Dovobet is a topical (skin) treatment for scalp psoriasis and mild-to-moderate skin (not scalp) plaque psoriasis (psoriasis vulgaris).
Can I get Dovobet online?
The Online Clinic can prescribe Dovobet to patients with psoriasis if they have been properly diagnosed. Please complete a free consultation to begin.
What is Dovobet?
Dovobet contains two active medicines - calcipotriol (50 micrograms/g) and betamethasone (0.5 mg/g). Calcipotriol is a form of vitamin D and betamethasone is a strong corticosteroid for topical use.
Psoriasis is a skin condition in which skin cells are produced at a faster rate than normal, and faster than old skin cells can be shed. Skin cells therefore accumulate on the skin's surface, and result in the characteristic red and scaly patches of skin seen in psoriasis. Calcipotriol works by suppressing the rate of skin cell production, while betamethasone reduces the inflammation and irritation of the affected skin.
How to use Dovobet
There are gel and ointment preparations of Dovobet. The gel is used specifically for scalp psoriasis, while both gel and ointment are used to treat plaque psoriasis. Dovobet should be used only on psoriasis patches – not on healthy skin, damaged skin, mucous membranes, in skin folds (such as under armpits and breasts, and the groin), or on the face or genitals.
Dovobet is applied once daily. Evening applications may be most convenient to you, and results are usually seen after two weeks. It is usually used for four weeks, but you may need an extended period of treatment. You should not sunbathe or use ultra-violet light treatment on treated skin areas. Neither should you cover the treated area with bandages, wraps, dressings, or bathing hats, as this may cause more medicine to be absorbed through the skin and lead to side effects.
You use the gel and ointment on the skin in a similar way. Your hands should be washed before application. The gel is in a bottle that must be shaken before use. The ointment is in a sealed tube, which is opened by piercing the seal with the prong in the cap. The medicine is then squeezed onto your finger and rubbed into the affected skin. Wash your hands (except if this is the area of treatment) again after application. Take care not to spread Dovobet gel and ointment to other body parts, particularly your scalp, face, mouth and eyes, and wipe it off any healthy skin immediately. Avoid showering and bathing immediately after applying Dovobet. Dovobet may stain materials that easily absorb grease.
For scalp application, firstly comb your hair to remove loose skin scales and part your hair to expose the affected area. After shaking the bottle, place a few drops of Dovobet on your fingertips. Tilting your head backwards, rub the gel into the area of psoriasis. Usually, up to one teaspoon is sufficient. You don't have to wash your hair beforehand and, for best results, it is preferable not to wash your hair straight after using Dovobet. Leave it on your scalp over night or the day. Hair washing tips that may be useful include applying a mild shampoo to dry hair (especially treatment areas), and leaving the shampoo on your scalp for one or two minutes before washing as usual.
Using more Dovobet than you have been advised can cause side effects. Do not use more than 15 grams per day or treat more than 30% of your body per day. It is important that you do not use twice as much medicine if you miss a dose; continue as normal. When discontinuing Dovobet, do so as instructed by your doctor. Stopping this medicine may have to be a gradual process if you have used it for a long-time period as you could have a flare up of your skin complaint.
Who can use Dovobet?
Dovobet is for use by adults (people aged 18 years or over) with psoriasis. Women should not use Dovobet if they are/might be pregnant, trying for a baby, or are breastfeeding. It may be permissible to breastfeed while using Dovobet, but you must avoid treating your breasts.
Dovobet is not to be used by anyone who is allergic to calcipotriol or betamethasone or any other ingredients in the gel or ointment. It must also be avoided if you have abnormal calcium levels in your blood; have specific forms of psoriasis called exfoliative, erythrodermic, and pustular psoriasis; or have skin infections caused by viruses, fungi, bacteria, or parasites (ask your doctor about any skin problems you have, especially if you suspect an infection). Other conditions that preclude you from using Dovobet include tuberculosis; dermatitis (red rash) that surrounds your mouth; skin that is thin, with stretch marks, or has fragile veins, ulcers or is broken; ichthyosis (fish-like scaly, dry skin); acne; or rosacea (red, swollen facial skin). It is important to know that your blood sugar levels could be affected by Dovobet if you have diabetes.
Tell your doctor about all your recent past, present and future medicines – this includes prescription or self-obtained medicines, supplements and remedies. It is important that you state any medications that also contain corticosteroids due to possible side effects.
Dovobet Side Effects
Your psoriasis could worsen with treatment; report to your doctor if this happens. Both active ingredients of Dovobet can cause side effects. Using too much betamethasone can reduce the levels of hormones that are produced by the adrenal glands, and you may feel tired, depressed or anxious; or your vision may be cloudy or red and painful caused by cataract formation or increased eye pressure. You may get infections or develop pustular psoriasis or if you have diabetes experience fluctuations in your blood glucose levels. These side effects are very rare but if you notice any of them stop applying Dovobet and tell your doctor immediately.
Using too much calcipotriol can cause an allergic reaction with swelling of your face, mouth, throat, hands or feet, and trouble breathing. Stop Dovobet treatment and tell your doctor immediately. It can alter blood or urine calcium levels causing increased urination, constipation, muscle weakness, and sometimes confusion and coma. Normal calcium levels return on discontinuation of treatment.
Common general side effects that you may experience include itchy peeling skin, while a few people report acne or infection. General side effects related to betamethasone include skin thinning, stretch marks, visible blood vessels, inflamed rash, red rash surrounding the mouth, hair growth, swollen hair follicles, gold-coloured skin bumps, or lighter-coloured skin. General calcipotriol-related side effects include dry, itchy, red, or burning skin, skin rash (sometimes inflamed), skin sensitivity to light, or eczema. Rarely people report high blood calcium levels, and worsening of psoriasis after treatment discontinuation.