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What Is Calcipotriene Used For?

The prescription drug calcipotriene comes in two different forms: cream and liquid. This medicine is used to treat plaque psoriasis in adults only and should never be applied to the face. It is a synthetic form of vitamin D, but how it works is not clear at this time. On occasion, a healthcare provider may use calcipotriene in an off-label fashion to treat vitiligo.

An Overview of Uses for Calcipotriene

Calcipotriene (Dovonex®) is a prescription medication licensed to treat psoriasis. The cream form is approved to treat plaque psoriasis, and the liquid form is approved to treat chronic, moderately severe psoriasis of the scalp. Neither form should be used on the face.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease. It is thought to be caused by an overactive immune system (see Psoriasis Causes). There are several different types of psoriasis. The symptoms may vary, depending on the type. Plaque psoriasis, for example, is characterized by thickened, swollen, and red skin, often covered with silver scales.
Psoriasis treatment may include:
  • Medicines applied to the skin (topical treatment)
  • Light treatments (phototherapy)
  • Psoriasis medication, whether by mouth or injection, that treats the whole immune system (called systemic therapy).
Calcipotriene is a topical psoriasis medication.

How Does Calcipotriene Work?

Calcipotriene is a synthetic form of vitamin D. It is not entirely clear how this medication works to treat psoriasis.

Calcipotriene Use in Children

Calcipotriene is not approved for children. Talk with your child's healthcare provider about the benefits and risks of using calcipotriene in children.

Calcipotriene Drug Information

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