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More Information on Imiquimod's Indications

How Does This Medication Work?

It is not entirely clear why imiquimod works to treat actinic keratosis lesions, basal cell carcinoma, or genital warts. However, it is thought that the beneficial effects of the drug might be due to how it activates the immune system.

Can Children Use It?

Imiquimod is approved for treating genital or perianal warts in people age 12 and older. For basal cell carcinoma and actinic keratosis, it is approved only for use in adults. Imiquimod has been tried for the treatment of molluscum contagiosum in children, but studies have shown that it is not effective for this use.

Are There Off-Label Reasons to Use Imiquimod?

On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend imiquimod for something other than treating the conditions discussed in this article. This is called an "off-label" use. Off-label uses of imiquimod might include treating the following conditions:
  • Other types of warts (other than genital or perianal warts)
  • Actinic cheilitis (a precancerous condition of the lip)
  • Various forms of skin cancer
  • Cutaneous leishmaniasis (a parasitic skin infection)
  • Molluscum contagiosum (although studies of the drug in children have not shown it to be effective for this use).
Using Zyclara to treat basal cell carcinoma would also be an off-label use.
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Imiquimod Cream Information

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