Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP Last updated on RxList: 4/25/2022
Drug Description

What is Sumadan and how is it used?

Sumadan is a prescription medicine used to treat the symptoms of Acne and Seborrheic Dermatitis. Sumadan may be used alone or with other medications.

Sumadan belongs to a class of drugs called Acne Agents, Topical Combos; Antipsoriatics, Topical; Antiseborrheic Agents, Topical.

It is not known if Sumadan is safe and effective in children younger than 12 years of age.

What are the possible side effects of Sumadan?

Sumadan may cause serious side effects including:

  • hives,
  • difficulty breathing,
  • swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat,
  • cracked skin,
  • unusual weakness,
  • fatigue,
  • dark urine,
  • yellowing of the eyes or skin (jaundice),
  • fever,
  • persistent sore throat,
  • easy bruising,
  • unusual bleeding,
  • aching or swollen joints,
  • dizziness,
  • rash, and
  • itching

Get medical help right away, if you have any of the symptoms listed above.

The most common side effects of Sumadan include:

  • redness, irritation, or scaling of the skin may occur

Tell the doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

These are not all the possible side effects of Sumadan. For more information, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Sodium sulfacetamide is a sulfonamide with antibacterial activity while sulfur acts as a keratolytic agent. Chemically sodium sulfacetamide is N-[(4-aminophenyl) sulfonyl]- acetamide, monosodium salt, monohydrate. The structural formula is:

Sumadan® (Sodium Sulfacetamide & Sulfur) Structural Formula Illustration

Each mL of Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash contains 90 mg of sodium sulfacetamide and 45 mg of sulfur in a formulation consisting of: butylated hydroxytoluene, C12-15 alkyl benzoate, caprylyl glycol, cetyl alcohol, cholesterol, chrysanthemum dendranthema, dimethicone, disodium oleamido MIPA sulfosuccinate, edetate disodium, ethylene brassilate, glyceryl stearate, hexylene glycol, lemon oil, magnesium aluminum silicate, magnesium chloride, magnesium nitrate, methylchloroisothiazolinone, methylisothiazolinone, niacinamide, nonoxynol-20, octoxynol-5, purified water, PEG-100 stearate, phenoxyethanol, propylene glycol, sodium cocoyl isotheionite, sodium methyl cocoyl taurate, sodium thiosulfate, stearyl alcohol, xanthan gum.

Indications & Dosage

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Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash is indicated for the topical control of acne vulgaris, acne rosacea and seborrheic dermatitis.


Apply Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash once or twice daily to affected areas, or as directed by your physician. Wet skin and liberally apply to areas to be cleansed. Massage gently into skin for 10-20 seconds, working into a full lather, rinse thoroughly and pat dry. If drying occurs, it may be controlled by rinsing off Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash sooner or using less often.


Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash is available in a 16 oz. (454 g) bottle, NDC 43538-190-16.

Store at controlled room temperature 15°- 30° C (59°- 86° F). Protect from freezing.


Manufactured for: Medimetriks Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 383 Route 46 West Fairfield, NJ 07004-2402 USA. Revised: March 2013.


Skin Health: 15 Tips for Clear Skin See Slideshow
Side Effects & Drug Interactions


Although rare, sodium sulfacetamide may cause local irritation.


No Information Provided



Although rare, sensitivity to sodium sulfacetamide may occur. Therefore, caution and careful supervision should be observed when prescribing this drug for patients who may be prone to hypersensitivity to topical sulfonamides. Systemic toxic reactions such as agranulocytosis, acute hemolytic anemia, purpura hemorrhagica, drug fever, jaundice, and contact dermatitis indicate hypersensitivity to sulfonamides. Particular caution should be employed if areas of denuded or abraded skin are involved.

FOR EXTERNAL USE ONLY. Keep away from eyes. Keep out of reach of children. Keep container tightly closed.




If irritation develops, use of the product should be discontinued and appropriate therapy instituted. Patients should be carefully observed for possible local irritation or sensitization during long-term therapy. The object of this therapy is to achieve desquamation without irritation, but sodium sulfacetamide and sulfur can cause reddening and scaling of the epidermis. These side effects are not unusual in the treatment of acne vulgaris, but patients should be cautioned about the possibility.

Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis And Impairment Of Fertility

Long-term studies in animals have not been performed to evaluate carcinogenic potential.


Category C

Animal reproduction studies have not been conducted with Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash. It is also not known whether Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman or can affect reproduction capacity. Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash should be given to a pregnant woman only if clearly needed.

Nursing Mothers

It is not known whether sodium sulfacetamide is excreted in the human milk following topical use of Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash. However, small amounts of orally administered sulfonamides have been reported to be eliminated in human milk. In view of this and because many drugs are excreted in human milk, caution should be exercised when Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash is administered to a nursing woman.

Pediatric Use

Safety and effectiveness in children under the age of 12 have not been established.

Overdosage & Contraindications


No Information Provided


Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash are contraindicated for use by patients having known hypersensitivity to sulfonamides, sulfur or any other component of this preparation. Sumadan® (sodium sulfacetamide 9% & sulfur 4.5%) Wash is not to be used by patients with kidney disease.

Clinical Pharmacology


The most widely accepted mechanism of action of sulfonamides is the Woods-Fildes theory, which is based on the fact that sulfonamides act as competitive antagonists to para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA), an essential component for bacterial growth. While absorption through intact skin has not been determined, sodium sulfacetamide is readily absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract when taken orally and excreted in the urine, largely unchanged. The biological half-life has variously been reported as 7 to 12.8 hours. The exact mode of action of sulfur in the treatment of acne is unknown, but it has been reported that it inhibits the growth of Propionibacterium acnes and the formation of free fatty acids.

Medication Guide


Avoid contact with eyes, eyelids, lips and mucous membranes. If accidental contact occurs, rinse with water. If excessive irritation develops, discontinue use and consult your physician.

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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.

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