CLINDAMYCIN (KLIN da MYE sin) treats acne. It works by killing or preventing the growth of bacteria on your skin. It belongs to a group of medications called antibiotics.
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
Inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis
Large area of burned or damaged skin
Skin conditions or sensitivity
Stomach or intestine problems like colitis
An unusual or allergic reaction to clindamycin, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
This medication is for external use only. Do not take by mouth. Wash your hands before and after use. If you are treating a hand infection, only wash your hands before use. Do not get it in your eyes. If you do, rinse your eyes with plenty of cool tap water. Use it as directed on the prescription label at the same time every day. Do not use it more often than directed. Use the medication for the full course as directed by your care team, even if you think you are better. Do not stop using it unless your care team tells you to stop it early.
Apply a thin film of the medication to the affected area.
Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medication?
Medicated cosmetics, including coverup preparations
Other acne products including benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or tretinoin
Skin care products that have a high alcohol content (some shaving creams, lotions, or after shave lotion)
Some skin cleansers or medicated soaps
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
Severe diarrhea, fever
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
Mild skin irritation, redness, or dryness
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. It may be some time before you see the benefit from this medication. Tell your care team if your symptoms do not start to get better or if they get worse. Do not treat diarrhea with over the counter products. Contact your care team if you have diarrhea that lasts more than 2 days or if it is severe and watery.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children and pets. Store at room temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F). Do not freeze. Throw away any unused medication after the expiration date.
K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.
This information is educational only and should not be construed as specific instructions for individual patients nor as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Talk to your health care provider or pharmacist about the information and instructions. K Health assumes no liability for any use or reliance on this information.