What are Side Effects of Cyclosporin for Eczema?

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… Continued …

And as noted before, typically the side effects settle on withdrawal of cyclosporin. But the longer you take it, the greater chance for more severe side effects to occur.

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Problems of kidney function and hypertension (high blood pressure) are some serious side effects that may occur during or after taking cyclosporin. For these reasons, your blood pressure and kidney function must be checked before taking the treatment – and must also be closely monitored throughout treatment!

Another serious side effect is the risk of certain types of cancer, because cyclosporin can affect the body immune system. Therefore if you have any serious forms of cancer, it is not the option for your eczema.

Since it can suppress the body immune system, there is also chance for you to become easier to get viral, fungal, or bacterial infection. That’s why if you have tuberculosis or other severe infections, it is not recommended.

Excessive hair growth may also occur. In men, this side effect is not a big problem to deal. But in women, it can be distressing, particularly if the excessive hair growth occur in the unexpected sites of the body.

Other side effects may include headaches, gum-enlargement (this usually occurs from taking higher doses of cyclosporin), shaky hands /tremor, pins and needles, or nausea.

Summary

The following are some major checklists you need to remember about cyclosporin:

  1. It can provide a quick improvement in helping to treat eczema (atopic eczema, the most common type of eczema with wrong respond of immune system may play a key role in causing the problem).
  2. It acts as a potent immunosuppressive agent, in other words it can suppress the immune system.
  3. Typically, it is prescribed for short-term treatment to make the problem under control. However, in some cases it also can be used for maintenance therapy (about a year or maybe more).
  4. Reduced efficiency of the kidneys and hypertension are the main side effects. For these reasons, regular monitoring of renal function & blood pressure is important during treatment.
  5. The risk of developing serious side effects (including for cancer) increases with continued long-term use.

Cyclosporin is not purposed for mild cases of eczema because the risk of side effects can be greater than the benefits. Before taking this medicine, consult completely with your doctor about this issue. Tell to him if you are also taking other medicines to make sure that there is no specific medicine interaction.

Citation /reference:
A general guideline about ‘Cyclosporin’ published by the National Eczema Society, this file can be downloaded on www.eczema.org/factsheets (accessed on May 2014)
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