Desonide Cream: Uses Plus Side Effects

Desonide Cream: Uses Plus Side Effects

Desonide medication is a topical corticosteroid which is prescribed by doctors to treat eczema. It sits on the soft end of the spectrum (lower potency) of common topical steroids, just a cut above the over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream.

Desonide is available both as a cream or foam with a prescription. Its use is authorized for persons aged three months and over. The drug has several brand names, including Desonate and Verdeso.


Desonide is used to treat itching, swelling, and irritation of the body skin caused by many sorts of dermatitis. It is one of the most commonly prescribed topical steroids. Due to its gentle nature, it is suitable for children and can be used on the face.

The actual mechanism of desonide action is unfamiliar. It is believed that an active immune system and allergies contribute to the development of eczema. Steroid drugs can suppress the immune system, which helps resolve symptoms.

Before taking

Before using Desonide, tell your doctor about any allergies (to food, animals, or dyes, for example) and if you have diabetes, immune system problems, or other health problems.

This includes skin conditions such as rosacea, perioral dermatitis, or folliculitis, as desonide can make some skin problems worse.


Desonide comes in varied formulations and can be prescribed in different strengths. Follow your physician’s instructions for the application of cream accurately.

Topical steroids are generally measured in “fingertip units” (UFD). The measurement is what it appears to be: 

One unit of the fingertip = the amount of drug delivered to the index finger from tip to first joint. This gives an approximate dose of 0.5 grams.

The amount required depends on the affected skin area. For example, 1 UF is usually sufficient for a baby’s face and neck, while an entire adult arm and hand will need about 4 UF. Never exceed the prescribed amount, no matter how severe your signs or symptoms are.

How to use topical steroids safely.


How to take and store

Most often, desonide is applied as a thin layer to the affected area twice a day. Desonide is not used as a moisturizer substitution. People with eczema are widely prescribed to use 1 per day as well.

Desonide cream should be placed at room temperature. Shake it before usage and wash hands after its application. Get rid of the medicine in your eyes, mouth, or open sores or cuts.

Don’t use this medicine for more than four consecutive weeks. All topical steroids should be used for the short period of time possible to avoid its damaging side effects.

Side effects

Steroids come with certain risks, which makes many people wonder if their use is really necessary. While topical steroids may have side effects that should be considered, they are generally less severe than their oral counterparts (especially those taken long term).


The most commonly reported side effects of Desonide Cream are headache and a burning or irritation where the drug is applied.

Other side effects may also be reported:

  • Dilution of the skin where it is applied (more likely with prolonged use)
  • Acne breakouts where the drug is applied
  • Itching
  • Folliculitis
  • Hypopigmentation of the skin in the area where the drug is applied


Topical steroids can be absorbed into the blood and interfere with your body’s ability to make its own steroid hormones. This phenomenon is more likely to occur in children using topical steroids than in adults, and the risk is increased depending on the strength of the steroid used and whether you apply the medicine to a scrape.

To avoid this, always use the least potent topical steroid needed to control your condition for the shortest time possible.

Warnings and interactions to use

Possibly this medicine also has some damaging allergic reaction to desonide. Wash off the medicine immediately and seek medical help if you experience extreme redness and itching accompanied by swelling, difficulty breathing (wheezing), or any other symptoms that seem alarming.

There is little scientific research on the use of this drug during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, tell your doctor before you start taking this medicine and contact your doctor immediately if you become pregnant while taking this medicine.


This article contains information only. Please always consult your doctor before taking this medicine.


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