Econazole for fungal skin and nail infections (Pevaryl)

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Apply the cream twice a day for a skin infection.

Apply the cream once a day for a nail infection. Cover with a plaster to keep the cream in contact with the nail.

Continue to use the cream for a week or so after all signs of the infection have gone.

Type of medicineAn antifungal
Used forFungal skin and nail infections
Also calledPevaryl®
Available asCream

Infections caused by a fungus or a yeast (a type of fungus) can affect many different areas of the body - some examples are fungal groin infections, fungal sweat rashes, athlete's foot, and fungal nail infections. Econazole eases the symptoms of infections such as these by killing the fungi causing the infection. Econazole cream is available on prescription, and you can also buy it without a prescription at a pharmacy.

Econazole is a medicine which is also used to treat vaginal thrush. There is information about this in the separate medicine leaflet called Econazole for vaginal thrush.

To make sure this is the right treatment for you, before you start using econazole make sure your doctor or pharmacist knows:

  • If you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Although econazole is not known to be harmful to babies, you should only use medicines on the recommendation of a doctor while you are expecting or breast-feeding a baby.
  • If you are taking any other medicines or using any other creams. This includes any medicines which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a medicine or cream.
  • Before you start the treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from inside the pack. It will give you more information about econazole and how to apply it.
  • Wash and dry the infected area of skin before you apply econazole. You will need to use the cream regularly for a few weeks. Once all signs of your infection have gone, continue to use it for a further one or two weeks, as this will help to prevent the infection from coming back.
  • If you have been given econazole cream to treat a skin infection, apply a small amount of the cream to the affected area twice each day (ideally, in the morning and the evening). Rub it in gently.
  • If you are using econazole cream to treat a nail infection, apply the cream to the infected nail once a day, and then cover the area with a plaster or similar dressing.
  • Remember to wash your hands carefully after using econazole, as this will help to prevent the infection from spreading to other parts of your body. Also, use a separate towel to other people until your infection clears up.
  • Fungal infections often occur in warm, moist areas of the body. After washing or showering, make sure that all areas of your skin are dried well, particularly areas such as skin folds and between your toes.
  • As a guide, infections such as athelete's foot usually clear up within a week or so of treatment, although infections affecting some other areas of the body can take slightly longer. If there are no signs of improvement within two weeks of using econazole, you should make an appointment to see your doctor for advice.

Econazole is unlikely to cause any serious side-effects. It can cause some irritation when it is used at first, and a few people experience mild allergic-type reactions (such as redness and itching). If you experience these or any other symptoms, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for further advice.

  • Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.

This preparation is for use on the skin only. If someone swallows some of it, go to the accident and emergency department of your local hospital. Take the container with you, even if it is empty.

This medicine is for you. Never give it to other people even if their condition appears to be the same as yours.

Do not keep out-of-date or unwanted medicines. Take them to your local pharmacy which will dispose of them for you.

If you have any questions about this medicine ask your pharmacist.

Further reading & references

  • Manufacturer's PIL, Pevaryl® 1% Topical Cream; Janssen-Cilag Ltd, The electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated July 2014.
  • British National Formulary; 68th Edition (Sep 2014) British Medical Association and Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, London

Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. EMIS has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.

Original Author:
Helen Allen
Current Version:
Peer Reviewer:
Dr Helen Huins
Document ID:
13829 (v2)
Last Checked:
Next Review:
The Information Standard - certified member

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