Ketoconazole (Page 2 of 4)

8.2 Lactation

Risk Summary

There is no information available on the presence of ketoconazole in human milk, or the effects on the breastfed child, or the effects on milk production after topical application of ketoconazole foam, 2% to women who are breastfeeding. In animal studies ketoconazole was found in milk following oral administration. The developmental and health benefits of breastfeeding should be considered along with the mother’s clinical need for ketoconazole foam, 2% and any potential adverse effects on the breastfed infant from ketoconazole foam, 2% or from the underlying maternal condition.

8.3 Females and Males of Reproductive Potential


In animal fertility studies in rats and dogs, administration of oral doses of ketoconazole between 3-day and 3-month periods resulted in infertility that was reversible [see Nonclinical Toxicology (13.1)].

8.4 Pediatric Use

The safety and effectiveness of ketoconazole foam, 2% in pediatric patients less than 12 years of age have not been established.

Of the 672 subjects treated with ketoconazole foam, 2% in the clinical trials, 44 (7%) were from 12 to 17 years of age. [See Clinical Studies (14)].

8.5 Geriatric Use

Of the 672 subjects treated with ketoconazole foam, 2% in the clinical trials, 107 (16%) were 65 years and over.

Clinical trials of ketoconazole foam, 2% did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently than younger subjects.


Ketoconazole foam, 2% contains 2% ketoconazole USP, an antifungal agent, in a thermolabile hydroethanolic foam for topical application.

The chemical name for ketoconazole is piperazine, 1-acetyl-4-[4-[[2-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-2-(1H -imidazol-1-ylmethyl)-1,3-dioxolan-4-yl]methoxy]phenyl]-, cis — with the molecular formula C26 H28 Cl2 N4 O4 and a molecular weight of 531.43.

The following is the chemical structure:

chemical structure
(click image for full-size original)

Ketoconazole foam, 2% contains 20 mg ketoconazole per gram in a thermolabile hydroethanolic foam vehicle consisting of cetyl alcohol, citric acid, ethanol 58%, polysorbate 60, potassium citrate, propylene glycol, purified water, and stearyl alcohol pressurized with a hydrocarbon (propane/butane) propellant.


12.1 Mechanism of Action

The mechanism of action of ketoconazole in the treatment of seborrheic dermatitis is not known.

12.2 Pharmacodynamics

The pharmacodynamics of ketoconazole foam, 2% has not been established.

12.3 Pharmacokinetics

In a bioavailability study, 12 subjects with moderate to severe seborrheic dermatitis applied 3 g of ketoconazole foam, 2% twice daily for 4 weeks. Circulating plasma levels of ketoconazole were < 6 ng/mL for a majority of subjects (75%), with a maximum level of 11 ng/mL observed in one subject.

12.4 Microbiology

Ketoconazole is an antifungal agent which inhibits the in vitro synthesis of ergosterol, a key sterol in the cell membrane of Malassezia furfur. The clinical significance of antifungal activity in the treatment of seborrheic dermatitis is not known.


13.1 Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility

Long-term animal studies have not been performed to evaluate the carcinogenic or photo-carcinogenic potential of ketoconazole foam, 2%.

In oral carcinogenicity studies in mice (18-months) and rats (24-months) at dose levels of 5, 20 and 80 mg/kg/day ketoconazole was not carcinogenic. The high dose in these studies was approximately 2.4 to 4.8 times the MRHD based on BSA comparisons. In a bacterial reverse mutation assay, ketoconazole did not express any mutagenic potential. In three in vivo assays (sister chromatid exchange in humans, dominant lethal and micronucleus tests in mice), ketoconazole did not exhibit any genotoxic potential.

In animal fertility studies, oral ketoconazole impaired both male and female fertility in rats in a dose and duration dependent manner. In females, oral doses up to 40 mg/kg (2.4 times the MRHD based on BSA comparisons) had no effect on fertility, while doses of 75 mg/kg (4.5 times the MRHD based on BSA comparisons) and higher decreased the pregnancy rate and number of implantation sites. In male rats, oral dosing at 200 mg/kg/day (12 times the MRHD based on BSA comparisons) for three days decreased fertility and 400 mg/kg/day (24 times the MRHD based on BSA comparisons) for three days resulted in a complete loss of fertility. When administered for longer durations (up to 3 months), decreased fertility in male rats was observed at doses as low as 24 mg/kg/day (1.4 times the MRHD based on BSA comparisons). In male beagle dogs, an oral dose of 25 mg/kg/day ketoconazole for up to 4 weeks (5.2 times the MRHD based on BSA comparisons) resulted in decreased sperm motility, decreased sperm count, increased abnormal sperm and atrophy of the testes. These effects were reversed subsequent to withdrawal of treatment.


The safety and efficacy of ketoconazole foam, 2% were evaluated in a randomized, double-blind, vehicle-controlled trial in subjects 12 years and older with mild to severe seborrheic dermatitis. In the trial, 427 subjects received ketoconazole foam, 2% and 420 subjects received vehicle foam. Subjects applied ketoconazole foam, 2% or vehicle foam twice daily for 4 weeks to affected areas on the face, scalp, and/or chest. The overall disease severity in terms of erythema, scaling, and induration was assessed at Baseline and week 4 on a 5-point Investigator’s Static Global Assessment (ISGA) scale.

Treatment success was defined as achieving a Week 4 (end of treatment) ISGA score of 0 (clear) or 1 (majority of lesions have individual scores for scaling, erythema, and induration that averages 1 [minimal or faint]) and at least two grades of improvement from baseline. The results are presented in Table 2. The database was not large enough to assess whether there were differences in effects in age, gender, or race subgroups.

Table 2: Efficacy Results

Number of Subjects

Ketoconazole Foam, 2%

N = 427

n (%)

Vehicle Foam

N = 420

n (%)

Subjects Achieving Treatment Success

239 (56%)

176 (42%)


Ketoconazole Foam, 2% contains 20 mg of ketoconazole, USP per gram. The thermolabile hydroethanolic foam is available as follows:

NDC 45802-532-32

50 g aluminum can

NDC 45802-532-33

100 g aluminum can

Store at 20° to 25°C (68° to 77°F). [See USP Controlled Room Temperature.]

Do not store under refrigerated conditions.

Contents are flammable. Do not expose containers to heat and/or store at temperatures above 49°C (120°F). Do not store in direct sunlight.

Contents under pressure. Do not puncture and/or incinerate container.

Keep out of reach of children.

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