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The text below is about the active substance calcipotriol on the skin .

Important to know about calcipotriol on the skin

  • Calcipotriol reduces skin flakiness.
  • With psoriasis.
  • You will notice within 4 weeks that you have less problems with flakes. Your skin will also start to recover.
  • Ointment: Apply the ointment thinly to the psoriasis areas.
  • Lotion: is flammable. Be careful with open fire and hair dryer. You apply the lotion to your scalp.
  • Calcipotriol irritates your skin. Do not let this medication get on your face or in your eyes. Wash your hands well after application or use disposable gloves to protect your hands.
  • Also, use a greasy cream or ointment every day for skin irritation. Use this at least 1 hour after you lubricate calcipotriol.
  • Other side effects include burning or stinging, red skin, rash and itching. Are your psoriasis symptoms getting worse? Then contact your doctor.
  • Are you pregnant? Or do you want to get pregnant? Ask your doctor before taking this medicine. It is not certain whether this drug is safe for pregnant women.
  • Are you breastfeeding? This drug passes into breast milk. It is not certain whether this drug is safe for the baby. Ask your doctor if you can take this medicine.

What does calcipotriol do on the skin and what do I use it for?

  • Calcipotriol is a type of vitamin D . It reduces skin flakiness.
  • Doctors prescribe it for psoriasis .


Symptoms and cause

  • Psoriasis is a long-term skin disease in which the top layer of the skin grows too quickly. This creates too many skin cells that cannot ripen properly. The disease has periods with few complaints and periods in which the disease flares up. The cause is still unknown, but it is suspected that hereditary predisposition plays a role.
  • The symptoms are thickened skin with flakes, redness and itching. The severity of the disease varies from 1 to 2 small spots to extensive peeling of the skin.
  • Often there are also symptoms on the nails, such as small pits in the nails or a yellow-brown discoloration. Sometimes you also get problems with the joints, especially hands and feet.


  • In psoriasis it is important to grease the skin to reduce irritation. Therefore, lubricate the skin at least twice a day with an oily cream or ointment. The creams and ointments keep the skin supple and prevent the skin from drying out further.
  • Are the symptoms such as itching, redness or scaling getting worse? Then your doctor can prescribe an ointment or cream that contains medicines.
  • Your doctor will usually prescribe an ointment or cream containing an adrenal corticosteroid (corticosteroid) first. Do the corticosteroids not help enough after a few weeks? Then your doctor can add calcipotriol.


  • Calcipotriol slows down the growth of skin cells. After 2 to 4 weeks you will have less problems with flakes.
  • Your skin will also start to recover. The maximum effect is reached after 6 weeks.

What are possible side effects?

In addition to the desired effect, this can cause drug side effects.

The main side effects are the following.

Rare (affects 1 to 10 in 100 people)

  • Irritation to the skin , such as burning or stinging, red skin, rash, itching, inflammation of the skin and flakes coming off. Very rarely dry skin, inflamed hair follicle or eczema.
  • If you already have psoriasis , the symptoms may get worse. Then contact your doctor.

Very rare (affects less than 1 in 100 people)

  • Application site pain .
  • Hypersensitivity to this drug. You will notice this as a rash, hives or itching. Then consult your doctor. Severe hypersensitivity may be seen as fainting or swelling of the face, lips, mouth, tongue or throat. You can get very short of breath. Call a doctor immediately or go to the Emergency Service. If you are hypersensitive to calcipotriol do not use it anymore. Therefore, pass this on to the pharmacist. The pharmacy team can then ensure that you do not receive this medicine again.
  • Photosensitivity . Your skin may become more sensitive to UV light. For example from the sun, the solarium or UV lamp. This can cause itching, redness and severe burning. You can also suffer from a rash and skin discoloration. Are you just starting on this drug? Then stay out of direct sunlight, especially between 10:00 AM and 3:00 PM. Protect your skin from the sun. For example, with sunscreen and protective clothing, such as a hat and sunglasses. Do not use the tanning bed. Are you having a severe reaction to the sun? Then stop taking this drug and notify your doctor.
  • Too much calcium in the blood , especially with long-term use on large surfaces. You will notice this from a loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting and constipation. This can occur if too much calcipotriol gets into the blood through the skin. Consult your doctor if you experience these symptoms.

Consult your doctor if you experience too much of the above side effects or if you experience any other side effects that you are concerned about.

Explanation of frequencies

  • Regular : affects more than 30 in 100 people
  • Uncommon : affects 10 to 30 in 100 people
  • Rare : affects 1 to 10 in 100 people
  • Very rare : affects less than 1 in 100 people

How do I take this medicine?

Always look for the correct dosage on the label of the pharmacy or in the package leaflet.



  • Apply the ointment in a thin layer to the psoriasis patches. If you apply it too thick, you’re more likely to have side effects.
  • Do not use more than 15 grams of ointment per day. If you use more, you are more likely to have side effects.
  • DO NOT put this medication on your face, it can be easily irritated.
  • Wash your hands immediately after application. Unless you also have to use it on the psoriasis patches on your hands.


  • You use the lotion for your scalp.
  • Make sure there is no open fire nearby, such as a lit cigarette. The lotion is flammable.
  • Do not get this medication on your face or in your eye. If it accidentally gets to these areas, rinse well with water to remove the medicine.

Applying lotion to your scalp:

  • Tilt your head to keep the lotion from getting on your face.
  • It helps to part your hair before using the lotion.
  • 1 to 2 drops are sufficient for a place the same size as a postage stamp.
  • Rub the lotion in gently with your finger.
  • Do not use more than 60 ml of lotion per week. If you use more, you are more likely to have side effects.
  • Wash your hands immediately after application. Or you can use plastic gloves to protect your hands.


  • Apply if the psoriasis patches get worse. You often start with twice a day, for example in the morning and in the evening.
  • With the ointment you can switch to applying once a day if the complaints are less.
  • After application, no water should get on your skin for half an hour, otherwise rinse it off again. Choose a suitable time for this.
  • Also, use the greasy cream or ointment that your doctor usually prescribes every day.
    First, apply calcipotriol to your skin. Wait at least 1 hour before applying the greasy cream or ointment.

How long?

  • Ointment: It should be clearly noticeable that the medicine is working within 4 to 8 weeks. After this, talk to your doctor about whether you should continue treatment.
  • Lotion: should not be used for more than 22 consecutive weeks.

What if I miss a dose?

  • Forgetting once is not so bad. If you discover it after a few hours, you can still treat the spots.
  • Otherwise, skip treatment and go back to your regular schedule. It makes no sense to apply double the amount.

Can I drive a car, drink alcohol, and eat or drink anything with this medicine?

Yes, that’s possible. You are allowed to drive and eat and drink as you normally would.

Can I use calcipotriol on the skin with other medicines?

Are you taking this medicine with a hormone ointment or cream (corticosteroid)?

  • Then apply calcipotriol ointment or lotion in the morning and hormone cream or ointment in the evening.

Do not apply any other cream or ointment to the rubbed areas at the same time. You then have the chance that you smear this medicine with the following. Wait for calcipotriol to penetrate the skin. Then you can apply the other skin remedies. For example, apply the greasy cream or ointment at least 1 hour after calcipotriol.

Can I use this medicine if I am pregnant, planning to become or breastfeeding?


  • Too little is known about the use of this medicine during pregnancy. In any case, report it to your doctor and pharmacist as soon as you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant soon. If possible, you can temporarily switch to a different medication. However, if this medicine is urgently needed, your doctor will check the level of calcium in your blood.


  • If you want to breast-feed, talk to your doctor or pharmacist. It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. If you use this drug on small areas for a short time, it is unlikely to harm the baby. If your doctor thinks you can breast-feed, do not put this medicine on or around the nipples if you plan to breast-feed soon after.
  • Are you on prescription or over-the-counter medications? Would you like to help increase knowledge about medication use during pregnancy and breastfeeding? Then report your experience to pREGnant .

Can I just stop taking this medicine?

  • You can stop taking this medicine at any time at once.

Under what names is calcipotriol available on the skin?

The active substance calcipotriol on the skin is in the following products:

  • Calcipotriol
  •  Dovobet
  •  Stylish
  •  Calcipotriol/Betamethason

Do I need a prescription?

  • Calcipotriol has been on the international market since 1991. It is available by prescription in ointment and lotion as the unbranded Calcipotriol.
  • Calcipotriol is also used on the skin in combination with betamethasone under the brand name Dovobet in gel, Enstilar in foam and as the unbranded Calcipotriol / Betamethasone in ointment.

what drugs contain Calcipotriol?