What is silver sulfadiazine used for?
Silver sulfadiazine is part of the class of drugs called sulfonamides. It is an antibacterial and does so by disrupting the integrity and repair of the bacterial cell membrane and cell wall.
Silver sulfadiazine is mainly indicated for treating and preventing bacterial infection in second and third-degree burns. It may also be used for other conditions; ask your doctor for more information.
How should I take silver sulfadiazine?
Wash your hands well before and after you apply silver sulfadiazine. Use a sterile-gloved hand to apply the cream with sufficient thickness on all affected areas. Whenever necessary, reapply the cream to keep the affected areas covered at all times.
Dressings are usually not required with silver sulfadiazine. However, follow your doctor’s instructions if a dressing is needed.
Follow the directions provided by your doctor for bathing or washing the affected area.
To prevent or to clear up your infection completely, continue using this medication for the full course of treatment even if your condition improves in a few days. Do not miss any doses.
How do I store silver sulfadiazine?
This drug should be stored at room temperature (<30°C) and be protected from light. Do not allow this product to freeze. Always check the label before using this product. For safety, keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Do not use if the printed expiration date has passed, the product seal has been broken, or the product has changed in color, odor, or consistency.
Do not dispose of this product by pouring it down the drain, toilet, or into the environment. Ask your pharmacist regarding the proper way and location of disposal.
Precautions & warnings
What should I know before using silver sulfadiazine?
Before using this drug, tell your doctor if:
- You are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
- You are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement.
- You have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances.
- You have allergies to any ingredients of this drug.
These are some important safety information that you may notice:
- This cream is for external use only. Avoid getting the cream in your eyes, nose, or mouth. If you get cream in any of these areas, rinse right away with cool tap water.
- This cream may be harmful if swallowed. If you or someone you know may have taken the cream by mouth, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- This cream is effective only against bacteria. It is not effective for treating viral infections.
- It is important to use this cream for the full course of treatment. Failure to do so may decrease the effectiveness of this medication and increase the risk that the bacteria will no longer be sensitive to this medication and will not be able to be treated by this or certain other antibiotics in the future.
- Long-term or repeated use of this medication may cause a second infection. Your doctor may want to change your medicine to treat the second infection. Contact your doctor if signs of a second infection occur.
- This cream is not recommended for use in children younger than 2 months old; safety and effectiveness in this age group have not been confirmed.
Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?
There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using this medication during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking silver sulfadiazine. Silver sulfadiazine is a pregnancy risk category B drug, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:
- A=No risk
- B=No risk in some studies
- C=There may be some risk
- D=Positive evidence of risk
What side effects can occur from silver sulfadiazine?
Some side effects could occur when using this drug, tell your doctor if you have:
- Mild burning, itching, pain, or redness at the application site
- Skin discoloration
- Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue)
- Difficulty urinating
- Fever, chills, or sore throat
- Red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin
- Symptoms of liver problems (e.g., yellowing of the skin or eyes, dark urine, pale stools, nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite)
- Unusual bruising or bleeding
- Unusual tiredness or weakness
You may experience some, none, or other side effects not mentioned above. If you have any concerns about a side effect or it becomes bothersome, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
What drugs may interact with silver sulfadiazine?
This drug may interact with other medications. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist.
Known drugs and their interactions with medication include:
- Sulfonamides (e.g., sulfamethoxazole)
If you experience an adverse drug interaction, stop taking this drug and continue taking your other medication. Inform your doctor immediately to reevaluate your treatment plan. Your dose may need to be adjusted, substituted with another drug, or discontinue using the drug.
Does food or alcohol interact with silver sulfadiazine?
This drug may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects.
Inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have any concerns regarding food-drug interactions.
What health conditions may interact with silver sulfadiazine?
This drug should be taken with caution if you have any of the following conditions:
- Kidney problems
- Liver problems
- Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency
- Blood problems (e.g., anemia, low white blood cell levels, porphyrias)
The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using silver sulfadiazine.
What is the dose of silver sulfadiazine for an adult?
For treating second and third-degree burns
Adjunct for the prevention and treatment of wound sepsis in patients with second and third-degree burns: apply to affected areas once or twice a day to a thickness of approximately 1-2 mm.
Reapply as necessary to the affected areas. The drug should be reapplied immediately after accidentally rubbing it off, baths, or other activities.
What is the dose of silver sulfadiazine for a child?
The dosage has not been established in pediatric patients below 2 months old. It is always important to fully understand the safety of the drug administering it. Please consult with your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
How is silver sulfadiazine available?
This medication is available in the following brands, dosage forms, and strengths:
- Burnsil cream 1%
- Flammazine cream 1%
- Innoxiderm cream 1%
- Silvedex cream 10 g/g
- Silvertin cream 10 mg/g
- Silvex cream 1%
What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?
In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.
What should I do if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose of silver sulfadiazine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.