Monobenzone is most often used to treat a skin condition known as vitiligo in which the coloring of the skin becomes patchy and uneven. The medication permanently removes the pigment from the normal skin surrounding the light patches caused by the vitiligo. Since monobenzone permanently changes the skin color, it is not meant for minor discolorations caused by pregnancy, hormone medications, freckles, age spots, sun damage, or skin trauma.
Monobenzone is for topical use only. The medication is typically applied to the normal areas of skin two to three times daily. Patients should use caution to avoid getting the medication in their eyes, nose, or mouth. The treated skin should be protected from prolonged sun exposure as well as tanning beds. Patients should wear a high SPF sunscreen and protective clothing when outdoors. It is important to take the medication regularly to get the best results. If a dose is missed, do not take a double dose. Resume normal dosing with the next scheduled dose.
It may take as long as 4 months for the full effects of the medication to be apparent. Once an even skin color is achieved, a regimen of bi-weekly application can be used to maintain the results.
Monobenzone may not be appropriate for patients who are allergic to hydroquinone. Patients should inform their doctor or pharmacist of any allergies before taking monobenzone. Pregnant and nursing women should consult their doctor before taking the medication.
Patients taking monobenzone may experience redness or mild burning and irritation of the skin. Consult a doctor or pharmacist if these effects continue or worsen. In rare cases, there can be discoloration of the skin that is not being treated. Patients who develop a rash, difficulty breathing, or swelling of the face, tongue, or throat should seek emergency medical treatment.
Our pharmacists are ready to help you find the right commercial or compounded medication to manage your health.
"It is rare to find health professionals who are so willing to educate the patient on what they need to know."