effects and the doctor may stop the use of clindamycin.
- Nursing: Orally taken Clindamycin is reported to have been secreted in the breast milk so nursing mothers are advised to avoid its use unless the doctor advises
- Allergies: The doctor must be informed of any kind of allergy from Clindamycin, Lincomycin or any other medication. He must also be informed of all the non-prescriptive, prescriptive, herbal, nutritional supplements and medicines that are being consumed. Erythromycin (EES, E-Mycin, Erythrocin) and other topical medicines must be mentioned so that the doctor can check you for side effects. The doctor must also be informed of any early history of asthma or eczema.
- Surgery: If you are having surgery, even if it is a dental surgery, the doctor must be informed that you are using Topical Clindamycin.
- Skin products: The use of abrasive or medicated soap or skin products that contain alcohol may intensify and speed up the side effects of Topical Clindamycin. Any such products must, therefore, be avoided during the Clindamycin period. Talk to the doctor before using any skin care product.
- Exposure: any exposure to Sunlight, sunlamps or tanning must be avoided as Clindamycin is believed to make the skin sensitive. In case it cannot be avoided the skin must be protected through clothing.
- Pediatric use: Safety and effectiveness in children below the age of 12 have not been established.
- Pregnancy: there have been no adequate or well-controlled studies in pregnant women, however, it is advised that its use must be discussed with the doctor if you are pregnant, or avoided altogether.
Possible Drug Interactions
Clindamycin possesses neuromuscular blocking properties that may enhance the activity of other neuromuscular blocking agents.
It must, therefore, be used with extreme carefulness and caution by patients receiving any such agents.
Popular Clindamycin Brands
BeznaClin: It usually comes in the form of a topical gel and is formed of the combination of Clindamycin Phosphate and Benzoyl Peroxide. Each gram of BenzaClin topical gel contains 10 mg (1%) Clindamycin as phosphate.
Clindoxyl Gel: This is also a combination product containing two medications, Clindamycin and Benzoyl Peroxide. It should be applied to the skin area once daily before bedtime. Any unused gel should be discarded after 120 days.
Dalacin C: It comes in form of a capsule or injection solution. A capsule is either 150 mg or 300 mg. When taken intravenously, the recommended dose is 600 mg to 900 mg every 6 hours.
Cleocin T: A thin layer should be applied on the affected area, twice a day. It might take between 2 to 6 weeks to notice any improvement. The full effect is visible only after 12 weeks.
Customer Review of Clindamycin
Most people liked Clindamycin as a treatment for acne and also recommended it to others. In spite of the side effects it may cause, if proper precautions are not taken, it proved quite effective.
We did an analysis of online user comments to find out what users think about the treatment. Here is the summary of the same:
What consumers liked about Clindamycin
Reduces spots: Unlike other products that treat acne but have no effect on the spots it leaves, Clindamycin is believed to have healed the marks or scars and make skin smoother.
Quick and efficient: Most buyers find that the treatment is very quick and efficient. In fact, in some cases, Clindamycin has shown results in two nights only.
It is quick in healing and leaves the skin less red and smoother. In some cases, where patients had almost given up, it has been the only medication to have made any difference to the acne.
Not age or gender-specific: According to our analysis of customer reviews It seems to work with both gender and all ages. It was very effective for a 40+ male and the only medication that helped a 45+ female to get rid of her acne problems.
What consumers did not like about Clindamycin
Bad smell: Some users had trouble with the smell of the drug. The medication of Clindamycin stings, leaving a bad smell.
A few have also mentioned that it also often either leaves the skin oily, like a sticky film over the face or causes dryness in the first month of its usage, causing skin irritation.
Not permanent: A few users mentioned that the fix affected by Clindamycin is not very permanent and might cause a re-growth of acne when medication is stopped.
They also noticed that it makes the acne situation worse before starting to heal it.
Not effective alone: According to some of the users of Clindamycin, it is most effective when done in combination with other products.
It is most widely combined with Benzoyl Peroxide. This combination is more effective than the use of either of these products by themselves.
Stops working abruptly: Some buyers believe that the result of using Clindamycin is often irregular.
It works effectively for some time and then stops working abruptly. It is believed that over a period of time the bacteria develop immunity against Clindamycin because of rigorous exposure to the product.
In spite of having various side effects, Clindamycin has proved to be an effective and quick medication for treating acne.
It has proven to be effective where no other medication has helped some people.
Though it is more efficient when used in combination with other medications, specifically Benzoyl Peroxide, it is singularly effective in treating both acne outbursts as well as acne scars.
It has been highly recommended by its consumers and when used routinely, may show signs of healing in a few weeks or even days.