Mupirocin, an antibiotic, is used to treat impetigo as well as other skin infections caused by bacteria. It is not effective against fungal or viral infections.
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Mupirocin comes in an ointment that is applied to the skin. Mupirocin usually is applied three times a day for 1 to 2 weeks. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Use mupirocin exactly as directed. Do not use more or less of it or use it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Wash the affected skin area thoroughly, and then gently apply a small amount (a thin film) of the ointment. You may cover the area with a sterile gauze dressing.
Do not apply mupirocin to your eyes.
Do not apply mupirocin to burns unless told to do so by your doctor.
Before using mupirocin,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to mupirocin or any other drugs.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially chloramphenicol (Chloromycetin).
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while using mupirocin, call your doctor.
Apply the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not apply a double dose to make up for a missed one.
Mupirocin may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- burning, stinging, pain, itching, or rash
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
Keep all appointments with your doctor. Mupirocin is for external use only. Do not let mupirocin ointment get into your eyes, nose, or mouth, and do not swallow it. Do not apply dressings, bandages, cosmetics, lotions, or other skin medications to the area being treated unless your doctor tells you.
Do not let anyone else use your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
If you still have symptoms of infection after you finish the mupirocin, call your doctor.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.
Last Reviewed: September 1, 2010.