Aldara

What is Aldara?

Aldara is a brand of imiquimod, which is a prescription medicine used to treat actinic keratoses (AKs), genital warts and sometimes, early stages of basal cell carcinoma. 

AKs and skin cancers often occur from extensive tanning bed or sunlamp use or prolonged sun exposure without protection. When damage is extensive, AKs and skin cancers sometimes form. Avoiding tanning beds and protecting your skin while in the sun will help reduce your risk of developing AKs and skin cancer.

The Treatment Process

Aldara is applied to targeted areas typically before bedtime. It should be left on the skin for several hours and then washed off. Be sure to follow directions carefully. Using too much can cause skin irritation or other reactions. As skin heals, scabbing and flaking should occur. If you don’t experience this, the Aldara may not be effective.

Treatment length will depend on your specific case. Your dermatologist will evaluate and determine how long to use Aldara and how often.

Does Aldara Have Side Effects?

Aldara should cause some skin reactions as a sign that it’s working, including redness, swelling and itching. But if this becomes extensive or severe, consult your dermatologist and they can adjust the dose. You should also contact your dermatologist if you experience sores that ooze, flu-like symptoms, headache, diarrhea, back pain or respiratory infection.

Related Conditions


Actinic Keratosis

Actinic keratosis, sometimes referred to as AK, is a precancerous growth on the skin. Learn More

Other Treatments

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