Lotrisone (Betamethasone and Clotrimazole) - Topical

What Is Lotrisone?

Lotrisone (betamethasone and clotrimazole) is a topical product used to treat certain fungal infections of the groin, feet, and body. It is a combination drug containing a corticosteroid and an antifungal.

Betamethasone is a corticosteroid. Corticosteroids are also sometimes referred to as steroids. It reduces redness, itching, and swelling by depressing the formation, release, and activity of certain chemicals that contribute to inflammation.

Clotrimazole is an antifungal. It causes the fungus cell membrane to leak, which kills the fungus and stops the fungal infection.

Lotrisone is available as a cream and lotion. It is approved for use in people 17 years and older.

Drug Facts

Generic Name: Betamethasone and clotrimazole

Brand Name(s): Lotrisone

Drug Availability: Prescription

Administration Route: Topical

Therapeutic Classification: Anti-infective/anti-inflammatory combination

Available Generically: Yes

Controlled Substance: N/A

Active Ingredient: Betamethasone and clotrimazole

Dosage Form(s): Cream, lotion

What Is Lotrisone Used For?

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Lotrisone to treat fungal infections and reduce swelling, redness, and itchiness of the skin in people 17 years and older with:

How to Use Lotrisone

Use Lotrisone twice daily for one to two weeks, as directed by your healthcare provider. Do not use it longer than instructed, as this increase the risk of more serious side effects.

Follow these steps to apply the lotion or cream:

  • Cleanse the affected area and dry well.
  • Wash your hands before and after use. Do not wash after if the treated area is on your hand.
  • If using lotion, shake well before use.
  • Apply a thin layer of lotion or cream to the affected area.
  • Gently rub it into your skin.

When using this medication, try to avoid:

  • Tight clothing if using Lotrisone on your groin
  • Occlusive dressing like a bandaid where Lotrisone is applied
  • Applying Lotrisone to your face, armpits (underarms), or vagina
  • Applying to scrapes, cuts, and broken or damaged skin

Importantly, do not take this medicine by mouth, as this medication is meant for topical (directly on the skin) use. Ingesting the cream or lotion can be harmful. Stop the medication and notify your healthcare provider if you experience skin irritation while using it.

People who are breastfeeding should avoid applying the lotion or cream directly on or around their nipple. Also, do not use Lotrisone for any diaper rash or redness on a child.

Storage

Store this medication at room temperature (between 68 F and 77 F). Do not store it in your bathroom. Keep Lotrisone lotion in an upright position only with its cap on. Keep your medications away from children and pets.

Toss all unused and expired drugs. Do not throw them down the sink, toilet, or drain. Ask your pharmacist about disposal options. Check out local drug take-back programs.

How Long Does Lotrisone Take to Work?

It takes about one week (or two weeks for an athlete's foot infection) to see the effects of Lotrisone.

What Are the Side Effects of Lotrisone?

This is not a complete list of side effects, and others may occur. A healthcare provider can advise you on side effects. If you experience other effects, contact your healthcare provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at fda.gov/medwatch or 1-800-FDA-1088.

Like other medications, Lotrisone may cause side effects while using it. Let your healthcare provider know about any side effects.

Common Side Effects

The most common side effects of Lotrisone (betamethasone and clotrimazole) are skin tingling and burning.

Severe Side Effects

Contact your healthcare provider promptly if you have serious side effects. Call 911 if you have a medical emergency or if your symptoms feel life-threatening. Serious side effects may include the following:

  • Adrenal gland problems: Fainting, mood changes, severe fatigue, severe nausea and vomiting, muscle weakness, and loss of appetite and weight
  • High blood sugar: Confusion, increased thirst and hunger, passing a lot of urine, flushing (sudden reddening of the skin), fast breathing, and fruity breath
  • Cushing syndrome: Moon face (a round, full, and puffy face), severe headache, slow wound healing, and weight gain in the belly or upper back
  • Skin changes: Pimples, stretch marks, thinning of the skin, changes in color, severe skin irritation, slow healing, and hair growth
  • Allergic reaction: Rash, wheezing, or trouble breathing

Lotrisone can also cause problems with eyesight. Contact your healthcare provider if you develop blurred vision or other vision changes.

Long-Term Side Effects

Lotrisone should not be used for longer than four weeks. Long-term use of this drug may lead to:

Report Side Effects

Lotrisone may cause other side effects. Call your healthcare provider if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

If you experience a serious side effect, you or your healthcare provider may send a report to the FDA's MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting Program or by phone (800-332-1088).

Dosage: How Much Lotrisone Should I Use?

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The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For topical dosage forms (cream or lotion):
    • For tinea cruris and tinea corporis:
      • Adults and children 17 years of age and older—Apply to the affected skin area(s) 2 times a day, in the morning and evening, for 1 week.
      • Children younger than 17 years of age—Use is not recommended.
    • For tinea pedis:
      • Adults and children 17 years of age and older—Apply to the affected skin area(s) 2 times a day, in the morning and evening, for 2 weeks.
      • Children younger than 17 years of age—Use is not recommended.

Modifications

Lotrisone use can cause reversible hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis suppression, leading to potential adrenal insufficiency. Adrenal insufficiency occurs when the adrenal glands don’t make enough of certain hormones. This can happen during or after treatment.

If you experience HPA suppression, your healthcare provider might gradually take you off Lotrisone, reduce your frequency of application, or switch you to another corticosteroid.

Risk factors for developing HPA axis suppression include:

  • Use of high-potency steroids
  • Large treatment surface areas
  • Prolonged use
  • Use of occlusive dressing on the skin
  • Liver failure
  • Young age

There have been no adequate studies on Lotrisone use in pregnant people. Therefore, it is unknown if it is safe to take during pregnancy. For this reason, it is recommended only to use this medication during pregnancy if the benefit outweighs any potential risks. Talk to your healthcare provider if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

Missed Dose

Apply the missed dose once you remember. If it is closer to your next dose than the missed dose, then skip the missed dose and return to your regular schedule. Do not apply extra or double the quantity.

Overdose: What Happens If I Use Too Much Lotrisone?

Applying too much Lotrisone on intact skin will rarely cause severe reactions. Still, to be safe, wash off any excess cream or lotion on your skin with water. Betamethasone and clotrimazole may cause harm if swallowed, so keep this medication out of reach of children and pets.

What Happens If I Overdose on Lotrisone?

Call your healthcare provider or the Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) immediately if you think you or someone else may have swallowed or overdosed on Lotrisone.
If someone collapses or isn't breathing after using Lotrisone, call 911 immediately.

Precautions

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If your skin infection does not improve within 1 week for jock itch or ringworm of the body, and 2 weeks for athlete's foot, or if it becomes worse, check with your doctor.

Using too much of this medicine or using it for a long time may increase your risk of having adrenal gland problems. The risk is greater for children and patients who use large amounts for a long time. Talk to your doctor right away if you have more than one of these symptoms while you are using this medicine: blurred vision, dizziness or fainting, a fast, irregular, or pounding heartbeat, increased thirst or urination, irritability, or unusual tiredness or weakness.

Check with your doctor right away if you have a skin rash, burning, stinging, swelling, redness, or irritation on the skin.

Check with your doctor right away if blurred vision, difficulty with reading, or any other change in vision occurs during or after treatment. Your doctor may want your eyes be checked by an ophthalmologist (eye doctor).

Do not use cosmetics or other skin care products on the treated areas.

To help clear up your skin infection completely and to help make sure it does not return, the following good health habits are important:

  • For patients using this medicine for athlete's foot:
    • Carefully dry the feet, especially between the toes, after bathing.
    • Avoid wearing socks made from wool or synthetic materials (eg, rayon or nylon). Instead, wear clean, cotton socks and change them daily or more often if your feet sweat freely.
    • Wear well-ventilated shoes (eg, shoes with holes) or sandals.
    • Use a bland, absorbent powder (eg, talcum powder) or an antifungal powder freely between the toes, on the feet, and in socks and shoes once or twice a day. Be sure to use the powder after clotrimazole and betamethasone combination cream has been applied and has disappeared into the skin. Do not use the powder as the only treatment for your fungus infection.
    These measures will help keep the feet cool and dry.
  • For patients using this medicine for jock itch:
    • Carefully dry the groin area after bathing.
    • Avoid wearing underwear that is tight-fitting or made from synthetic materials (eg, rayon or nylon). Instead, wear loose-fitting, cotton underwear.
    • Use a bland, absorbent powder (eg, talcum powder) or an antifungal powder freely once or twice a day. Be sure to use the powder after clotrimazole and betamethasone combination cream has been applied and has disappeared into the skin. Do not use the powder as the only treatment for your fungus infection.
    These measures will help reduce chafing and irritation and will also help keep the groin area cool and dry.
  • For patients using this medicine for ringworm of the body:
    • Carefully dry yourself after bathing.
    • Avoid too much heat and humidity if possible. Try to keep moisture from building up on affected areas of the body.
    • Wear well-ventilated clothing.
    • Use a bland, absorbent powder (eg, talcum powder) or an antifungal powder freely once or twice a day. Be sure to use the powder after clotrimazole and betamethasone combination cream has been applied and has disappeared into the skin. Do not use the powder as the only treatment for your fungus infection.
    These measures will help keep the affected areas cool and dry.

If you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.

What Are Reasons I Shouldn't Take Lotrisone?

You should avoid using the lotion if you are hypersensitive to:

  • Diprolene (betamethasone)
  • Lotrimin (clotrimazole)
  • Corticosteroids
  • Imidazoles (e.g., ketoconazole) 
  • Any part of Lotrisone's formulation

What Other Medications Interact With Lotrisone?

There are no known significant drug interactions with Lotrisone.

What Medications Are Similar?

Medications similar to Lotrisone that are used to treat fungal infection include:

  • Loprox, Penlac (ciclopirox)
  • Ala-Quin (clioquinol and hydrocortisone)
  • Lotrimin (clotrimazole)
  • Griseofulvin
  • Nizoral (ketoconazole)
  • Monistat 3, Monistat 7 (miconazole)
  • Lamisil (terbinafine)

Some antifungals like clotrimazole, miconazole, and terbinafine topical drugs are available over-the- counter (OTC), meaning you can purchase them from the store. Other medicines like Lamisil tablets, griseofulvin, Ala-Quin, and ciclopirox are only available with a prescription, which you need from your healthcare provider.

The above-listed drugs are other treatments prescribed for fungal infection. They are not medications recommended to take with Lotrisone. In addition, you should not take these drugs together. Talk to your pharmacist or healthcare provider if you have questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is Lotrisone used to treat?

    Lotrisone is used to treat fungal infections on the skin, such as athlete's foot, Jock itch, and ringworm of the body.

  • How long does it take for Lotrisone to work?

    If you are being treated for jock itch or ringworm, you may see the effects of Lotrisone within one week of starting it. For athlete's foot, it may take up to two weeks. Tell your healthcare provider if your symptoms don't improve after this time.

  • What are the common side effects of Lotrisone?

    Lotrisone can cause a tingling sensation on the skin or a burning feeling.

  • How should I use Lotrisone?

    Apply this prescription twice daily (about 12 hours apart) for one or two weeks, depending on the type of infection.

    To apply Lotrisone, remember to:

    • Cleanse the affected area and dry well.
    • Wash your hands before and after use. Do not wash after use if the application site is your hand.
    • Shake well before use when using the lotion.
    • Apply a thin layer of lotion or cream to the affected area.
    • Gently rub the medicine into your skin.

How Can I Stay Healthy While Taking Lotrisone?

Having fungal skin infection is prevalent and may happen to anyone. It could be ringworm, jock itch, or even an athlete's foot.

Using antifungals like Lotrisone as directed by a healthcare provider is necessary. Fungi love moisture and can spread very quickly, so try to keep the affected area of your skin dry at all times. Do not dry your healthy skin with a towel previously used on your affected skin. Wash and dry towels daily to prevent fungi growth.

Above all, give your medicine time to work. It may take a week or two to see results. Contact your healthcare provider immediately if you are not getting better or your symptoms worsen.

Medical Disclaimer

Verywell Health's drug information is meant for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a healthcare provider. Consult your healthcare provider before taking any new medication(s). IBM Watson Micromedex provides some of the drug content, as indicated on the page.

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Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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  2. LiverTox: Clinical and Research Information on Drug-Induced Liver Injury [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases; 2012-. Clotrimazole.

  3. Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed) [Internet]. Bethesda National Library of Medicine (US); 2006-. Bethamesone, topical.

  4. Jinagal J, Gupta PC, Pilania RK, Ram J. Systemic toxicity of topical corticosteroids. Indian J Ophthalmol. 2019;67(4):559-561. doi:10.4103/ijo.IJO_1091_18

  5. Fernández-Sánchez M, Iglesias MC, Ablanedo-Terrazas Y, Ormsby CE, Alvarado-de la Barrera C, Reyes-Terán G. Steroids are a risk factor for Kaposi's sarcoma-immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome and mortality in HIV infection. AIDS. 2016;30(6):909-914. doi:10.1097/QAD.0000000000000993

  6. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases. Adrenal insufficiency & Addison's disease.

By Queen Buyalos, PharmD
Queen Buyalos is a pharmacist and freelance medical writer. She takes pride in advocating for cancer prevention, overall health, and mental health education. Queen enjoys counseling and educating patients about drug therapy and translating complex ideas into simple language.