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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Benoquin

Generic Name: monobenzone topical (Pronunciation: mon oh BEN zone TOP ik al)

What is monobenzone topical (Benoquin)?

Monobenzone is a depigmenting agent. It works by increasing elimination of melanin (pigment molecules) from skin cells.

Monobenzone topical (for the skin) is used to permanently lighten skin in people with vitiligo. Depigmenting darker skin around the areas of vitiligo helps even out coloring and appearance of the skin.

Monobenzone is not for treating freckles, café-au-lait spots, sun damage, melanoma, jaundice, or other pigmentation disorders not caused by vitiligo.

Monobenzone may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of monobenzone (Benoquin)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using monobenzone and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • severe skin irritation;
  • intense itching;
  • severe burning; or
  • redness or swelling of treated skin.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • dryness or flaking of treated skin; or
  • mild skin irritation.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about monobenzone topical (Benoquin)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to monobenzone. Do not use monobenzone on any areas that are not affected by vitiligo.

Monobenzone is not for treating freckles, café-au-lait spots, sun damage, melanoma, jaundice, or other pigmentation disorders not caused by vitiligo.

It may take up to 4 months to complete the depigmentation of treated skin. Keep using the medication as directed and tell your doctor if your condition does not improve after 1 month of treatment.

Skin treated with monobenzone may be especially sensitive to sunlight or irritation for the rest of your life.

Avoid exposure to sunlight or tanning beds. Monobenzone can make you sunburn more easily. Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) when you are outdoors.

Using monobenzone may also cause changes in the color of your untreated skin. Talk with your doctor if you have concerns about possible depigmentation of other skin areas not affected by vitiligo.



Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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