Skin Cancer Ointment Treatment
Skin Cancer Ointment Treatment A common treatment for basal cell carcinoma, the most common type of skin cancer in the world, is a topical (applied to the skin only) cream, such as Efudex (fluorouracil). If your doctor has prescribed Efudex, this introduction will help you with the information you need to use it in an effective and safe way.
Keep in mind that this information may not cover all possible precautions, interactions, or adverse effects for this treatment. If you have any questions about any medications you are taking, be sure to check with your health care professional.
Skin Cancer Ointment Treatment Overview
Efudex (other brands include Carac and Fluoroplex) is a topical cream used for the treatment of superficial basal cell carcinoma when conventional methods are impractical, such as in the case of multiple injuries or difficult sites. of treatment on the face or scalp. It is also used to treat Actinic keratosis (also called Solar keratosis), which may lead to more serious invasive squamous cell carcinoma if left untreated.
Efudex is a chemotherapeutic treatment (an “Antimetabolite “) that interferes with the formation of DNA and RNA, which are essential for cell division and growth. This inhibition results in the death of rapidly growing cancer cells, which absorb more fluorouracil than healthy cells. In its most potent injectable form, fluorouracil is also used to treat cancers of the chest, stomach, intestine, and esophagus.
Read more: Symptoms and Effects of Skin Cancer
Skin Cancer Ointment Treatment Efficiency
The success rate of treatment of basal cell carcinoma with fluorouracil was approximately 93%, based on the study of 113 lesions in 54 patients. However, isolated, easily accessible basal cell carcinomas should be treated with surgical treatment, as the success achieved with such lesions is about 100 percent. Unlike surgery, Efudex does not permanently leave colorless scars or skin blemishes.
Other studies are now looking at how effective Efudex cream is in the non-facial regions of the body, and how fluorouracil is compared with imiquimod (Aldara) cream and cryosurgery. For example, in a German study of patients with Actinic keratosis, Imiquimod treatment resulted in best clearness of the lesions and better cosmetic results compared with cryosurgery and fluorouracil. Talk to your doctor about which treatment is best for you.
For basal cell carcinoma, it is recommended to apply a 5-percent-fluorouracil cream twice daily in a sufficient amount to cover the lesions for at least 3 to 6 weeks. However, therapy may be required for a period of 10 to 12 weeks before the lesions disappear. To apply for this medication, use a cotton-tipped applicator, or wear gloves if applied with fingertips. If applied with unprotected fingertips, it is important to wash your hands well after you apply for this medication. Avoid applying to eyes, nose, or mouth.
Read more: Skin Cancer Types Squamous
In general, treated areas may be unsightly during therapy, and usually for several weeks after cessation of therapy. The effect of fluorouracil occurs in four phases:
- Early inflammatory phase: mild inflammation occurs during the first week of application.
- Inflammatory phase: During the following weeks, redness and swelling occur with some scabs and burns.
- Tumor disintegration phase: The lesions are resolved as the skin is exfoliated.
- Curative phase: over 1 to 2 weeks, the new skin grows in the treatment area.
Specific side effects that usually do not require medical attention (tell your doctor or health care provider if they continue or are annoying) include:
- Red or dark skin
- Erosion (loss of the upper skin layer)
- Eye irritation including burning, itching, tenderness, itching, or watering
- Increased skin sensitivity to sun and ultraviolet light
- Pain and burning of the affected area
- dryness, scaling or swelling of the affected area
- Rash, itching in the affected area
The most serious side effects you should report to your doctor or healthcare professional as soon as possible include:
- Abdominal pain
- Bloody diarrhea
Precautions and interactions
Efudex cream should not be used by women who are pregnant, considering becoming pregnant, or breastfeeding since it can harm the fetus. It should also not be used if you have an enzyme deficiency of dihydropyridine dehydrogenase (DPD), as serious side effects may occur. DPD is a hereditary condition that requires 3 to 5 percent of the population, and a specific genetic test for diagnosis. Also tell your doctor:
- Are in radiation therapy
- Have had an unusual or allergic reaction to fluorouracil, other chemotherapy, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
Skin Cancer Ointment Treatment
Avoid sunlight as much as possible while using Efudex, as it may increase your side effects. If exposed to sunlight, wear a hat and wear sunscreen. As always, also avoid tanning booths, which have been clearly related to squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma.