Photosensitivity

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Photosensitivity is a common side effect of various medications. These can include certain antibiotics, chemotherapy drugs, and diuretics. If you are unsure about any medication, consult your healthcare provider.

Other substances not listed above can also cause photosensitivity.

Yellow warning triangle with exclamation point

Common examples of these substances are: St John’s Wort, coal tar, deodorants, antibacterial soaps, artificial sweeteners, naphthalene (mothballs), petroleum products, brightening agents found in laundry detergent, and cadmium sulphide (a chemical injected into the skin during tattooing).

The full list of drugs that can cause photosensitivity are detailed below.

 

 Drug Type

Specific Group or Common Name

Comments

Anti-Arthritic

Gold 50 or Ridaura

If YES, the treatment cannot be administered

Anti-Arthritic or Immuno-suppressant

Azathioprine (Imuran, Azasan)

  If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days.

Anti-Arrythmic

Amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone), Aratac Quinidine

  If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days. If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is a 10/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5 days then the treatment can be administered.

Antibiotics

Fluoroquinolones: Ciprofloxacin (Cipro), Levofloxacin (Levaquin), Lomefloxacin (Maxaquin),Norfloxacin (Noroxin), Ofloxacin (Floxin) Tetracyclines: Demeclocycline (Declomycin), Doxycycline (Vibramycin), Minocycline (Minocin), Oxytetracycline (Terramycin) Others: Azithromycin (Zithromax), Capreomycin (Capastat), Ceftazidime (Fortaz),cycloserine (Seromycin),Metronidazole (Flagyl), nalidixic acid (NegGram), pyrazinamide, sulfamethoxazole/ trimethoprim (Bactrim)

If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days.

Anti-Cancer

Bexarotene (Targretin), Capecitabine (Xeloda), Dacarbazine (DTIC), Epirubicin (Ellence), Fluorouracil (5-FU), Interferon alfa (Intron A, Alferon-N), Methotrexate (Mexate), Pentostatin (Nipent), Procarbazine (Matulane), Tretinoin, oral (Vesanoid), Vinblastine (Velban, Velbe)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is between a 1 /100 and 5/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5days then the treatment can be administered.

Anti-convulsants

Carbamazepine (Tegretol), Felbamate (Felbatol), Gabapentin (Neurontin), Lamotrigine (Lamictal), Oxcarbazepine (Trileptal), Topiramate (Topamax), Valproic acid (Depakene)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is a 1/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5 days then the treatment can be administered.

Antifungals

Flucytosine (Ancobon), Griseofulvin (Fulvicin, Gris-PEG), Terconazole (Terazol) Voriconazole (VFEND)

  If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days.

Antihistimines

Cetirizine (Zyrtec), Diphenhydramine (Benadryl), Loratadine (Claritin), Promethazine (Phenergan)

  If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days.

Anti-hypertensives

Captopril (Capoten), Diltiazem (Cardizem, Tiazac), Enalapril (Vasotec), Nifedipine (Procardia), Sotalol (Betapace)

  If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days.

Antimalarial

Chloroquine (Aralen), Hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil), Pyrimethamine (Daraprim),

  If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days

Antipsychotics

Phenothiazines: Chlorpromazine (Thorazine), Fluphenazine (Prolixin), Perphenazine (Trilafon), Prochlorperazine (Compazine), Thioridazine (Mellaril), Trifluoperazine (Stelazine)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is between a 2/100 and 3/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5days then the treatment can be administered.

Antiretroviral

Ritonavir (Norvir), Saquinavir (Fortovase,Invirase), Zalcitabine (Hivid)

  If YES, it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. If YES, it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is approximately a 2/100 chance of a light reaction.

Antiviral

Amantadine (Symmetrel), Acyclovir (Zovirax)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is approximately a 1/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5days then the treatment can be administered.

Cardiovascular

Thiazide diuretics: Bendroflumethiazide (Corzide), Chlorthalidone (Thalitone), Hydrochlorothiazide (Microzide), Hydroflumethiazide (Diucardin), Indapamide (Lozol), Methyclothiazide (Enduron), Metolazone (Zaroxolyn), Polythiazide (Renese) Diuretics, Other: Furosemide (Lasix), Triamterene (Dyrenium)

If YES, the treatment can be administered as long as the medication has not been taken within the last 5 days.

Lipid regulators Other

Fenofibrate (Tricor)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is a 10/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5days then the treatment can be administered.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDs) Analgesics

Diclofenac (Voltaren, Cataflam), Naproxen (Anaprox)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is a <1/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 1 day, then the treatment can be administered.

Sedatives

Alprazolam (Xanax), Chlordiazepoxide (Librium), Zaleplon (Sonata), Zolpidem (Ambien)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is a 1/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5 days then the treatment can be administered.

Skin agents (acne)

Isotretinoin (Accutane, Roaccutane) Tretinoin topical (Renova, Retin-A) Tazarotene (Tazorac)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is between a 5/100 and a 10/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5 days then the treatment can be administered.

Skin agents (hair)

  Coal tar, Minoxidil (Rogaine)

  If YES, and the client is currently on the medication it is at the discretion of the client as to whether they commence the treatment. There is <0.5/100 chance of a light reaction. If the client has stopped taking the medication for ≥ 5 days then the treatment can be administered.

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