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Generic name Topical name: coal tar [KOL-TARTOP-ik’al]
Brand trademarks: Anti-Dandruff, Balnetar, Coal Tar, DHS Tar Shampoo, Ionil T,… display all 23 brands
The class of drug: miscellaneous topical agents

What is Anti-Dandruff ?

Coal tar is a byproduct of coal processing.Anti-dandruff (for the skin) is a treatment for the symptoms of skin that are associated with psoriasis, which include dryness and flaking. It also treats redness as well as scaling and itching. Coal tar isn't an effective treatment for psoriasis, and it can only provide temporary relief from skin conditions.Coal tar could be used for other purposes that are not covered in this guide to medication.

Side effects of Anti-Dandruff

See a doctor immediately. If you are experiencing symptoms that indicate an allergic reaction, such as difficulty breathing, hives, or swelling of your lips, face, and throat,

Anti-dandruff may cause serious side effects. Stop taking anti-dandruff and contact your doctor immediately if you suffer from:

  • Extreme burning, stinging swelling, or symptoms of irritation to the skin.

Common side effects could include minor skin irritations or itching.This isn't a complete list of possible side effects, and other effects may also be experienced. Contact your doctor for advice regarding medical adverse effects. Please call 1-800-FDA-1088 if any adverse reactions arise and report it immediately to them.


Follow the directions on the label of your medication and on the label of your package. Inform your health care providers about your medical ailments and allergies, as well as any medications you take.

Before you take this drug

It is not recommended to apply anti-dandruff if you have an allergy to tar from coal.

Speak with a pharmacist or doctor about whether it's safe to take this medication in the event of other medical issues, particularly:

  • If you're allergic to any of the drugs you are allergic to,
  • If you're receiving UV radiation treatment to treat your psoriasis,

The coal tar products you purchase might contain lanolin, mineral oil, or other emulsifiers. Be sure to check the label of the coal tar product you're using. Consult your physician prior to taking coal tar if you have an allergy to one of the components.Consult a physician before taking this medicine if you are nursing or pregnant.Do not let a small child take this medicine without supervision from an adult.

How to take Anti-Dandruff ?

Take exactly as indicated on the label or as recommended by your physician. Don't use in greater than smaller quantities or for longer than is recommended.Apply coal tar cream, lotion, ointment, or solution in accordance with the instructions on the medication label. Certain types of coal tar can be applied one to four times a day.To make use of coal tar bath oil, add one to three capfuls in an icy bath prior to bathing. The oil may make the tub slippery. Make sure you are safe from falling.Shake the shampoo with coal tar well prior to use. Make sure you use enough shampoo to make an intense lather. Massage the shampoo on your scalp, and then wash it thoroughly. Apply the shampoo another time, and then leave it on your scalp for five minutes. Rinse thoroughly.Coal-tar shampoo can discolour blonde or coloured hair. Effects typically last several days.Don't use coal tar for treating large areas of skin. Don't use coal tar for prolonged periods without a doctor's approval.Certain forms of coal tar could cause stains on fabrics or other surfaces.Contact your doctor if symptoms do not improve or if your symptoms become worse after using anti-dandruff.Keep the medicine at room temperature, free of heat and moisture. Close the medicine when not in use.

What happens if I miss the dose?

Because anti-dandruff is only used when it is needed, you might not be following a dose schedule. If you're following a regimen, take the dose missed as soon as you recall. Do not take any missed doses if you are close to the time of the next dose. Do not attempt to replace any missed dose with additional medication.

What happens if I overdose?

A high dose of anti-dandruff is not likely to pose a risk. You should seek medical attention in an emergency or contact the poison help line at 1-800-222-1222 if you have accidentally swallowed the drug.

What should be avoided?

Do not take coal tar in conjunction with other psoriasis treatments unless your physician has told you to.Beware of getting anti-dandruff around your eyes. If it does happen, then rinse your eyes with water.Do not apply coal tar to treat the skin on your groyne or rectal region.Avoid exposure to artificial UV radiation (sunlamps and tanning beds). Coal tar could cause your skin to become vulnerable to light. Sunburn can result.

Interaction with other drugs

It's not likely that any other drug you consume in the form of injectables or orals can affect coal tar applied topically. However, there are many drugs that interact with each other. Be sure to inform your health professionals about the medicines you use, which include prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, and herbs.