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Aminolevulinic acid (On the skin)

Aminolevulinic Acid (a-mee-noe-lev-ue-LIN-ik AS-id)

Treats wart-like lesions (actinic keratoses).

Brand Name(s):

Ameluz, Levulan Kerastick

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

This medicine is not right for everyone. You should not receive it if you had an allergic reaction to aminolevulinic acid, porphyrins, or soybean phosphatidylcholine.

How to Use This Medicine:

Gel/Jelly, Liquid, Stick

  • You will receive this medicine in a clinic or doctor's office.
  • This medicine is applied on your lesions, and may include the skin around the lesions. Do not get any of it in your eyes, nose, mouth, or on your healthy skin. Rinse it off right away if it does get on these areas.
  • A nurse or other caregiver will apply the medicine. The next day, or several hours later, you will be treated with a blue or red light.
  • After treatment with this medicine, stay out of the sun or bright light as much as possible. Wear protective clothing when you go outside.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Some foods and medicines can affect how aminolevulinic acid works. Tell your doctor if you are using any of the following:
    • Glimepiride, glipizide, glyburide, griseofulvin, St John's wort
    • Antibiotics (including ciprofloxacin, doxycycline, levofloxacin, minocycline, moxifloxacin, tetracyclines, trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole)
    • Diuretic or water pill
    • Phenothiazine medicine (including chlorpromazine, prochlorperazine, promethazine)
    • Sulfa drugs

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have bleeding or blood clotting problems, porphyria, or skin that is sensitive to sun.
  • This medicine may cause the following problem:
    • Changes in vision
  • This medicine may make your skin more sensitive to sunlight. Wear sunscreen. Do not use sunlamps or tanning beds.
  • Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse.
  • Your doctor will check your progress and the effects of this medicine at regular visits. Keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Bleeding, blistering, or oozing of treated areas
  • Blurred vision, changes in vision, increased sensitivity of the eyes to sunlight
  • Swelling of the eyelids

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Changes in color of treated skin
  • Stinging, burning, redness, tingling, or itching skin

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088


Last Updated: 1/27/2017
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