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Drug Profile

The information on this site is intended to supplement and enhance, not replace, the advice of a physician who is familiar with your medical history. Decisions about your health should always be made ONLY after detailed conversation with your doctor.

Limited Use [what does this mean?]
Generic drug name: mupirocin (mu PIR o sin)
Brand name(s): BACTROBAN OINTMENT
GENERIC: available FAMILY: Other Drugs for Bacterial Infection
Find the drug label by searching at DailyMed.

Pregnancy and Breast-feeding Warnings [top]

Pregnancy Warning

There was no evidence of toxicity in animal studies. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant before you take this drug.

Breast-feeding Warning

No information is available from either human or animal studies. Since it is likely that this drug, like many others, is excreted in human milk, you should consult with your doctor if you are planning to nurse.

Facts About This Drug [top]

Mupirocin is approved by the FDA to treat Staph and Strep skin infections.[1] A review concluded that penicillin or erythromycin should be used to treat nonbullous to (simple) impetigo,[2] and some doctors prefer to use oral antibiotics to treat it. Impetigo is an acute contagious staphylococcal or streptococcal skin disease characterized by blisters, pustules, and yellowish crusts. If the impetigo affects only a small skin area and you prefer not to take oral therapy, consider mupirocin.

Res...

Mupirocin is approved by the FDA to treat Staph and Strep skin infections.[1] A review concluded that penicillin or erythromycin should be used to treat nonbullous to (simple) impetigo,[2] and some doctors prefer to use oral antibiotics to treat it. Impetigo is an acute contagious staphylococcal or streptococcal skin disease characterized by blisters, pustules, and yellowish crusts. If the impetigo affects only a small skin area and you prefer not to take oral therapy, consider mupirocin.

Resistance and secondary infection with mupirocin can occur with prolonged use.[3],[4] Mupirocin is for external use, so do not use if you have extensive broken skin or burns, since you could absorb the drug internally and cause kidney problems.[5]

Before You Use This Drug [top]

Tell your doctor if you have or have had:

  • allergies to drugs or polyethylene glycol (PEG)

When You Use This Drug [top]

  • Call your doctor if no improvement occurs within three to five days.
  • Use all the mupirocin your doctor prescribed, even if you feel better before you run out. If you stop too soon, your symptoms could come back.

How to Use This Drug [top]

  • Wash the affected area with soap and water, then dry.
  • Rub a small amount gently onto the skin. To avoid rubbing ointment off the skin and to protect your clothing, you may cover the site with a gauze dressing.
  • If you miss a dose, apply it as soon as you remember, but skip it if it is almost time for the next application. Do not apply double doses.
  • Do not use in the eyes.
  • Recap the tube. Store at room temperature. Keep out of reach of children.

Interactions with Other Drugs [top]

Evaluations of Drug Interactions 2003 lists no drugs, biologics (e.g., vaccines, therapeutic antibodies), or foods as causing “highly clinically significant” or “clinically significant” interactions when used together with the drugs in this section. We also found no interactions in the drugs’ FDA-approved professional package inserts. However, as the number of new drugs approved for marketing increases and as more experience is gained with these drugs over time, new interactions may be discovered.

When using topical products it is advisable not to apply other topical preparations, including cosmetics, to the same site. This prevents interactions that could irritate your skin.

Adverse Effects [top]

Call your doctor if these symptoms continue:

  • dry skin
  • nausea
  • skin rash, swelling, burning, itching, or pain
  • abdominal pain
  • dizziness
  • sores in mouth or on lips

last reviewed April 30, 2021