What Is Terbinafine Used For?
What is terbinafine used for? This prescription drug is commonly used for the treatment of fingernail and toenail fungus, as well as ringworm of the scalp. It works by either killing the fungus or slowing down its growth. Besides nail infections, terbinafine is used in certain off-label fashions, such as treating other infections that are caused by a fungus.
Terbinafine hydrochloride (Lamisil®) is a prescription medicine that has been licensed to treat several different kinds of fungus. Terbinafine tablets are approved to treat fingernail and toenail fungus, and terbinafine oral granules are approved to treat tinea capitis (sometimes known as ringworm of the scalp).
Nail fungus is caused by an infection and can result in thick, brittle, and discolored nails. Unlike many other treatments for nail fungus, terbinafine is taken by mouth and works through the bloodstream. It either kills or slows down the growth of the fungi that cause nail infections. Terbinafine will not improve the appearance of nails that are already infected -- improvement will be seen as the new nails grow out. It may take several months to see improvement in the nails.
Terbinafine Uses for Tinea CapitisTinea capitis is a common fungal infection that often affects children. This fungal infection causes red patches or rings on the scalp. Sometimes they are itchy, and sometimes the area may appear bald. Antifungal creams or shampoos are sometimes used to treat the infection, although these can be messy and are not always effective. Unlike these types of treatments, terbinafine works through the bloodstream to kill the fungus.
Terbinafine granules have been approved to treat tinea capitis in children as young as four years old. Terbinafine tablets are not approved to treat toenail or fingernail fungus in children. You can discuss the risks and benefits of using it in children with your healthcare provider.