Ultralanum plain cream/ointment (Fluocortolone)
How does it work?
Ultralanum plain cream and ointment both contain the active ingredient flucortolone, which is a type of medicine known as a topical corticosteroid.
Corticosteroids are medicines used for reducing inflammation. Inflammation of the skin happens as a result of allergy or irritation of the skin, and is caused by the release of various substances that are important in the immune system. These substances cause blood vessels to widen and result in the irritated area becoming red, swollen, itchy and painful, such as is seen in dermatitis or eczema.
When flucortolone is applied to the skin it works by acting inside the skin cells to decrease the release of these inflammatory substances. This reduces swelling, redness and itch.
There is a range of potencies of corticosteroids applied to the skin. Fluocortolone is classed as a moderately potent corticosteroid. It is prescribed to treat various forms of eczema and dermatitis.
Fluocortolone is available as a cream or an ointment. The cream may be more suitable for moist, weeping or hairy areas of skin, while the thicker, more greasier ointment may be more suitable for dry, scaly areas of skin.
What is it used for?
- Chronic plaque psoriasis affecting the hands and feet.
- Skin disorder called lichen planus, in which there are patches on the skin that appear as flat-topped, shiny, almost violet itchy areas.
- Skin disorder called discoid lupus erythematosus, which is caused by the immune system attacking the skin.
- An eruption of hard nodules in the skin accompanied by intense itching (prurigo nodularis).
- Reactions to insect bites and stings.
- Inflammation of the skin (dermatitis).
- Severe, widespread reddening of the skin (erythroderma).
- Inflammatory skin condition with greasy, red and scaly areas (seborrhoeic dermatitis).
- Thickened skin rash caused by excessive scratching to relieve itching (neurodermatitis).
- If corticosteroids are used long-term, on large areas of skin, raw skin, skin folds, or under airtight dressings (including nappies) they are absorbed into the body more. This increases the risk of local side effects such as skin thinning, and those on other parts of the body, such as a decrease in the production of natural hormones by the adrenal glands. For this reason, continuous, long-term use of this medicine should be avoided wherever possible, particularly in children and on large areas of skin. You should only use airtight dressings over the affected area if instructed by your doctor.
- This preparation is for external use only.
- If you have been prescribed this medicine to treat psoriasis you should have regular check-ups with your doctor. This is because although corticosteroids may be useful for psoriasis in the short-term, they can sometimes make psoriasis worse, and may cause the condition to relapse into generalised pustular psoriasis after the treatment is stopped.
- This medicine should be applied thinly and evenly to the affected area(s).
- This medicine should not be used for longer than five days on the face or in children.
- If this medicine is to be used on the face or in children, you should not use airtight dressings (including nappies) to cover the area treated, as this may increase the absorption of the medicine into the body, increasing the risk of adverse effects.
- Wash your hands thoroughly after applying this medicine, unless the hands are the area being treated.
- Consult your doctor if your skin becomes infected during treatment, as you may need to stop using this medicine and start treatment with antibiotics.
- Avoid contact of this medicine with the eyes and the moist membranes lining the inside of certain parts of the body, eg mouth, nasal passages (mucous membranes).
- This medicine contains methyl parahydroxybenzoate (E218) and propyl parahydroxybenzoate (E216), which may also cause allergic reactions (possibly delayed).
Not to be used in
- Chronic inflammatory disorder of the facial skin (acne rosacea).
- Children less than one year of age.
- Viral skin infections, such as chickenpox, shingles, cold sores or herpes simplex.
- Bacterial skin infections, such as impetigo.
- Fungal skin infections such as thrush, ringworm, athlete's foot.
- Inflammatory rash around the mouth (perioral dermatitis).
- Itching around the back passage and genitals.
- Nappy rash.
- Skin sores caused by syphilis.
- Skin sores caused by tuberculosis.
- Widespread plaque psoriasis.
- Ulcerated or weeping areas of skin.
This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to any of its ingredients.
Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy. If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.
- This medicine should not be used during pregnancy unless considered essential by your doctor. If it is prescribed by your doctor it should not be used on large areas of skin, underneath airtight dressings, or for prolonged periods of time. Consult your doctor for further information
- This medicine should not be used during breastfeeding unless considered essential by your doctor. If it is prescribed by your doctor it should not be used on large areas of skin, underneath airtight dressings or for prolonged periods of time. If it is applied to the breasts it should be washed off carefully before breastfeeding and then reapplied afterwards.
- This medication is to be spread thinly and sparingly on the skin.
Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. Just because a side effect is stated here, it does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect. The following side effects are known to be associated with this medicine.
- Skin irritation at site of application, such as burning, itching and redness.
- Allergic inflammation of the skin (contact dermatitis).
- Thinning of the skin.
- Changes in skin pigmentation.
- Stretch marks (striae).
- Groupings of fine blood vessels becoming prominent under the skin (telangiectasia).
This list may not include all of the side effects reported by the medicine's manufacturer.
For more information about any other possible risks associated with this medicine, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.
How can this medicine affect other medicines?
There are no significant interactions reported with this medicine.
Other medicines containing the same active ingredients
There are currently no other medicines available in the UK that contain flucortolone as the only active ingredient.