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Clotrimazole and betamethasone are provided in combination therapy to treat patients with fungal infections of the feet or groin, known as jock itch or athlete's foot. A commercial preparation known as Lotrisone® offers these medications already blended for ease of use. The drugs are available by prescription only and are intended to be applied topically to the area of infection. Directions for use should be carefully followed for best results.
The clotrimazole is an antifungal medication that will kill the organisms causing the infection. Betamethasone is a corticosteroid and will address pain, swelling, and inflammation at the site. The combination of clotrimazole and betamethasone effectively addresses the infection and will help the patient make a full recovery. It is available in the form of a cream or lotion intended to be spread evenly across the site where the infection is present.
To use clotrimazole and betamethasone, patients need to wash and pat dry the area of infection, as it is important for it to be clean and dry. The medication can be spread with a finger or applicator and massaged into the skin for even coverage. Ideally, fresh air should be allowed to flow over the area before putting clothes and shoes back on. Patients should also make sure to keep the infected area covered in shared spaces to avoid transmitting the fungus to other people while they are being treated.
Common side effects of clotrimazole and betamethasone include peeling, itching, and redness where it is applied. Patients may develop an allergic reaction, experiencing hives, difficulty breathing, and pain. In these cases, use of the medication should be discontinued. It is also possible to develop a buildup of corticosteroids in the blood, caused by absorbing the betamethasone through the skin, and this may lead to weight gain and the development of excess body hair.
Patients taking clotrimazole and betamethasone may have a course of varying lengths, depending on the degree of the infection. A dermatologist is usually involved in supervising treatment. If the infection doesn't respond to the combination therapy, a scraping may be taken to see if another organism is present. Other drugs may be prescribed if the infection is caused by a bacteria or a different fungus. Patients with a history of fungal infections of the skin should remain alert to signs of recurrence, as the earlier treatment is provided, the more quickly the patient will recover from the infection.
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