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Ingenol Mebutate Topical

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Why is this medication prescribed?

Ingenol mebutate topical is a medication used to treat certain skin conditions, specifically actinic keratosis (AK). Actinic keratosis is a precancerous condition characterized by rough, scaly patches on the skin caused by excessive sun exposure over time.

Ingenol mebutate is derived from a plant called Euphorbia peplus, also known as petty spurge. It works by causing cell death in the affected skin cells. When applied topically, ingenol mebutate activates a process called apoptosis, which leads to the destruction of the abnormal cells.

The main goal of prescribing ingenol mebutate topical is to remove or reduce the number of actinic keratosis lesions on the skin, reducing the risk of their progression to skin cancer. It is typically recommended for use on the face and scalp, but it can also be used on other areas of the body.

How should this medicine be used?

Ingenol mebutate topical comes in the form of a gel or a topical solution. The exact instructions for use may vary depending on the specific product and the recommendations of your healthcare provider. It is crucial to follow the instructions provided by your doctor or the product’s labeling. However, here are some general guidelines:

  • Preparation: Wash your hands and the area of skin to be treated with mild soap and water. Ensure that the skin is clean and dry before applying the medication.
  • Application: Apply a thin layer of the gel or solution to the affected area(s) once daily, as instructed by your healthcare provider. Gently rub the medication into the skin until it is fully absorbed. Be careful to avoid contact with your eyes, mouth, and mucous membranes.
  • Treatment Duration: The recommended treatment duration can vary depending on the location and severity of the actinic keratosis lesions. Common treatment durations range from 2 to 3 consecutive days for face and scalp applications, and up to 6 to 8 consecutive days for other body areas. Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions regarding the duration of treatment.
  • Avoid Washing or Touching: After applying the medication, avoid washing the treated area or touching it for a specific period of time as directed by your healthcare provider. This allows the medication to be absorbed and work effectively.
  • Follow-up: After completing the treatment, follow up with your healthcare provider for a reevaluation of the treated area. They will assess the response to treatment and determine if any further action is necessary.

Remember, these are general instructions, and it’s important to consult your healthcare provider or carefully read the product’s instructions for specific dosing and application guidelines for the ingenol mebutate topical product prescribed to you.

Other uses for this medicine

Ingenol Mebutate Topical is primarily used as a prescription medication for the treatment of actinic keratosis, a precancerous skin condition caused by excessive sun exposure. However, there are no other approved uses for Ingenol Mebutate Topical.

What special precautions should I follow?

When using Ingenol Mebutate Topical, it’s important to take certain precautions. Here are some special precautions to consider:

  • Application Site: Ingenol Mebutate is meant for topical use on the skin only. Avoid applying it to the eyes, mouth, nostrils, or other mucous membranes. If accidental contact occurs, rinse thoroughly with water.
  • Allergic Reactions: Some individuals may experience allergic reactions to Ingenol Mebutate Topical. If you have a known hypersensitivity to the medication or any of its components, you should not use it.
  • Open Wounds: Do not apply Ingenol Mebutate Topical on open wounds, broken skin, or severely inflamed areas.
  • Interactions: Inform your healthcare provider about all the medications, including over-the-counter products and herbal supplements, that you are currently taking. There may be potential interactions with other medications, although specific interactions for Ingenol Mebutate Topical are limited.
  • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: The safety of Ingenol Mebutate Topical during pregnancy or breastfeeding has not been established. Consult with your healthcare provider before using this medication if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or nursing.

Always follow the instructions provided by your healthcare provider and read the medication’s accompanying leaflet for comprehensive information on precautions, side effects, and usage guidelines specific to Ingenol Mebutate Topical.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

Ingenol Mebutate is a topical medication used for the treatment of actinic keratosis, a precancerous skin condition. It is not typically associated with specific dietary restrictions. However, it’s always best to consult with your healthcare provider or pharmacist regarding any specific instructions or precautions related to your individual circumstances.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If you forget to apply a dose of Ingenol Mebutate, you should apply it as soon as you remember. However, if it is close to the time for your next scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. It is important not to apply extra doses to make up for the missed one.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Like any medication, it can cause side effects. Common side effects associated with the use of ingenol mebutate topical include:

  • Local skin reactions: This is the most common side effect and typically includes redness, swelling, crusting, flaking, and peeling of the skin in the treated area. These reactions are usually mild to moderate in severity and resolve within a few weeks.
  • Itching or burning sensation: Some individuals may experience itching or a burning sensation at the application site. This is usually temporary and improves over time.
  • Pain or discomfort: Mild to moderate pain or discomfort at the treated area is possible. This can include sensations of stinging or tenderness. It is generally temporary and should subside as the skin heals.
  • Skin color changes: In some cases, the treated area may experience hypopigmentation (lightening of the skin) or hyperpigmentation (darkening of the skin). These changes are usually temporary and gradually fade over time.
  • Blisters: While uncommon, blisters may occur at the application site. These are typically small and heal without intervention.

It’s important to note that individual experiences with medication can vary, and not everyone will experience these side effects. If you have any concerns or experience severe or persistent side effects, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider for further evaluation and guidance.

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?


  • Keep ingenol mebutate in its original container or packaging, tightly closed, and out of reach of children and pets.
  • Store it at room temperature, away from direct sunlight and moisture, unless otherwise specified by the manufacturer.


  • Do not dispose of ingenol mebutate in household trash or flush it down the toilet unless instructed to do so.
  • Contact your local waste management or recycling center for specific instructions on the proper disposal of unused or expired medications.
  • If you are unsure about the correct disposal method, consult your pharmacist or healthcare provider for guidance.

In case of emergency/overdose

In case of emergency or overdose, it is important to take appropriate action:

  • If someone accidentally ingests ingenol mebutate or applies too much of the medication, immediately call your local emergency helpline or go to the nearest emergency room.
  • If possible, provide the healthcare professionals with information such as the strength and amount of ingenol mebutate ingested or applied.
  • Do not induce vomiting unless instructed to do so by medical professionals.

What other information should I know?

  • Follow the instructions provided by your healthcare provider and the medication’s packaging for the appropriate dosage, duration, and application technique.
  • Do not use ingenol mebutate for any condition other than the one prescribed or recommended by your healthcare provider.
  • Inform your healthcare provider about any allergies or sensitivities you have before using ingenol mebutate.
  • It is important to avoid contact with the eyes, mouth, and other mucous membranes when applying ingenol mebutate. If accidental contact occurs, rinse thoroughly with water.
  • Report any severe or prolonged side effects, such as severe skin irritation, blistering, or persistent pain, to your healthcare provider.
  • If you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding, consult your healthcare provider before using ingenol mebutate, as its safety during these periods may not be fully established.

Remember, the information provided here is a general overview, and it is crucial to consult your healthcare provider or pharmacist for specific instructions and advice regarding the use, storage, disposal, and potential emergencies related to ingenol mebutate topical.

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