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Treatments for toenail fungus:

Generic Name: Griseofulvin
Brand Name(s): Fulvicin, Grifulvin, Griseofulicin, Gris-PEG, Grisactin, Griseofulvic
Treatment Form: liquid, tablets or capsules

What is Griseofulvin?

Griseofulvin is an antifungal drug that is sold under the brand names Fulvicin, Grifulvin, Griseofulicin, Gris-PEG, Grisactin and Griseofulvic. Griseofulvin can be used to treat fungal infections in the skin, nails and hair, including toenail fungus.

Dosage and Administration of Griseofulvin

Griseofulvin can be taken as a liquid, tablets or capsules. When taking the liquid suspension, the bottle should be shaken before measuring the dose. A measuring cup or spoon should be used to ensure the correct dosage is taken. Griseofulvin should be stored away from moisture and heat, so it should not be kept in the bathroom.

Griseofulvin should be taken with a full glass of water. In some cases, the doctor may advise that a fatty meal should be consumed at the same time as the dose is taken in order to promote absorption of the medication.

It is essential to complete the whole course of griseofulvin that has been prescribed since the fungal infection may come back if the treatment is stopped early. Even if the visible symptoms of the infection have gone, the fungus may still be present, so the treatment should be continued as recommended by the doctor. Treatment will typically last for six months with a toenail infection.

Side Effects of Griseofulvin

One of the side-effects of griseofulvin is increased sensitivity to sunlight. This can increase the risk of sunburn, so patients who are taking griseofulvin to fight toenail fungus should avoid long periods of exposure to sunlight. Wearing sunscreen and protective clothing while outside is also advisable.

Griseofulvin may stimulate an allergic reaction in some people. Other potential side-effects include nausea, headache, insomnia, dizziness, confusion, tingling or numbness, and irregularities in the menstrual cycle. Treatment of toenail fungus with griseofulvin may also lead to a yeast infection in the mouth, which will usually cause the appearance of white patches.

Patients who have liver disease or porphyria should discuss their condition with their doctor before taking griseofulvin. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should talk to their doctor before taking griseofulvin, since it is still unclear whether griseofulvin may have an adverse effect on unborn children or be able to pass into the breast milk. Griseofulvin may also affect sperm production, so men who take this drug should avoid fathering a baby until at least six months after they have completed treatment.

Warnings and Precautions When Taking Griseofulvin

Adverse interaction with other medications can occur when taking griseofulvin for toenail fungus. Patients should discuss any medications they are taking with their doctor before beginning treatment. Anticoagulants, cyclosporine and salicylates including aspirin can be affected by griseofulvin. The birth control pill will be less effective when taking griseofulvin, so other precautions may need to be taken to prevent pregnancy during treatment.

Alcohol can cause an increased heart rate and flushing when taken with griseofulvin, so caution should be taken when drinking during treatment.