Dovobet

Dovobet

Dovobet comes as both a gel and an ointment that is used to treat plaque psoriasis in adults. Plaque psoriasis is the most common form of psoriasis.  In fact, plaque psoriasis is very common and affects and 2 to 3% of the population, it causes plaques of elevated, scaling inflamed skin and is often itchy and/or painful. More information

A doctor will review your order and write you a prescription, if appropriate. This prescription is then forwarded to a pharmacy. The pharmacy will have your medicine delivered to you within one to three working days. Read more about this process here.

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Instruction costs (includes consult & service fee)
Service – Instruction costs (includes consult & service fee)

Psoriasis is an immune condition which causes symptoms on the skin and sometimes in the joints. It can occur anywhere on the body including the scalp, hands, feet and genitals, however different types of psoriasis tend to occur on different areas of the body. If someone has psoriasis it speeds up their skin replacement process, so skin cells reproduce in just a few days instead of 3-4 weeks, this causes an accumulation of skin cells which leads to flaky, red, itchy, mottled and scaly skin. The good news is that most people can successfully control their psoriasis with the right treatment. 

What is Dovobet? 

Dovobet comes as both a gel and an ointment that is used to treat plaque psoriasis in adults. Plaque psoriasis is the most common form of psoriasis. 

In fact, plaque psoriasis is very common and affects and 2 to 3% of the population, it causes plaques of elevated, scaling inflamed skin and is often itchy and/or painful. 

Dovobet contains two active ingredients: 

  • Calcipotriol which helps to reduce the rate of skin cell growth and bring it back in line with a more normal rate; 
  • Betamethasone which acts on the inflammation, helping to reduce it. 

When is Dovobet used? 

Dovobet is used to treat psoriasis in adults: 

  • Dovobet gel is used to treat scalp psoriasis and mild to moderate plaque psoriasis; 
  • Dovobet ointment is used to treat stable plaque psoriasis

Psoriasis is not just a skin condition, although it can sometimes be diagnosed simply by the appearance of your skin. A doctor will also look at family history and you may need to send off samples for testing or even a blood sample. 

Psoriasis can also have a psychological effect which is not always in line with the severity of the visible symptoms, do not be afraid to talk to a medical professional about the psychological effect as they may be able to offer assistance. 

You will usually notice an improvement after using Dovobet for around two weeks. 

How do you use Dovobet? 

Always used Dovobet exactly as instructed by your doctor or pharmacist, as a general rule you can follow the instructions below, but check with your doctor if you are unsure about anything. 

  • Only use on psoriasis and not on areas of your skin that do not have psoriasis; 
  • Wash your hands before you start; 

For the ointment: 

Remove the cap and check that the seal on the tube is not broken before you use the ointment for the first time; 

  • Use the point of the back of the lid to break the seal; 
  • Squeeze the ointment or gel onto your finger; 
  • Rub gently into the skin and cover the whole of the affected area, allowing the ointment or gel to sink in. 

For the Gel: 

Shake the bottle well before use; 

  • Before applying to the scalp, comb your hair to remove any loose scales; 
  • Remove the cap and squeeze the gel onto your finger or directly onto psoriasis; 
  • Tilt your head back to avoid the gel running into your eyes; 
  • Rub the gel in gently into the affected area until it is covered by a thin layer of gel. 

Once you have applied the ointment or gel: 

  • Do not bandage, wrap or tightly cover the skin affected by psoriasis; 
  • Wash your hands thoroughly after applying the ointment or gel as this will prevent you from transferring the treatment to other parts of your body (particularly the face, eyes, scalp and mouth) 
  • If you accidentally get some of the ointment or gel on your skin next to the area where you have psoriasis, don’t worry but wipe it off if it spreads too far; 
  • To give the treatment time to work, do not take a shower or have a bath immediately after applying the ointment or gel; 
  • Keep fabrics that are easily stained by grease (for example silk) away from your skin directly after you have applied the treatment. 

What dosages are there? 

Your doctor will decide on the right dose for you and the length of time for the treatment, always follow their instructions. Below are the guidelines for doses. 

Dovobet Gel for treating scalp psoriasis: 

  • Apply 1-4g once daily for 4 weeks; 
  • This treatment can be repeated on the advice of a medical professional; 
  • Shampoo off after leaving on overnight or during the day; 
  • If you are using different medications containing the active ingredient calcipotriol the maximum dose is 5mg in one week. 

Dovobet Gel for treating plaque psoriasis: 

  • Apply once daily for 4 weeks; 
  • You can continue to treatment for longer on the advice of a medical professional; 
  • Only apply to a maximum of 30% of the body surface 
  • If you are using different medications containing the active ingredient calcipotriol the maximum dose is 5mg in one week; 
  • The daily maximum dose is 15g. 

Dovobet ointment to treat stable plaque psoriasis: 

  • Apply once daily for a max of 4 weeks; 
  • You can continue to treatment for longer on the advice of a medical professional; 
  • Only apply to a maximum of 30% of the body surface 
  • If you are using different medications containing the active ingredient calcipotriol the maximum dose is 5mg in one week; 
  • The daily maximum dose is 15g. 

What are the side effects of Dovobet? 

As with all medicines, Dovobet comes with a warning of some side effects, not everyone who uses the treatment will experience side effects. 

  • Some serious side effects have been reported for Dovobet, tell your doctor immediately if you experience and of the following: 
  • Worsening of your psoriasis (may affect up to 1 in 100 people); 
  • Pustular psoriasis  - a red area with yellow pustules, usually on the hands or feet (may affect up to 1 in 1,000 people. 
  • Some serious side effects are caused by betamethasone, a strong steroid that is one of the ingredients in Dovobet. 

These side effects are more likely to occur if you are using Dovobet long-term, in skin-folds (armpits, groin, under breasts etc.), under a dressing or on large areas of skin. 

  • Cataracts – look out for cloudy vision, light sensitivity, difficulty seeing at night and an increase in pressure inside the eye; 
  • Pustular psoriasis  - a red area with yellow pustules, usually on the hands or feet; 
  • Infections – your immune system may be weakened; 
  • Problems with your adrenal glands – signs are tiredness, depression and anxiety; 
  • Impact on the metabolic control of diabetes mellitus (fluctuations in blood glucose levels in diabetics). 

Some serious side effects are caused by calcipotriol another active ingredient in Dovobet. 

  • Allergic reactions – swelling of the face and other parts of the body, mouth/throat, difficulty breathing. 

Seek immediate medical assistance if you are having an allergic reaction. 

  • An increased calcium level in the blood – signs include constipation, muscle weakness, confusion and coma.  

Contact your doctor as this can be serious. 

Less serious side effects 

Common side effects (affect up to 1 in 10 people): 

•Skin exfoliation; 

•Itching. 

Uncommon side effects (affect up to 1 in 100 people): 

  • Rash with inflammation; 
  • Inflammation or swelling of the hair root; 
  • Skin pain or irritation; 
  • Rash; 
  • Burning sensation; 
  • Changes in skin colour on the area you have used the ointment/gel; 
  • Skin infection; 
  • Thinning of the skin; 
  • Red or purple discolouration of the skin. 

Rare side effects (affect up to 1 in 1,000 people): 

  • Allergic reactions; 
  • Hypercalcaemia; 
  • Stretch marks; 
  • Bacterial or fungal infection of the hair follicle; 
  • Photosensitivity of the skin; 
  • Acne
  • Dry skin; 
  • Worsening psoriasis after treatment has finished (rebound effect). 

Less serious side effects caused by betamethasone, especially when using over a long period of time: 

  • Appearance of surface blood vessels or stretch marks; 
  • Changes in hair growth; 
  • Thinning of the skin; 
  • Red rash around the mouth; 
  • Golden coloured gel-filled bumps; 
  • Lightening of the skin; 
  • Swelling of the hair root. 

Less serious side effects caused by calcipotriol: 

  • Sensitivity to light; 
  • Eczema
  • Dry skin; 
  • Irritation; 
  • Burning sensation; 
  • Red skin; 
  • Rashes; 
  • Worsening psoriasis. 

When shouldn’t you use Dovobet? 

Do not use Dovobet if any of the following apply: 

  • You are allergic to calcipotriol, betamethasone or any of the other ingredients listed on the packet; 
  • You have problems with calcium levels in the body; 
  • You have erythrodermic, exfoliative or pustular psoriasis. 

Dovobet contains a strong steroid so should not be used on skin with any of the following: 

  • Skin infections caused by viruses, fungus, bacteria or parasites; 
  • Tuberculosis; 
  • Acne; 
  • Rosacea
  • Ulcers or broken skin; 
  • Dry skin with fish-like scales (ichthyosis); 
  • Red rash around the mouth (perioral dermatitis). 

Does Dovobet interact with other medications? 

Always talk to your doctor about any other medicines you are taking or have recently taken as they may interfere with Dovobet. In particular, if you are using other medicines that contain corticosteroids as you may get side effects. 

Where can you buy Dovobet? 

You can buy Dovobet from any pharmacy opt for the one that’s most convenient for you, whether that’s an online pharmacy that offers home delivery or your local pharmacy. 

Can I get Dovobet without a prescription? 

No, you will need a prescription to buy Dovobet ointment or gel. You’re doctor will need to confirm the diagnosis before you arrange an online consultation. 

Sources 

Leo Laboratories Ltd (2018). [online] Medicines.org.uk. Available at: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/files/pil.1609.pdf [Accessed 9 Jan. 2020]. 

Leo Pharma (2017). [online] Drugs.com. Available at: https://www.drugs.com/uk/pdf/leaflet/1078826.pdf [Accessed 10 Jan. 2020]. 

NHS UK (2018). Psoriasis. [online] nhs.uk. Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Psoriasis/ [Accessed 9 Jan. 2020]. 

NICE Excellence (2020). CALCIPOTRIOL WITH BETAMETHASONE | Drug | BNF content published by NICE. [online] Bnf.nice.org.uk. Available at: https://bnf.nice.org.uk/drug/calcipotriol-with-betamethasone.html [Accessed 9 Jan. 2020]. 

Psoriasis Association (2017). Psoriasis & Treatments - Psoriasis Association. [online] Psoriasis Association. Available at: https://www.psoriasis-association.org.uk/psoriasis-and-treatments/ [Accessed 9 Jan. 2020]. 

Assessed by:

Dr Imran Malik, General practitioner
Registration number: GMC: 4741365

Dr Imran Malik studied undergraduate medicine at King's College University in Central London and clinical studies at the prestigious King's College Hospital. He graduated with a MBBS degree in 2000 and went on to gain postgraduate memberships with the Royal Society of Medicine and also General Practice in 2006.