Dalacin cream is an antibiotic cream prescribed to treat a bacterial infection of the vagina called bacterial vaginosis (BV).

How does Dalacin cream work?

  • Dalacin cream contains the antibiotic clindamycin phosphate. It's inserted into the vagina using an applicator.
  • Clindamycin works by stopping the bacteria that cause BV from producing proteins that are essential to them. Without these proteins the bacteria cannot grow, replicate and increase in numbers.
The remaining bacteria die or are destroyed by the immune system and this clears up the infection.

Key facts about Dalacin cream

  • Dalacin cream is only licensed for adults but doctors may sometimes prescribe it to treat children.
  • You insert one applicatorful of cream into the vagina daily before going to bed.
  • A course of treatment may be prescribed for 3 or 7 seven days.
  • Dalacin cream can damage condoms and diaphragms so they won't work to prevent pregnancy or STIs.
  • Avoid using tampons or vaginal douches while using Dalacin cream.
  • The most common side effect is irritation of the vagina or cervix.
  • Tell your doctor straight away if you get severe, persistent or bloody diarrhoea.

Who shouldn't use Dalacin cream?

Dalacin cream is not suitable for:

  • People who are allergic to clindamycin or the related antibiotic lincomycin.
  • People with a history of inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis.
  • People with a history of bowel inflammation caused by antibiotic treatment (antibiotic-associated colitis).

Can I use Dalacin cream while pregnant or breastfeeding?

  • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding make sure your doctor knows before you start using Dalacin cream.
  • Clindamycin is not known to be harmful if used during pregnancy, but Dalacin cream will only be prescribed if your doctor thinks it is essential to treat your infection. Take extra care using the applicator to insert the cream if you do use Dalacin cream while pregnant.
  • Dalacin cream is not expected to be harmful to a breastfed baby, however you should consult your doctor straight away if your child develops diarrhoea or shows any sign of illness while you are using it.

How do I use Dalacin cream?

  • One applicator full of cream should be inserted into the vagina once a day at bedtime. Follow the instructions provided in the pack for how to use the applicator.
  • A course of treatment may be three or seven days. Follow the instructions given by your doctor. These should also be printed on the label that your pharmacist has put on the packet of medicine. If you are unsure, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
  • Unless otherwise directed by your doctor, make sure you complete the prescribed course of treatment, even if your symptoms appear to have cleared up. Stopping treatment early may result in the infection not being fully treated and thus coming back.
  • Dalacin cream can damage condoms and diaphragms and make them ineffective at preventing pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), so don't rely on these while you're using the cream. It's best to avoid having sex until after the infection has cleared up.

What are the side effects of Dalacin cream?

Medicines and their possible side effects can affect people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects that may be associated with Dalacin cream. Just because a side effect is stated here doesn't mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.

Very common side effects (affect more than 1 in 10 people)

  • Inflammation or irritation of the vagina or cervix.

Uncommon or rare side effects (affect fewer than 1 in 100 people)

  • Dizziness or spinning sensation.
  • Headache.
  • Disturbances of the gut, such as nausea, vomiting, heartburn, abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhoea.
  • Rashes or itching.

When clindamycin is taken by mouth it can sometimes cause inflammation of the bowel (colitis). Although this is very unlikely to occur when you use the antibiotic in the vagina, if you get diarrhoea either during or after using Dalacin cream, particularly if it becomes severe or persistent, or contains blood or mucus, you should stop using the cream and see your doctor straight away.

Read the leaflet that comes with the medicine or talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you want any more information about the possible side effects of Dalacin cream.

Can I use other medicines with Dalacin cream?

  • It's fine to take other medicines by mouth while you're using Dalacin cream. When clindamycin is inserted into the vagina it's absorbed into the bloodstream in much lower amounts than clindamycin taken by mouth and so is unlikely to affect other medicines that you are taking.
  • However, while you're using Dalacin cream it's best to avoid using other vaginal preparations, such as creams, pessaries and douches. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice if this is going to be a problem.