IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
BETAMETHASONE VALERATE – TOPICAL
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Beta-Val
USES: This medication is used to treat a variety of skin conditions (e.g., eczema, dermatitis, allergies, rash). Betamethasone reduces the swelling, itching, and redness that can occur in these types of conditions. This medication is a medium-strength corticosteroid.
HOW TO USE: Use this medication on the skin only. However, do not use it on the face, groin, or underarms unless directed to do so by your doctor.
Wash and dry your hands before using. Clean and dry the affected area. Apply a thin film of medication to the affected area and gently rub in, usually 1-3 times daily or as directed by your doctor. Do not bandage, cover, or wrap the area unless directed to do so by your doctor. If used in the diaper area on an infant, do not use tight-fitting diapers or plastic pants.
After applying the medication, wash your hands unless you are using this medication to treat the hands. When applying this medication near the eyes, avoid getting it in the eyes because this may worsen or cause glaucoma. Also, avoid getting this medication in the nose or mouth. If you get the medication in these areas, rinse with plenty of water.
Use this medication only for the condition for which it was prescribed. Do not use it for longer than prescribed.
Inform your doctor if your condition persists or worsens after 2 weeks.
SIDE EFFECTS: Stinging, burning, itching, irritation, dryness, or redness of the skin may occur when this medication is first applied to the skin. These effects should disappear in a few days as your body adjusts to the medication. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: stretch marks, skin thinning/discoloration, acne, extreme/unwanted hair growth, “hair bumps” (folliculitis).
Skin infections can become worse when this medication is used. Notify your doctor promptly if redness, swelling, or irritation does not improve.
Rarely, it is possible this medication will be absorbed from the skin into the bloodstream. This can lead to side effects of too much corticosteroid. These side effects are more likely in children, and in people who use this medication for a long time or over large areas of the skin. Tell your doctor right away if any of the following side effects occur: unusual/extreme tiredness, weight loss, headache, swelling ankles/feet, increased thirst/urination, vision problems.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US –
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada – Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
PRECAUTIONS: Before using betamethasone, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other corticosteroids (e.g., hydrocortisone, prednisone); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: poor blood circulation, diabetes, immune system problems.
Do not use if there is an infection or sore in the area to be treated.
Rarely, using corticosteroid medications for a long time or over large areas of skin can make it more difficult for your body to respond to physical stress. Therefore, before having surgery or emergency treatment, or if you get a serious illness/injury, tell your doctor or dentist that you are using this medication or have used this medication within the past few months.
Though it is unlikely, this medication may slow down a child’s growth if used for a long time. The effect on final adult height is unknown. See the doctor regularly so your child’s height can be checked.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk when applied to the skin. Similar medications pass into breast milk when taken by mouth. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
DRUG INTERACTIONS: Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription or nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: corticosteroids taken by mouth (e.g., prednisone), drugs that lower the immune system (e.g., cyclosporine).
This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
OVERDOSE: This medication may be harmful if swallowed. If swallowing or overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call the US National Poison Hotline at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
NOTES: Do not share this medication with others.
This medication has been prescribed for your current condition only. Do not use it later for other skin problems unless told to do so by your doctor. A different medication may be necessary in those cases.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as adrenal gland function tests) may be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects, especially if you use this drug for an extended period of time or apply it over large areas of the body. Consult your doctor for more details.
Inform all your doctors that you use or have used this medication.
MISSED DOSE: If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
STORAGE: Store at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
MEDICAL ALERT: Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For information about enrolling in MedicAlert, call 1-800-854-1166 (USA) or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).
Information last revised February 2011. Copyright(c) 2011 First Databank, Inc.