Zyclara is a medication known as imiquimod (im′i-kwī′mod). It is a cream that is used topically on the skin to treat halo nevus when there are pre-cancerous cells on the face or the head and actinic keratoses. This medication works by modifying the immune system’s response by activating the release of cytokines, which are chemicals made by the cells. The medication may also speed up the process of the halo overtaking the nevus, but studies have not provided definitive results yet of 2013.
With a halo nevus, there is no treatment necessary unless there appears to be cancerous or pre-cancerous cells in the nevus, which is the mole in the center. In the case of pre-cancerous cells, Zyclara may be prescribed.
This medication comes in two strengths:
- 2.5% imiquimod
- 2. 3.75% imiquimod
The higher strength appears to be more effective in treating a halo nevus with cancer. More information on Zyclara trials and tests can be found on Drugs.com.
Zyclara is a hybrid medication, which means that it has the same active ingredient as another medication, but at a different power. The reference medicine for Zyclara is Aldara, which contains imiquimod at 5% strength. Aldara has more restrictions and side effects than Zyclara.
Treating Skin Lesions
Zyclara treatment includes a six-week cycle of using the cream for two weeks with a two weeks rest and then repeating. It works by stimulating the immune system. In addition to treating cancerous skin lesions, it is also used to treat the following:
- Gentile warts
- Perianal warts
It is important to follow the directions given by the prescribing physician. The cream is left on for about eight hours and then washed off. Using the cream more often, longer, or on larger areas than prescribed can increase the risks of side effects.
Side Affects of Zyclara
Medications always have side effects that may or may not be worth the risk to use it to treat a health issue. For cosmetic reasons, some people choose to treat this type of mole when it appears in a highly visible area like the face. When pre-cancerous cells are discovered, the risk of side effects can be worth it to prevent melanoma. These are some of the side effects of Zyclara:
- Sun sensitivity
- Skin drainage
- Erosion of skin
- Flu-like symptoms
Following the directions on the Zyclara bottle for application reduces side affect risks. By informing the prescribing healthcare professional of any new symptoms or side, changes that occur after treatment begins will reduce the risk of serious side effects.
Living in peace with a halo nevus is easy when there are no other issues with the mole or surrounding tissue is easy. In the case of pre-cancerous and cancerous cells being found, there is treatment available, like Zyclara.