What is the most important information I should know about monobenzone topical?

Monobenzone (Benoquin) is a strong depigmenting agent used to treat vitiligo. Monobenzone (Benoquin) is not used for treating freckles, café-au-lait spots, sun damage, melanoma, jaundice, or other pigmentation disorders not caused by vitiligo.

It can take up to 6 months to complete the depigmentation of treated skin. Keep using the monobenzone cream until the end of the treatment period and if no changes to skin show after 6 months contact your doctor.

Skin treated with monobenzone may cause you to become very sensitive to sunlight and you will need to avoid excessive sun exposure as much as you can. Monobenzone can increase your chances of sunburn even if you currently do not burn easily. Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) when you are outdoors.

Using monobenzone may also cause changes in the color of your untreated skin. Talk with your doctor if you have concerns about possible depigmentation of other skin areas not affected by vitiligo.

What is monobenzone topical?

Monobenzone is a powerful depigmenting agent. It works by increasing elimination of melanin (pigment molecules) from skin cells. Monobenzone topical (for the skin) is used to permanently lighten skin in people with vitiligo. Depigmenting darker skin around the areas of vitiligo helps even out the appearance of the skin.

What should I know before using monobenzone?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to monobenzone. Do not use monobenzone on any areas that are not affected by vitiligo.

Monobenzone is not to be used as a cosmetic bleaching agent.

Do not use monobenzone cream if you are pregnant or breastfeeding as there are no long terms studies on pregnant and lactating women. Do not use this medication on a child younger than 12 years old.

How should I use monobenzone?

Use exactly as directed on the packaging of the monobenzone cream. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Monobenzone is usually applied 2 or 3 times per day. Apply in a thin layer to the pigmented skin areas and rub in gently.

It may take up to 6 months to complete the depigmentation of treated skin. After the first 6 months of treatment, you may need to use monobenzone only twice per week to maintain desired results. Please note that using monobenzone may cause changes in the color of your untreated skin.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What are the possible side effects of monobenzone?

You may notice the following side effects:

  • intense itching;
  • mild burning; or
  • redness or swelling of treated skin.
  • dryness or flaking of treated skin
  • mild skin irritation.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. If side effects are severe, discontinue use and call your doctor for medical advice.

What other drugs will affect monobenzone?

It is not likely that other drugs you take orally or inject will have an effect on topically applied monobenzone. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products.

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