What Are the Best Medications for Impetigo?

What are the best medications for impetigo?

Impetigo is a bacterial skin condition that is primarily treated with antibiotics.

There are two general types of antibiotics used for impetigo treatment: topical antibiotics (applied to the skin) and oral antibiotics (taken by mouth).

Topical antibiotics include:

  • Mupirocin
  • Altabax (Retapamulin)
  • Ozenoxacin (Xepi)

Advantages and disadvantages of topical antibiotics for impetigo

Advantages
  • Easy to apply
  • Reduced risk of severe side effects
  • More active ingredient
  • More affordable
Disadvantages
  • Bacterial resistance
  • Disruption of cutaneous flora
  • Possibility of allergic reactions

Oral antibiotics for impetigo include:

  • Amoxicillin
  • Clindamycin
  • Cephalexin (Keflex)
  • Dicloxacillin

Advantages and disadvantages of oral impetigo medicine

Advantages
  • More effective on serious infections;
  • Better suited to treat impetigo caused by MRSA and other strains of resistant bacteria;
  • The application is not as laborious as of topical medications;
  • Do not interfere with cutaneous flora.
Disadvantages
  • More likely to cause more severe side effects such as nausea and vomiting. This is due to potential alteration of intestinal flora.
  • Require higher dosages for maximum effects.
  • More expensive.

Mostly, topical medications are considered as first lines of defense against impetigo while oral antibiotics are usually reserved for serious infections. Always check with your doctor before using oral medications.

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* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.