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Drugs List

  • ELOCON 0.1% scalp lotion
  • mometasone 0.1% lotion
  • Therapeutic Indications


    Treatment of inflammatory and pruritic manifestations of psoriasis and seborrhoeic dermatitis of the scalp.



    A few drops should be applied to the affected scalp area once daily. The scalp should then be massaged gently and thoroughly until medication is fully absorbed.


    See Dosage; Adults.


    A few drops should be applied to the affected scalp area once daily. The scalp should then be massaged gently and thoroughly until medication is fully absorbed. Children should always be treated with the lowest effective dose possible. Treatment should not exceed 5 days and occlusion should not be used.

    Children under 2 years old
    Safety and efficacy has not been established in children under 2 years old.

    Precautions and Warnings

    Pregnancy (see Pregnancy section)
    Breastfeeding (see Lactation section)

    Children and infants are particularly susceptible to adrenal suppression. Treatment of children should not exceed 5 days and occlusion should not be used.
    Caution is required in children under 2 years of age. The safety and efficacy of mometasone has not been established in these patients.

    Long-term, continuous use of topical corticosteroids should be avoided in all patients. Such use greatly increases the risk of local and systemic toxicity, particularly in flexural sites or when the preparation has been applied on large areas of damaged skin or when occlusion has been used. Adrenal suppression and atrophic skin changes are more likely to occur following long-term continuous therapy.

    Should an infection develop, use of an appropriate antifungal or antibacterial agent should be instituted. If a favourable response does not occur promptly, mometasone lotion should be discontinued until the infection is adequately controlled.

    Systemic absorption of topical corticosteroids can produce reversible hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis suppression with the potential for glucocorticosteroid insufficiency after withdrawal of treatment. Manifestations of Cushing's syndrome, hyperglycaemia, and glucosuria can also be produced in some patients by systemic absorption of topical corticosteroids while on treatment. Patients applying a topical steroid to a large surface area or areas under occlusion should be evaluated periodically for evidence of HPA axis suppression.

    Treatment with corticosteroids is associated with a number of side effects which may seriously complicate the condition of patients suffering with psoriasis. Patients may experience rebound relapse if tolerance develops; generalised pustular psoriasis and/or systemic toxicity may also arise as a consequence of a damaged skin barrier. Prescribers are therefore advised to carefully supervise the treatment of patients with psoriasis.

    Avoid sudden discontinuation. When long term topical treatment with potent glucocorticoids is stopped, a rebound phenomenon can develop which takes the form of a dermatitis with intense redness, stinging and burning. This can be prevented by slow reduction of the treatment, for instance continue treatment on an intermittent basis before discontinuing treatment.

    Avoid contact with the eyes.

    Contains propylene glycol. Discontinue if irritation or sensitisation occur.

    Pregnancy and Lactation


    Topical mometasone should only be used during pregnancy after careful consideration.

    At the time of printing, there are only limited data describing the topical use of mometasone in human pregnancy. The risk of side effects to the human foetus is unknown.

    Animal studies of topical corticosteroids have revealed side effects such as interference with brain growth, cleft palate and intra-uterine growth retardation.

    However, Lee (2000) note that the extensive human experience with systemic corticosteroids has not shown any evidence of congenital anomalies. Schaefer (2007), concludes that the use of potent topical corticosteroids such as mometasone furoate is acceptable during pregnancy if the preparation is applied to small areas and at the recommended dose. Lee (2000) recommends that treatment regimens should follow a pulse-dose pattern consisting of up to 7 days of steroid treatment followed by 2-3 days of abatement.

    Occlusion should probably be avoided, along with any other treatment regimen liable to augment systemic absorption (see Precautions and Warnings). Whenever possible, lower potency preparations should be preferred.

    The use of all medication in pregnancy should be avoided whenever possible; particularly in the first trimester. Non-drug treatments should also be considered. When essential, a medication with the best safety record over time should be chosen, employing the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time. Polypharmacy should be avoided. Teratogens taken in the pre-embryonic period, often quoted as lasting until 14-17 days post-conception, are believed to have an all-or-nothing effect. Where drugs have a short half-life, and when the date of conception is certain, this may allow women to be reassured where drug exposure has occurred within this time frame. Further advice may be available from the UK National Teratology Information Service (NTIS) and through ToxBase, available via password on the internet ( ) or if this is unavailable at the backup site ( ).


    Mometasone should only be given to nursing women after careful consideration.

    Corticosteroids may be excreted into breast milk. Hale (2010) suggests it would be unlikely for mometasone to be excreted into human milk in clinically relevant levels. Lee (2000) consider that the use of topical corticosteroids during lactation is unlikely to cause any problems.

    Neonates, infants born prematurely, those with low birth weight, those with an unstable gastrointestinal function or who have serious illnesses may require special consideration. For any infant, if a drug is prescribed to the nursing mother, it should be at the lowest practical dose and for the shortest time. When drug administration is unavoidable and breastfeeding is to continue, minimisation of exposure of the infant to the drug may sometimes be achieved by timing the maternal doses to just after a feeding episode. Infants exposed to drugs via breast milk should be monitored for unusual signs or symptoms. Interactions between the drug received by the infant from the mother's milk and medication prescribed for the infant should also be considered, for example, when the drug given to the infant may prevent metabolism of the drug received via breast milk.
    Specialist advice is available from the UK Drugs in Lactation Advisory Service at


    Advise patients to avoid contact with the eyes.

    Advise patient to avoid sudden discontinuation of therapy. Treatment can be intermittent before discontinuing.

    Side Effects

    Thinning of skin
    Perioral dermatitis
    Acne-like eruptions
    Mild depigmentation and vellus hair
    Adrenal suppression
    Burning sensation (local)
    Skin tingling
    Irritation (localised)
    Maceration (prolonged use)
    Exacerbation of infection
    Dry skin
    Pustular psoriasis
    Pain at application site
    Application site reaction
    Contact dermatitis
    Allergic dermatitis


    It is strongly recommended that the UK National Poisons Information Service be consulted on cases of suspected or actual overdose where there is doubt over the degree of risk or about appropriate management.

    The following number will direct the caller to the relevant local centre (0844) 892 0111

    Information may be obtained if you have access to ToxBase the primary clinical toxicology database of the National Poisons Information Service. This is available via password on the internet ( ) or if this is unavailable at the backup site ( ).

    Shelf Life and Storage

    Store below 25 degrees Celsius.

    Reference Sources

    British National Formulary, 63rd Edition (2012) Pharmaceutical Press, London.

    Drugs During Pregnancy and Lactation: Treatment Options and Risk Assessment, 2nd edition (2007) ed. Schaefer, C., Peters, P. and Miller, R. Elsevier, London.

    Medications and Mothers' Milk, 14th Edition (2010) Hale, T. Hale Publishing, Amarillo, Texas.

    Summary of Product Characteristics: Elocon Scalp lotion. Merck Sharp and Dohme Ltd. Revised August 2011.

    Therapeutics in Pregnancy and Lactation (2000) Lee, A., Inch, S. and Finnigan, D. Radcliffe Medical Press, Abingdon.

    US National Library of Medicine. Toxicology Data Network. Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed).
    Available at:
    Mometasone, topical. Last revised: April 3, 2012
    Last accessed: June 15, 2012

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