Clindamycin (Dalacin cream)

How does it work?

Dalacin cream contains the active ingredient clindamycin phosphate, which is a type of medicine called an antibiotic. It is used to treat infections with bacteria.

Clindamycin works by preventing bacteria from producing proteins that are essential to them. Without these proteins the bacteria cannot grow, replicate and increase in numbers. The remaining bacteria eventually die or are destroyed by the immune system. This treats the infection.

Dalacin cream is inserted into the vagina using an applicator to treat an infection called bacterial vaginosis.

What is it used for?

  • A bacterial infection of the vagina called bacterial vaginosis.

How do I use it?

  • One applicator full of cream should be inserted into the vagina once a day at bedtime. Follow the instructions provided in the pack for how to use the applicator.
  • A course of treatment may be three or seven days. Follow the instructions given by your doctor for how long to use this medicine. These should also be printed on the dispensing label that your pharmacist has put on the packet of medicine. If you are unsure, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
  • Unless otherwise directed by your doctor, make sure you complete the prescribed course of treatment with this medicine, even if your symptoms appear to have cleared up. Stopping treatment early may result in the infection not being fully treated and thus coming back.


  • This medicine is for use in the vagina only. It must not be taken by mouth.
  • This medicine may damage latex (rubber) condoms and diaphragms and so make them ineffective at preventing pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). You should use an alternative method of contraception while you are using this cream and for at least five days after the course of treatment is finished, or preferably avoid having sex until after the infection has cleared up.
  • When clindamycin is taken by mouth it can sometimes cause inflammation of the bowel (colitis). Although this is very unlikely to occur when you use the antibiotic in the vagina, if you get diarrhoea either during or after using this medicine, particularly if it becomes severe or persistent, or contains blood or mucus, you should stop using this medicine and consult your doctor immediately.

Use with caution in

  • People with a history of inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis.
  • People with a history of inflammation of the large intestine or diarrhoea due to antibiotic treatment (antibiotic-associated colitis).

Not to be used in

  • People who are allergic to the related antibiotic lincomycin.
  • Children under 12 years of age.

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.

  • The safety of this medicine for use during pregnancy has not been fully established, although it is not expected to be harmful. It should be used with caution during pregnancy and only if the expected benefits outweigh any potential risks to the developing baby. Seek further medical advice from your doctor. Take extra care using the applicator to insert the cream if you do use this medicine while pregnant.
  • It is not known if this medicine passes into breast milk after application to the vagina. Clindamycin does pass into breast milk when taken by mouth. For this reason this medicine should be used with caution during breastfeeding and only if the benefits to the mother outweigh any possible risk to the nursing infant. If you do use this medicine while breastfeeding you should consult your doctor if the child develops diarrhoea.

Side effects

Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with this medicine. 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.

Very common (affect more than 1 in 10 people)

  • Inflammation or irritation of the vagina or cervix.

Uncommon (affect between 1 in 100 and 1 in 1000 people)

  • Dizziness or spinning sensation.
  • Headache.
  • Disturbances of the gut, such as nausea, vomiting, heartburn, abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhoea (see warning section above regarding diarrhoea).
  • Rashes.

The side effects listed above 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?

It is important to tell your doctor or pharmacist what medicines you are already taking, including those bought without a prescription and herbal medicines, before you start treatment with this medicine. Similarly, check with your doctor or pharmacist before taking any new medicines while using this one, to make sure that the combination is safe.

When this medicine is inserted into the vagina it is absorbed into the bloodstream in lower amounts than clindamycin taken by mouth and so is unlikely to affect other medicines that you are taking.

The use of clindamycin in combination with other vaginal preparations is not recommended.

Other medicines containing the same active ingredient

  • Dalacin C capsules.
  • Dalacin C phosphate injection.
  • Dalacin T topical solution and lotion.
  • Zindaclin gel.