Vaginal thrush is a common problem affecting women.
Miconazole is an antifungal medicine. Side-effects are unlikely but may include mild skin irritation or itching.
Remember to complete the course of treatment. If your symptoms recur, speak with your doctor as a repeat course of treatment may be needed.
About miconazole for vaginal thrush
|Type of medicine||An antifungal|
|Used for||Vaginal thrush|
|Available as||Vaginal cream, vaginal capsule|
Many women have an occasional bout of vaginal thrush. It is due to an infection with a yeast fungus called Candida spp. Most cases of thrush are caused by the yeast called Candida albicans but other types of Candida spp. can also cause thrush. Common symptoms of vaginal thrush are itching, soreness, and redness around the outside of the vagina and a thick, creamy white, odourless vaginal discharge. Miconazole works by killing the yeast fungus causing the infection.
There are a couple of miconazole products available to treat vaginal thrush. There is a vaginal cream which is usually inserted high into the vagina using an applicator. It can also be applied to the area around the outside of the vagina to relieve itching and soreness. There is also a 'vaginal capsule' - this is inserted into the vagina in a similar way to a pessary.
Other forms of miconazole are available but these are used to treat fungal skin infections elsewhere on the body. There are separate medicine leaflets called Miconazole for skin infections and Miconazole for oral thrush which give more information about these.
Before using miconazole
Some medicines are not suitable for people with certain conditions, and sometimes a medicine may only be used if extra care is taken. For these reasons, before you start using miconazole it is important that your doctor knows:
- If you are pregnant. It is important that you tell your doctor if you are expecting a baby, as you may need to use miconazole for a longer period of time during pregnancy than is usually recommended.
- If you are under 18 years of age.
- If you are taking any other medicines. This is important because miconazole can alter the way medicines such as warfarin work.
- If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a medicine.
How to use miconazole for vaginal thrush
- Before starting this treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from inside the pack. It will give you more information about how to use the miconazole preparation you have been given.
- If you have been prescribed a Gyno-Daktarin® vaginal capsule, you will have been given a single dose to use before going to bed. Remove the vaginal capsule from the packaging and push it gently into your vagina as high as possible using your finger.
- If you have been prescribed Gyno-Daktarin® cream, you will either be asked to use the cream once a day for 10-14 days, or twice a day for seven days. Pierce the seal on the tube and attach one of the disposable applicators to the tube. Squeeze the cream into the applicator until the plunger reaches the 'stop' mark. Remove the applicator from the tube, and then insert the cream-filled end of the applicator into your vagina as high as it is comfortable for you. Push the plunger to release the cream into your vagina. Throw away the applicator after use.
- If you have been told to use Gyno-Daktarin® cream only on the area around the outside of your vagina, apply it twice each day and rub it in gently.
Getting the most from your treatment
- Use miconazole exactly as your doctor tells you to. Remember to complete the course of treatment (even if you are having your period) as this will help to prevent the infection from coming back. If your symptoms do recur, go back to see your doctor for further advice, as you may need to repeat the course of treatment.
- The vaginal capsule will dissolve overnight in the moisture in your vagina. You may notice some leakage as it melts.
- Miconazole can damage the latex in condoms and diaphragms so do not rely on these forms of contraception. Use an alternative method of contraception (or do not have sex) while you are using miconazole. Please also keep in mind that having vaginal sex while you have thrush could infect your partner.
- If your symptoms do not improve within a week of using miconazole, contact your doctor for further advice. An alternative treatment could be more suitable for you.
Can miconazole cause problems?
Miconazole is unlikely to cause any serious side-effects, although it can cause mild irritation and itching in some women. If you experience any other symptoms, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for further advice.
How to store miconazole
- Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
- Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
Important information about all medicines
If you buy any medicines, always check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with your other medicines.
If you are having an operation or dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are taking.
If you suspect that someone has swallowed some of this medicine, 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 Gyno-Daktarin® 1200 mg vaginal capsule; Janssen-Cilag Ltd., The electronic medicines Compendium. Dated February 2014.
- Manufacturer's PIL, Gyno-Daktarin® 20 mg/g cream; Janssen-Cilag Ltd., The electronic medicines Compendium. Dated February 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.
Dr Adrian Bonsall