Becaplermin (On the skin)
Aids in healing diabetic skin ulcers on the feet or legs.
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 becaplermin, or if you have skin cancer or tumors at the site of the skin ulcer.
How to Use This Medicine
- Use this medicine only on your skin and only on the area prescribed by your doctor. Do not get it in your eyes, nose, mouth, or vagina. You should not use on any other rashes, sores, or cuts. If it does get on these areas, rinse it off right away.
- Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to use. Depending how quickly your skin ulcer heals, your doctor may change the dose of your medicine. Using more than your doctor tells you will not help your skin ulcer heal more quickly.
- It is important to prevent the tip of the tube from touching the skin ulcer or any other object.
- Wash your hands with soap and water before and after using this medicine.
- Squeeze the gel onto a clean surface that will not absorb the medicine, such as a piece of wax paper. Do not apply the medicine directly from the tube onto the skin.
- Close the tube tightly after each use.
- Use a cotton swab, tongue depressor, or other applicator aid to spread an even layer of gel over the surface of the skin ulcer.
- Cover the skin ulcer with a gauze dressing that has been moistened with saline solution.
- Leave the skin ulcer covered for 12 hours.
- After 12 hours, remove the gauze. Carefully rinse the skin ulcer with saline or water to remove any medicine remaining.
- After washing off the medicine, put another saline-moistened gauze dressing on the area for the next 12 hours.
- This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. Ask your pharmacist for the Medication Guide if you do not have one.
If a dose is missed:
- If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, apply it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to apply the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not apply extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
- Leave the medicine and gauze dressing on the skin ulcer for 12 hours before removing.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine
- Store this medicine in the refrigerator. Do not freeze.
- Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of the used medicine container and any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed. You should not use the medicine after the expiration date that is stamped on the end of the tube.
- Keep all medicine away from children and 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.
- You should not use other medicines on your skin ulcer at the same time, unless instructed by your doctor.
- Do not use cosmetics or other skin care products on the treated skin areas.
Warnings While Using This Medicine
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have poor blood flow to your lower legs and feet, or any type of cancer.
- This medicine works best when used with other methods for good skin ulcer care, such as not bearing weight on the leg that has the skin ulcer. Follow all other directions from your doctor in caring for your skin ulcer.
- It is important to use the proper amount and not to use more than prescribed. Using too much of this medicine may increase your risk of having cancer. Your doctor will decide if you should continue to use this medicine based on how well your skin ulcer has healed.
- If burning, itching, redness, skin rash, swelling, or soreness at the application site occurs, stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away.
- Do not use this medicine for a skin problem that has not been checked by your doctor.
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
- Pain, redness, warmth, or swelling around the skin ulcer.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Burning sensation at the application site.
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 Reviewed on 06/12/2013
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This page was last updated: September 18, 2013