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Prescribing topical medicines for skin infections

Resistance to fusidic acid is increasing because this topical medicine is being overused in New Zealand. This prescribing snippet will provide monthly updates over the next six months for topical medicines indicated for skin infections.

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National prescribing data for topical medicines

What prescribers need to know

  • Fusidic acid should NOT be used as a first-line treatment for skin infections, wound management, infected eczema or impetigo
  • Good hygiene measures and topical antiseptics such as hydrogen peroxide or povidone iodine should be used for minor infections
  • If antibiotics are required for skin infections, oral antibiotics are preferred
  • Topical antibiotics should be prescribed for short courses only, e.g. five to seven days, to minimise the development of resistance

Published: 27 February 2017 | Updated: 20 April 2017