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What should I know about sulfacetamide before using it?

Before using sulfacetamide you should know that sulfacetamide is a type of sulfonamide, so you should avoid it if you are allergic to other sulfa products. You also should be aware that some sulfacetamide preparations used for the skin contain metabisulfite. This substance also can cause allergic reactions, including wheezing and anaphylaxis. In addition, there is a risk of developing rare, but potentially fatal, side effects of sulfacetamide, including certain skin, liver and blood disorders. As with all medications, you should use sulfacetamide exactly as directed by your doctor and use it for as long as recommended. Stopping treatment before an infection is fully resolved can cause it to return. Continuing treatment beyond the recommended time also may cause problems. With sulfacetamide eye preparations, prolonged use can encourage the growth of organisms that are resistant to it, including fungi and other bacteria. When you are using sulfacetamide skin preparations, you should know that the absorption of sulfacetamide through the skin will be increased if it is applied to large areas of open skin. You should talk to your doctor before using it in this situation. You also should know that sulfacetamide is not compatible with silver, so it should not be used with silver-containing medications. Sulfacetamide is classified by the United States Food and Drug Administration as a pregnancy Category C drug, which means that it might harm a developing fetus if taken during pregnancy. You should notify your doctor if you are pregnant, plan on becoming pregnant or breastfeeding.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.