Canesten is a cream which treats and soothes the symptoms of thrush which is a vaginal yeast infection. It’s used externally around the vulva to ease the itching and inflammation that is caused by thrush. It should be used in combination with a Canesten pessary treatment to treat the internal source of the infection inside the vagina.
Canesten contains clotrimazole which is an antifungal medicine. It penetrates the Candida fungus which causes thrush to kill the fungi. To treat vagainal thrush, you’ll need to use Canesten cream alongside a pessary or oral tablet to fully treat the infection.
Thrush usually clears up after one week of beginning treatment.
The active ingredient in Canesten cream is clotrimazole.
The inactive ingredients in Canesten cream are: benzyl alcohol, polysorbate 60, sorbitan stearate, cetyl palmitate, cetostearyl alcohol, octyldodecanol and purified water.
The inactive ingredients in a Canesten pessary are: lactose monohydrate, microcrystalline cellulose, lactic acid, maize starch, crospovidone, calcium lactate pentahydrate, magnesium stearate, colloidal anhydrous silica and hypromellose.
For treating vaginal thrush, Canesten cream needs to be used in combination with a vaginal pessary or oral tablet. This treats the internal symptoms to clear up the infection, while the cream treats the external discomfort produced by the infection. After using the one off pessary, continue to apply the cream to the vulva 2-3 times a day for the next week, or until your symptoms disappear. The cream should not be used inside the vagina. Always wash your hands before and after application.
Use a thin layer of the cream 2-3 times a day on the irritated areas of the skin. Use the applicator to insert the pessary as high as possible in the vagina. It is recommended that you do this, just before you go to sleep at night.
Canesten cream should be applied to the affected area 2-3 times a day. You should continue to use it until your symptoms have cleared up. Some women experience recurring thrush so you may need to continue your treatment if your symptoms return.
Side effects are uncommon with Canesten cream but you may experience itching and burning or a rash, peeling and redness. Side effects of Canesten pessaries include: itching and burning or a rash, peeling and redness, pain in the pelvic or abdominal regions, vaginal bleeding.
Canesten shouldn’t be used if you are allergic or sensitive to any of the ingredients. If you have additional symptoms like vaginal bleeding, a dark coloured or smelly discharge, burning during urination or pain in the genitals then this could be signs of a sexually transmitted infection. You should see a doctor or visit a sexual health clinic for a check up so that you can get treated for any additional infections.
Canesten should not be affected by any other medication. However, if you are taking any other treatments/medications you should inform the prescribing physician.
Canesten will not have an effect on your fertility.
You can drink alcohol for the duration of your canesten treatment.
Canesten is used safely by many women during pregnancy. It’s advisable to inform your doctor or midwife first before you begin the treatment to ensure it’s safe for you.
For women, Canesten products usually come as a duo. It will include the cream with either a soft gel pessary or a traditional pessary in tablet form. The pessary treatment is inserted into the vagina and this is used in combination with the cream to treat both the internal and external symptoms of thrush. Both these treatments have the same results but the gel pessary may feel more comfortable to insert. The cream won’t treat vaginal thrush on its own as it soothes only the external itching and irritation around the vulva.
Canesten can be used to treat male or female thrush, athlete's foot, ringworm and fungal nappy rash.
Canesten is not an antibiotic, it’s an antifungal medicine.
Canesten won’t affect hormonal contraception but it can damage the latex in condoms or diaphragms leaving you at risk of pregnancy or STIs. Sex should be avoided during treatment until your symptoms clear up.
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