Doxepin (On the skin)

Doxepin (DOX-e-pin)

Reduces itching caused by skin diseases such as atopic dermatitis or lichen simplex chronicus.

Brand Name(s):

Prudoxin, Zonalon

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to doxepin, or if you have glaucoma or problems urinating.

How to Use This Medicine:


  • Apply a thin layer of the medicine to the affected area. Rub it in gently.
  • Apply a thin layer of this medicine each time you use it.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water before and after you use this medicine.
  • Do not cover the treated area with a bandage unless directed by your doctor.

If a dose is missed:

  • Apply a dose as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and apply a regular dose. Do not apply extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist or doctor how to dispose of the medicine container and any leftover or expired medicine.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are using MAO inhibitors such as Eldepryl®, Marplan®, Nardil®, or Parnate®, or allergy medicines.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are using medicine for depression such as trazadone, Clexa®, Prozac®, Paxil®, or Zoloft®, or amitriptyline, Norpramin®, or Vivactil®.
  • There are many other drugs that can interact with doxepin. Make sure your doctor knows about all other medicines you are using.
  • Tell your doctor if you use anything else that makes you sleepy. Some examples are allergy medicine, narcotic pain medicine, and alcohol.
  • Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breast feeding.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Confusion, hallucinations, severe weakness, vomiting, muscle stiffness.
  • Drowsiness or lightheadedness or fainting.
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Swelling in your feet, arms, or body.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Burning or stinging of your skin where the medicine in applied.
  • Change in taste or dryness of your mouth.
  • Headache or tiredness.
  • Nervousness, anxiety.
  • Numbness in your tongue.
  • Redness, pain, swelling, or itching on site of cream application.
  • Worsening of you skin condition.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Last Updated: 11/6/2020

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