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Finacea Gel

Last reviewed on RxList: 8/29/2016
Finacea Gel Patient Information Including Side Effects

Brand Names: Azelex, Finacea, Finacea Plus, Finevin

Generic Name: azelaic acid topical (Pronunciation: AZ eh LAY ik AS id)

What is azelaic acid topical (Finacea Gel)?

Azelaic acid is a naturally occurring acid. It helps the skin to renew itself more quickly and therefore reduces pimple and blackhead formation. It also helps to kill the bacteria that cause acne and rosacea.

Azelaic acid topical (for the skin) is used to treat acne and rosacea.

Azelaic acid topical may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of azelaic acid topical (Finacea Gel)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using this medication and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • severe burning, stinging, or warmth;
  • severe itching or tingling;
  • severe redness, dryness, peeling, or other irritation; or
  • changes in skin color.

Less serious side effects are more likely, and you may have none at all.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the Finacea Gel (azelaic acid) Side Effects Center for a complete guide to possible side effects

What is the most important information I should know about azelaic acid topical (Finacea Gel)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to azelaic acid or propylene glycol.

Avoid getting this medication in your eyes, nose, mouth, rectum, or vagina. Do not use on sunburned, windburned, dry, chapped, irritated, or broken skin. Wait until these conditions have healed before using this medication.

Do not cover the area after applying azelaic acid. Doing so could cause too much medicine to be absorbed by your body and could be harmful.

It may take up 4 weeks or longer before your symptoms improve. Keep using the medication as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 12 weeks of treatment.

If you have excessive burning, dryness, or irritation, ask your doctor about using azelaic acid once daily.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Finacea Gel Patient Information including How Should I Take

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using azelaic acid topical (Finacea Gel)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to azelaic acid or propylene glycol.

FDA pregnancy category B. Azelaic acid topical is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

It is not known whether azelaic acid topical passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I use azelaic acid topical (Finacea Gel)?

Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Wash your hands before and after applying this medication.

Clean the affected area with a mild soap or a soapless cleansing lotion and pat dry with a soft towel. Apply the medication as directed.

Azelaic acid topical is usually applied twice daily, in the morning and at bedtime. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Do not cover the affected area after applying azelaic acid. Doing so could cause too much medicine to be absorbed by the body and could be harmful.

It may take up 4 weeks or longer before your symptoms improve. Keep using the medication as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 12 weeks of treatment.

If you have excessive burning, dryness, or irritation, ask your doctor about using azelaic acid once daily.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Finacea Gel Patient Information including If I Miss a Dose

What happens if I miss a dose (Finacea Gel)?

Apply the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose (Finacea Gel)?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include some of the serious side effects listed in this medication guide.

What should I avoid while using azelaic acid topical (Finacea Gel)?

Avoid getting this medication in your eyes, nose, mouth, rectum, or vagina. If this does happen, rinse with water. Do not use on sunburned, windburned, dry, chapped, irritated, or broken skin. Wait until these conditions have healed before using this medication.

Avoid using other medications on the areas you treat with azelaic acid topical unless your doctor tells you to.

Avoid using skin products that can cause irritation, such as harsh soaps or skin cleansers, or skin products with alcohol, spices, astringents, or lime.

Your doctor may recommend avoiding spicy foods, hot foods or drinks, alcoholic beverages and other foods or beverages that may cause flushing or redness of the skin during treatment with azelaic acid topical.

Do not cover the area after applying azelaic acid. Doing so could cause too much medicine to be absorbed by your body and could be harmful.

What other drugs will affect azelaic acid topical (Finacea Gel)?

It is not likely that other drugs you take orally or inject will have an effect on topically applied azelaic acid. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about azelaic acid topical.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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