Silver sulfadiazine cream for skin infections (Flamazine)

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Tell your doctor before using the cream if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a sulfonamide antibiotic.

Once opened, the pack has an expiry date of seven days to reduce the risk of infection. Do not use it after this time.

Type of medicineAn anti-infective skin cream
Used forTo prevent skin infections from burns; to treat infected leg ulcers or pressure sores
Also calledFlamazine®
Available asCream

You will have been prescribed silver sulfadiazine cream to prevent, or to treat, a bacterial skin infection. It is particularly helpful in preventing burn wounds and small skin grafts from becoming infected. It is also prescribed to help treat infected leg ulcers and pressure sores. It works by killing the germs (bacteria) responsible for skin infections.

To make sure this is the right treatment for you, before you start using silver sulfadiazine it is important that your doctor knows:

  • If you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a medicine. It is particularly important that you tell your doctor if you have had a bad reaction to a sulfonamide medicine in the past. Sulfonamides are mainly used to treat infections.
  • If you have any problems with the way your liver works, or with the way your kidneys work.
  • If you have glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency. This is a genetic disorder where there is a lack of an enzyme often known as G6PD. People with this disorder have problems after eating foods such as fava beans.
  • If you are using any other preparations, including those available to buy without a prescription, herbal and complementary medicines.
  • Before you start using the preparation, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from inside the pack. It will give you more information about the cream and will provide you with a full list of the side-effects that you may experience from using it.
  • Depending upon the reason you are using the cream, you may be directed to use it each day or several times a week. Your doctor will tell you how often is right for you, and this information will be on the label of the pack to remind you.
  • It is likely you will be asked to apply the cream while wearing a sterile glove or by using a sterile applicator. Doing this will further reduce the risk of infection.

Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. The table below contains some of the ones associated with silver sulfadiazine. You will find a full list in the manufacturer's information leaflet supplied with your medicine. The unwanted effects may improve as your body adjusts to the new medicine, but speak with your doctor or pharmacist if any of the following continue or become troublesome.

Silver sulfadiazine side-effectsWhat can I do if I experience this?
Itching, or a burning sensationSpeak with your doctor if this continues
Skin rashSpeak with your doctor about this as soon as possible
Changes to some blood test results; skin discolourationYour doctor will check for these if you are using the cream on large areas of your body, or over a prolonged time. However, if at any time during your treatment you begin to feel generally unwell, you should speak with your doctor for advice
  • Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
  • To reduce the risk of infection, Flamazine® should not be used if the pack has been open for more than seven days.

Make sure that the person supplying this medicine knows about any other medicines that you are taking or using. This includes medicines you buy and herbal and homeopathic medicines.

Never use more than the prescribed amount. If you suspect that someone has swallowed some of the medicine by accident, contact the accident and emergency department of your local hospital for advice.

If you are having an operation or dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are taking or using.

If you buy any medicines check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with your other medicines.

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

  • 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 Adrian Bonsall
Document ID:
3737 (v24)
Last Checked:
24/02/2015
Next Review:
23/02/2018
The Information Standard - certified member

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