Clotrimazole (Canesten AF spray)

How does it work?

Canesten AF spray contains the active ingredient clotrimazole, which is an antifungal medicine used to treat infections with fungi and yeasts.

Clotrimazole kills fungi and yeasts by interfering with their cell membranes. It works by stopping the fungi from producing a substance called ergosterol, which is an essential component of fungal cell membranes. The disruption in production of ergosterol causes holes to appear in the fungal cell membrane.

The cell membranes of fungi are vital for their survival. They keep unwanted substances from entering the cells and stop the contents of the cells from leaking out. As clotrimazole causes holes to appear in the cell membranes, essential constituents of the fungal cells can leak out. This kills the fungi and treats the infection.

Canesten AF spray is licensed to treat the fungal skin infection athlete's foot (tinea pedis). The spray should be applied to the affected area(s) of skin thinly two to three times daily. You should make sure you wash and dry the feet, especially between the toes, before applying the spray. Treatment should be continued for at least one month to make sure the infection is fully treated.

You may also want to use Canesten AF powder inside your socks and shoes to help treat the infection and prevent it coming back.

What is it used for?

  • Athlete's foot (tinea pedis).

Warning!

  • Consult your doctor or pharmacist before using this medicine if you are unsure of the cause of your infection, or you have not had it before.
  • Canesten AF spray is for external use on the skin only. You should not use it to treat fungal infections affecting the nails or scalp. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice on treating infections in these areas.
  • The spray should not be used near a naked flame. It should not be allowed to come into contact with the eyes, ears or mucous membranes (eg inside of the mouth or nose) and should not be inhaled.
  • If your symptoms have not started to improve after seven days of treatment you should seek medical advice from your doctor or pharmacist.

Not to be used in

  • Known sensitivity or allergy to any ingredient.

This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to one or 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 when used during pregnancy has not been specifically studied. However, it has been used by a large number of women during pregnancy without any apparant harmful effects. As with all medicines, you should consult your doctor or midwife before using this medicine during pregnancy.
  • This medicine is not significantly absorbed into the bloodstream from the skin and it is highly unlikely that any of the medicine will pass into breast milk. However, as with all medicines, you should seek medical advice from your doctor or pharmacist before using this medicine if you are breastfeeding.

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 does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.

  • Irritation in area of use.
  • Burning sensation.

The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the drug'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?

This medicine is not known to affect other medicines.

Other medicines containing the same active ingredient

For treating athlete's foot:

Canesten AF cream Canesten AF powder

For treating fungal skin infections (these can only be bought from pharmacies):

Canesten 1% cream Canesten dermatological powderCanesten dermatological spray
Canesten solutionCare clotrimazole cream 1%

For treating vaginal thrush (these can only be prescribed by a doctor or bought from pharmacies):

Canesten 10% VC Canesten 100mg/200mg pessaries Canesten 500mg pessary
Canesten combi pessary and cream Canesten cream combi internal and external creams Canesten internal cream
Canesten thrush cream