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Nizoral

Last reviewed on RxList: 2/13/2017
Nizoral Patient Information Including Side Effects

What are the possible side effects of ketoconazole (Nizoral)?

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

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeat;
  • easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness;
  • numbness or tingly feeling;
  • severe depression, confusion, or thoughts of hurting yourself; or
  • nausea, stomach pain, low fever, loss of appetite, weakness, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • mild nausea, vomiting, or stomach pain;
  • mild itching or skin rash;
  • headache;
  • dizziness;
  • breast swelling; or
  • impotence or loss of interest in sex.

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 Nizoral (ketoconazole) Side Effects Center for a complete guide to possible side effects

What is the most important information I should know about ketoconazole (Nizoral)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to ketoconazole, or if you are also taking triazolam (Halcion).

Before taking ketoconazole, tell your doctor if you have liver disease, kidney disease, a heart rhythm disorder, decreased stomach acid (achlorhydria), or a history of "Long QT syndrome."

Take this medication for the entire length of time prescribed by your doctor. Your symptoms may get better before the infection is completely treated. Ketoconazole will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu.

Avoid taking antacids or stomach acid reducers (Tagamet, Pepcid, Axid, Zantac, and others) for at least 2 hours after you have taken your dose of ketoconazole. These medications can make it harder for the ketoconazole tablet to dissolve in your stomach.

Avoid drinking alcohol. It may cause unpleasant side effects while you are taking ketoconazole.

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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.

Nizoral Patient Information including How Should I Take

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking ketoconazole (Nizoral)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to ketoconazole, or if you are also taking triazolam (Halcion).

If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take ketoconazole:

  • decreased stomach acid (achlorhydria);
  • liver disease;
  • kidney disease;
  • a heart rhythm disorder; or
  • a personal or family history of "Long QT syndrome."

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether ketoconazole is harmful to an unborn baby. Before you take this medication, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

Ketoconazole may pass into breast milk and could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take ketoconazole (Nizoral)?

Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Ketoconazole works best if you take it with food.

Take this medication for the entire length of time prescribed by your doctor. Your symptoms may get better before the infection is completely treated. Ketoconazole will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu.

To be sure this medication is not causing harmful effects, your liver function may need to be checked with blood tests on a regular basis. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.

Store ketoconazole at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Nizoral Patient Information including If I Miss a Dose

What happens if I miss a dose (Nizoral)?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at your next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose (Nizoral)?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. Symptoms of a ketoconazole overdose are not known.

What should I avoid while taking ketoconazole (Nizoral)?

Avoid taking antacids or stomach acid reducers (Tagamet, Pepcid, Axid, Zantac, and others) for at least 2 hours after you have taken your dose of ketoconazole. These medications can make it harder for the ketoconazole tablet to dissolve in your stomach.

Avoid drinking alcohol. It may cause unpleasant side effects while you are taking ketoconazole.

What other drugs will affect ketoconazole (Nizoral)?

Many drugs can interact with ketoconazole. Below is just a partial list. Tell your doctor if you are using:

  • acetaminophen (Tylenol);
  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Sandimmune, Neoral);
  • clopidogrel (Plavix);
  • digoxin (digitalis, Lanoxin);
  • tacrolimus ((Prograf);
  • loratadine (Alavert, Claritin, Tavist ND);
  • methylprednisolone (Medrol);
  • phenytoin (Dilantin);
  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane);
  • diabetes medication you take by mouth;
  • a sedative such as midazolam (Versed);
  • a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin);
  • cancer medications;
  • birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy;
  • methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall);
  • cholesterol medications such as niacin (Advicor), atorvastatin (Lipitor), lovastatin (Altocor, Mevacor), simvastatin (Zocor), and others; or
  • medications to treat HIV or AIDS.

This list is not complete and there are many other drugs that can interact with ketoconazole. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about ketoconazole.


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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