Bactroban nasal ointment contains the active ingredient mupirocin, which is an antibacterial medicine. It is used to eliminate staphylococcal bacteria from the nasal passages. In particular, it is usually reserved for eradicating methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria from the nasal passages of hospital inpatients.
What is it used for?
- Eradicating staphylococcal bacteria, in particular MRSA, from the nostrils in order to prevent infections.
How does it work?
- Bactroban nasal ointment contains the active ingredient mupirocin, which is an antibacterial medicine. It is used to eliminate staphylococcal bacteria from the nasal passages. In particular, it is usually reserved for eradicating methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria from the nasal passages of hospital inpatients.
- Certain bacteria, including MRSA, are found naturally on many people's skin and inside their nose. These bacteria are usually harmless and don't cause any problems. However, they can cause infection if they get into a wound or spread to other parts of the body.
How do I use it?
- Bactroban nasal ointment should be applied inside the nostrils twice a day for at least five days. Follow the instructions given by your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
- A small amount of the ointment (about the size of a match head) should be placed on the little finger and applied to the inside of each nostril. The nostrils should then closed by pressing the sides of the nose together to spread the ointment around the nostrils. A cotton bud may be used instead of the little finger for applying the ointment to infants or patients who are very ill.
- Wash your hands after applying the ointment.
- A swab will be taken from the nose two days after completing this treatment to confirm that the bacteria have been eradicated.
- The course may be repeated if this sample is positive (and the throat is not colonised). To avoid the bacteria developing resistance to mupirocin, the treatment course should not exceed seven days and the course should not be repeated on more than one occasion.
- Avoid getting the ointment in contact with the eyes. If it gets in the eyes they should be thoroughly rinsed with plenty of water.
- Not to be used in
- People with known sensitivity or allergy to any ingredient.
- This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.
- If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.
- The safety of this medicine for use during pregnancy has not been fully established. The manufacturer therefore advises that it should only be used during pregnancy if the potential benefits outweigh any risks to the developing baby. However, since very little of the medicine is absorbed into the bloodstream from the nasal lining it is likely to be low risk to a developing baby. Seek further medical advice from your doctor if you are or think you could be pregnant.
- There is limited information available about the safety of this medicine during breastfeeding. However, it is likely to be low risk to a nursing infant because very little of the medicine is absorbed into the mother's bloodstream from the nasal lining. Seek further medical advice from your doctor if you are breastfeeding.
Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with this medicine. Just because a side effect is stated here, it does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.
Uncommon (affect between 1 in 100 and 1 in 1000 people)
- Itching, redness, burning, tingling or stinging sensation in the nose.
Very rare (affect fewer than 1 in 10,000 people)
- Skin irritation or allergic reaction.
The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the medicine's manufacturer.
For more information about any other possible risks associated with this medicine, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.
How can this medicine affect other medicines?
This medicine is not known to affect other medicines. However, other nasal products (eg nasal drops or sprays) should not be applied at the same time as the ointment, as they could dilute it and make the antibiotic less effective.