Canesten is a cream containing clotrimazole. It is used to relieve symptoms and treat infection by the candida fungus. Canesten is applied externally to the affected areas - in men, this is usually around the penis.
Canesten works in two ways - relieving the symptoms of thrush and treating the underlying infection. Canesten contains clotrimazole, an antifungal agent that kills the candida fungus. As the fungus is being attacked, the symptoms should start to improve.
Canesten takes approximately one week to resolve your symptoms after starting treatment. If this does not happen, you should speak to a doctor who may be able to offer you an alternative such as Miconzaole.
The active ingredient in Canesten cream is clotrimazole.
The inactive ingredients are: benzyl alcohol, polysorbate 60, sorbitan stearate, cetyl palmitate, cetostearyl alcohol, octyldodecanol and purified water.
Apply the cream 2-3 times a day for up to two weeks. Always wash your hands after applying Canesten. If symptoms persist after two weeks, speak to your doctor, who may recommend an alternative treatment.
Apply a thin layer of Canesten cream to the affected areas of skin. Repeat this 2-3 times a day until symptoms resolve.
You do not need to continue if your thrush symptoms have cleared up, generally this should happen within two weeks. If your symptoms are still present after two weeks then you should see your GP for advice.
Side effects are uncommon with Canesten cream but you may experience itching and burning or a rash, peeling and redness.
Canesten shouldn’t be used if you are allergic or sensitive to any of the ingredients. If you have additional symptoms such as penile discharge, burning during urination or pain in the genitals then this could be signs of a sexually transmitted infection. You should take an STI test and visit a doctor or sexual health clinic to get treated for any additional infections.
Canesten cream should not be affected by any other medication. However, if you are taking any other treatments/medications you should inform the prescribing doctor.
You can drink alcohol for the duration of your canesten treatment.
Aside from thrush in men, Canesten can also be used to treat female thrush, athlete's foot, ringworm and fungal nappy rash. For female thrush, Canesten cream is often used in conjunction with a pessary.
Canesten can damage condoms or contraceptive diaphragms, this can weaken these materials, increasing the chance of them failing. It is advised that you avoid sex whilst you have thrush. Canesten does not affect hormonal contraceptives.
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