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Aldara

USER REVIEWS

Comment from: Rebecca, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: September 21

I was diagnosed with BCC on the left side of my nose in the fall of 2007 and underwent surgery. It recurred in 2009 again having surgery with cryosurgery (freezing). By May 2010 it recurred. I was tired of having surgery and I wanted the cancer gone, so I decided to try Aldara. I read the inset that came with it understanding that it is a topical chemotherapy that works with your immune system. I followed the directions exactly,using it for 6 weeks, 5 days of use with 2 days off, using the minimal amount to cover the area, leaving it on for no more than 8 hours and washing it off, staying out of the sun, and not covering it tightly when going out. But by week 3, I had a severe reaction with redness, swelling, oozing, bleeding, scabbing, crusting, itching, fatigue, headaches. It was bad and I almost quit. But the insert mentioned all these side effects, so I decided to cotinue. I am so glad I did. It is now 4 weeks after finishing the six week course and my skin looks so good and my dermatologist gave me an all clear/cancer gone. I wish I had used it when first diagnosed and I wouldn't have the scar from the previous two surgeries. I will use it again if I have any BCC in the future. But, I do believe it is a treatment only for the healthy as it does work with your immune system. From the many reviews I've read, it doesn't seem that a lot of the doctors are prescribing it correctly and with the info patients need and that is way it is so important patient take prescriptions seriously and follow the medication directions exactly and question the doctor if his instructions vary from the medicine.

Related Reading: cancer | aldara | fatigue

Comment from: Debbie, 45-54 on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: March 11

I have been using this medication for years. Depending on the basil cell spot, the cream reacts differently. I have had some spots that grew to the size of a dollar coin, very painful, and the cancer spot has been eradicated. Some spots react with a small red lumpy itchy area the size of a pencil eraser. The only side effect physically is that I get very tired. I feel this cream is very effective, however, each person reacts differently. I hope this review is helpful.

Comment from: 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: March 11

I am on week 5 of a 6week treatment for BCC on my chest. The BCC was the size of a pencil eraser and after applying Aldara it is now 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Very itchy, thick, and altogether disgusting looking. My derm says it's doing its job. It made areas nearby flare up and I was told I have other skin damage that the drug is finding. I will be glad when this is over next week.

Comment from: Anne, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: April 18

After reading some of these reviews I was very concerned about using Aldara. I decided to go ahead and had no side effects at all. The site on my back became a little sore after about 3 weeks and scabbed.The scab came off and left a pink area.After 6 weeks of the treatment it is now a faint pink mark and I am to see the dermatologist in 4 weeks to see if it has gone.Everyone is different and not everyone suffers bad side effects. I do think that people who have a bad experience report more than those of us who have not, hence my report.

Comment from: Golden Girl, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: May 03

I was prescribed this med. for basal cell carcinoma on my face. The carcinoma was so tiny in size, it was barely noticeable. However, by the time my 8 week treatment was over, it was almost the size of a silver dollar. The first three weeks, I applied it 3 times a week. Then the dermatologist examined me and changed the treatment to 2 times a week until the end of the 8 weeks. It was fire engine red and scabby--truly scary and ugly. However, it did not burn or itch. I had no other side effects. I am happy to report it has been 4 weeks since I finished the treatment, the carcinoma is gone and my skin looks almost normal--just a light pink. When the dermatolist examined me yesterday, she said the light pink would eventually fade to my normal skin tone. However, she suggested if I'd like to hurry that process, she could laser it (said the laser disburses the pink) and there would be no evidence my face had been treated.I encourage anyone who worries (as I did) during the treatment that they will be scared forever, don't give up and don't worry about your eventual appearance. FYI, I am a very vain woman so if I'm happy with the outcome, I think you will be too.

Related Reading: itch

Comment from: Rivertest1, 75 or over Female on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: August 01

I was told to apply Aldara to six areas of my face and forehead - 3x a week for 4 weeks. Within ten days I had 24 angry areas and by the time I'd finished there were 37! In between I had all the classic flu-like symptoms - muscle, head and back ache, fever, no energy or appetite, insomnia and swollen glands. But - within a week of stopping the treatment, and applying an antibiotic cream (Fucidin), my face was pretty well back to normal. Now, six weeks after starting, I am completely back to normal with no scarring and a face like a baby's bottom! It's definitely not easy - and you have to have confidence in it - but at the end of the day it's results that count and in my case it was well worth all the hassle. The biggest problem is lack of sleep and if you have to treat both cheeks, as I did, the warmth of the pillow makes the inflammation worse and you wind up sleeping in ten minute bites. Air conditioning helps!

Related Reading: flu | fever

Comment from: Moray, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months Published: February 18

My husband was prescribed this treatment in October, 3 months supply to ba taken 5 night out of 7. No follow up in-between & no questions asked re his general health (blood pressure etc.) Admitted to hospital with heart failure - very rapid heart beat, swelling with fluid retention and extremely high blood pressure in December.It took me to look up the Aldara web site & find these can be rare side effects. Perhaps the drs should at least take your blood pressure before prescribing this cream, from something that is not serious to making something life threatening. Please take care with this.

Comment from: Fair and Freckled, 65-74 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: August 10

The doctor told me the unusual skin patch on my nose was pre-pre cancerous BCC. A few days after I started applying the creme, it looked worse. The doctor's guidance was to take a break of a few days, then try again, once every two days. It is working! It also worked for a large patch of keratonisis. NOT USUALLY MENTIONED IN THESE REVIEWS BUT WORTH NOTING: one envelope may be sufficient for 2-3 applications. At the recomendation of my doctor, I use only the tiniest of dabs, and it works. It helps avoid the severe reactions, and it still heals. I still have several weeks to go before I see the final results, but so far, so good!

Comment from: 45-54 Female on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: September 02

This medication is much more aggressive than others I have used like Effudex, Carac and Solareze. The reaction to the teated site is severe but if you want to get rid of the cancer without surgery, Aldara is the stuff. I treated my forehead and back nightly for 14 days. Severe redness and swelling. I also treated my lip for 18 days. That was absolutely miserable but effective. I would not suggest doing a lot of spots at the same time.

Related Reading: carac | cancer

Comment from: kburnett, 35-44 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: May 26

I used this for basal cell carcinoma and it did work. However, users should understand that this is a topical form of chemotherapy and that it does give you very minor (in comparison to systemic chemo) chemo like symptoms. Not fun, but effective.

Comment from: stramber, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: May 29

Horrific Adverse events with it. Burnt my genitals and anus and blisters. Red hot welt and hives on tummy. Itch hives and blisters and boils has driven me mad and NOTHING works on it. Not cortisone cream nothing ! Am getting all manner of infections. Hurt my hearing now get an echo. My sight is not as good.

Related Reading: hives | itch | boils

Comment from: sb55, 19-24 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: December 17

I had/have a pretty severe case of gw. Probably nearing about 30 gws. I was so horrified and disgusted every time i looked at it. I read some of the reviews on here before I tried aldara and was terrified. I've done three treatments of aldara and have had MAJOR improvement. Several of them have vanished and the others have reduced in size. I have had very little discomfort from it. Yes, I can certainly feel it when it's on and am a little sensitive the next day but nothing unbearable. Totally recommend it!

Related Reading: aldara

Comment from: 19-24 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: August 09

I had a little grouping of about 3 or 4 warts in the area between my vagina and anus. In two weeks time these warts were completely gone with Aldara. This medicine worked great however it was uncomfortable. After a few uses the area became sore and irritated but the outcome was worth a little discomfort. My doctor said she believes this is the best treatment for warts, as it doesn't leave scars and it may help prevent new warts from growing in the same area. This medicine is very expensive though, a one month supply with no insurance runs about $300, so obviously insurance helps. But a little of this medicine goes a long long way so you can make the medicine (and your money) go much further by only using a half packet at a time.

Related Reading: warts | scars

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Comment from: NA, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: January 23

I've tried this medication twice for BCC on the chest and I became extremely toxic both times so I stopped using it after 3-4 weeks (out of 8 week prescriptions). I experienced every extreme side effect and recently learned that this drug can be dangerous long term. I'm looking for alternatives and I don't recommend it.

Comment from: Stramber, on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: July 23

Am still having Adverse Events from this even tho stopped 5 l/2 months ago. Used on BCC on my leg. Getting all sorts of infections still and mucos in the throat I think it attacks the mucos membranes. Adverse reactions - affected genitals which is often the case in allergic reations. Plus Hives on tummy - Phenergan an antihistamine gave some relief although still have the hives and red rash (erythema) but are getting smaller. For the Anus and genital area this drug seems to have set up an eczma of this area giving an itch - little lumps under the skin like a nettle rash ! and red sore skin with sweating of that area and watery blisters.Can't bear to wear undies - only skirts. For the eczma take some Eve.Primrose Oil x 3 caps a day. Get a good brand name (not generic) cortisone cream rub in then I found a Dermeze Ointment on after that. Sometimes a baby's rash powder helped. Please if your have had success with treating the side effects let us all know.

Related Reading: hives | phenergan | rash

Comment from: coolcat1717, 19-24 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: April 25

I was very satisfied with this product. I was sceptical at first because of some of the reviews that I read on this website but I only had one reaction and it was just a small sore. My advise to anyone that uses this product is to use very little amounts on the wart, small enough to barely cover the surface of the wart. Another thing is that if you do get a sore you can use Neosporin on it if it is external, wait until it clears up and then continue the use. Dont be afraid of some of the reviews just use as directed and you should be fine, but its different for everyone.

Comment from: Dorotheia, 75 or over on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: January 30

side effects, skin blisters on my hose and cheeks, my face is red from my cheeks to my chin. An other web page medical report "skin color changes that do not go away". Stay away from Aldara. I stopped after about three days.

Related Reading: aldara

Comment from: Liz, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months Published: March 24

Hi I have been using this cream for the last four weeks with two more to go thank goodness I would never have believed that a cream could make you feel so yuk ranging from aches,pains,tiredness,itching,blistering,it does seem to be doing what it says it does by destroying the cells I feel a bit of a fraud really as to any one else it's only a cream but it really does make you feel awful (is it just me) oh well two weeks left fingers crossed

Comment from: Rivertest1, 75 or over Female on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: June 29

I'm into week 3 of a 4 week course, applying Aldara 3 times a week. Week 1 was a doddle but it soon became apparent that my doctor's instruction - to apply it to six areas of my face, and forehead - was optimistic. By the end of week 2 I had 16 bright patches rather than 6 and they are now starting to go brown. I have absolute confidence in my doctor, and will see it through, but it's not easy. The flu like symptoms, sore throat, swollen glands, toothache and, above all, sleeplessness, are all to evident. I didn't know this was a chemo-type drug before I started on it - or I would probably have opted to avoid it. In retrospect, if the treatment saves me 16 Mohs ops. I'll be a very happy camper but, like old age, it's not for sissies!

Related Reading: flu | sore throat | toothache

Comment from: 35-44 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: March 27

Used all over face 1x/week for 10 weeks in 2006 for several tiny bccs on central face and to catch any non-visible ones. The diagnosed bccs were no longer find-able by Mohs surgeon at 12 weeks, so no surgery necessary then. Now, two other suspicious areas cropped up and derm prescribed Aldara 2x/week for central face area only. Flu-like symptoms with fatigue, coughing both treatment times. spots come up red and look bad in weeks 3-5, then only kind of red on day 2 after each treatment, coinciding with the fatigue. severity of flu reaction varies with how much cream I use. THis time I wear latex gloves to apply, try to use very little, and wash off thoroughly in am. Nearly finished with treatment, will update after treatment ends and MD checks sites. (just fyi Doc says 20% of people lack some receptor that makes the medicine work. Its an immune response modifier, so I'm not surprised it has some systemic effect).

Related Reading: flu | fatigue

Comment from: 19-24 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: December 08

I was prescribed Aldara back in October. My doctor instructed my to apply the cream three times a week for six weeks and then come back for a follow up. The first two applications were fine. I had no reactions and everything was painless. I decided to research Aldara and was overwhelmed by all the negative and horrifying stories, that I decided to stop applying the cream all together. About two weeks passed and in that time I had researched all these home remedies for warts such as apple cider vinegar and vitamin e oil. The apple cider vinegar BURNED!! I could not handle that! I said what the heck and after my skin completely healed from the ACV, I continued using the aldara. I wish I never stopped using the cream! It has been GREAT with getting rid of the warts. There is a SIGNIFICANT improvement and the warts are almost completely gone! Yes my skin was irritated and it does look worse before it gets better. I found that the cream is just as effective if you wait more days in between. It was difficult for me to do every other day because my skin would get irritated and burn and itch. Sometimes I had to wait 2 or three days before applying the cream again but it is better than applying the cream to already irritated skin, as this can be painful and set back healing time. I had to COMPLETELY stop having sex. My skin was so sensitive to the treatment that sex would just make things worse for my recovery. I used a Q-tip when applying the cream because on me, if I applied the cream to areas of my skin that did not have warts then it would get very irritated. I just had my six-week check up and my warts are almost gone. To anyone that has doubts, just hang in there if you can. A lot of the symptoms listed here are common and expected. It gets worse before it gets better and I never imagined that I would look normal again but I do!

Related Reading: aldara | warts | vitamin e

Comment from: 19-24 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: April 07

I was told to use only at bedtime 3 days a week.. mine cleared up in as quick as two weeks. I am very happy with this medication and had no side effects to it. Everyone's body is different.. it's worth giving it a try.. also it has been 2 years since I was diagnosed with genital warts and that is when I started using Aldara. I only had to use a couple of weeks, and have had one minor outbreak since. I would recommend this to anyone..

Comment from: 19-24 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: May 27

I'm a 23 year old female and I was diagnosed with HPV/genital warts about a month and a half ago. I was given the option to get them burned off or try Aldara. Because they are in a sensitive spot (my perineum), I opted to try the Aldara. I was completely freaked out by reading the reviews (severe burning, itching, swelling, etc) but I really didn't have any other appealing option. I put it on the first time and was waiting for something horrible to happen but nothing ever did. It will make the area you put it on more sensitive, almost like chaffing, but it wasn't anything I couldn't handle. Because of that there was some itching but I just put Cortizone cream on and the discomfort went away. I only had 4-5 warts so my case wasn't extreme by any means, but all of them are gone except for the biggest one which has almost disappeared. I would definitely recommend this as an initial treatment and if your side effects are too uncomfortable than seek alternative treatment (such as acid). The reason I say this is because my doctor told me that Aldara will "train" your body to fight off the warts so they won't keep coming back and you won't have to worry so much about outbreaks. Even though I'm not done with treatment I've had a pretty good experience.

Related Reading: hpv

Comment from: [email protected], 65-74 Female on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: December 13

aside effect for me was sore and sensitive mouth and tongue, initally severe (couldn't even use toothpaste) then milder. also absolutely killed my taste buds. they came back about a month or two after i stopped using aldara.

Related Reading: aldara

Comment from: 19-24 Female on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: September 28

trichloracidic acid works much better and faster

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