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Generic Name: Capsaicin topical [kap-SAY-sin-TOP-i-kal]
Brand names include: Aspercreme Warming Cream for Pain Relief, Capzasin for the Back and Body, Capzasin-HP, Capzasin-P Castiva Warming,… Show the 17 brands.
Classification of Drugs: Miscellaneous topical agents

What is Zostrix?

Capsaicin is the main ingredient in chili peppers, which makes them hot. Capsaicin can be found in medicated lotions and creams that alleviate muscle or joint pain.Capsaicin that is applied to the body creates a sensation of warmth that stimulates nerve cells. When you regularly use capsaicin, this heating effect can reduce the quantity of the substance P, which functions as a pain spokesman in the body.

Zostrix can be used to provide temporary relief from joint or muscle pain that is due to injuries, strains, arthritis, or bruising. Backaches. The medicine can also be utilized in the treatment of the pain of the nerves (neuralgia) in those who have herpes zoster, also known as "shingles."

Qutenza is a prescription-strength form of capsaicin topical that is applied by a healthcare professional. The drug is employed to relieve herpes-related nerve pain as well as foot pain caused by nerves (peripheral neuropathy) in patients with diabetes.Zostrix could also be used to accomplish other tasks not covered in the Zostrix guide.

Side effects of Zostrix

Contact a medical professional immediately in the event that you exhibit warning signs of an allergic reaction, such as symptoms of hives, breathing difficulties, and swelling of your lips, face, and tongue.

Cleanse the skin and seek medical attention as soon as there is extreme pain, burning swelling, blisters, or pain on the area of your skin where you sprayed this medication.

Zostrix could cause serious adverse effects. Stop taking Zostrix and contact your doctor immediately if you experience:

  • Intense pain or skin redness when the medicine was sprayed;
  • Loss of sensation;
  • Difficulties breathing or difficulty swallowing (after the accidental breathing inhalation of the odor of capsaicin or dried remnants).

Common side effects can include a burning or pain sensation that may last for a few hours or days (especially the first time you make use of the topical capsaicin).

The following isn't an exhaustive list of the possible reactions, as other consequences could also occur. Consult your physician to seek medical advice on adverse effects. You can report adverse reactions to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Similar or related drugs

Gabapentin, aspirin, acetaminophen, tramadol, duloxetine, naproxen, and oxycodone


Avoid using Zostrix in the event that you are sensitive to chili peppers or if you've ever suffered allergies to Zostrix.

Capsaicin may produce a burning sensation where it is placed. If you experience extreme discomfort or redness on your skin, you should wash the affected surface with soap and cool water.Take medical attention immediately if you experience intense burning, pain, swelling, blistering, or swelling on the skin area where you have applied this medication.

Before you take this drug

Avoid using this medication in the event that you are allergic to chili peppers or if you've ever experienced reactions to Zostrix.

Inform your doctor if you have ever suffered from:

  • Or other reactions (especially any allergies)
  • An illness that is serious medically.

Talk to your doctor before taking this medicine if you are breastfeeding or pregnant.

Don't apply Zostrix to your breasts when nursing a child.Do not take this medication for anyone who is younger than 18 years old without the guidance of a physician.

How to take Zostrix?

Follow the directions on the label or as recommended by your physician. The Qutenza brand of capsaicin can only be used by a medical specialist and is not sold on the market.Do not chew it. The topical medication is intended for use only on the skin.Capsaicin comes in various forms, including cream, lotion, liquid, and a patch for the skin. Take note of and adhere to any instructions that are included in your medication. Talk to your pharmacist or doctor for clarification if you are unsure of the instructions.

Do not apply Zostrix to wounds that are open or to sunburned, windburned, chapped, dry, or inflamed skin. If this medicine is absorbed into your nose, eyes, mouth, rectum, or vagina, wash it off with water.Make sure that your skin is dry and clean prior to applying Zostrix.Cleanse your hands using soap and water as soon as you finish applying Zostrix or removing the topical skin patch. If you've applied the medication to your fingers or hands to alleviate the pain in those locations, wait at least 30 minutes prior to taking your hand off.

To avoid getting this medication on your fingers, use an elastic glove, a cotton ball, a finger cot, or clean tissue to apply the medication.Capsaicin may produce a stinging sensation anywhere it's applied. Even if it is placed on a different surface than your skin, you could feel burning when you contact the area. This is generally slight and should diminish in time as you continue to use the drug.

In the event that burning feels uncomfortable or causes extreme discomfort, clean the affected skin by using soap and cool water. See a doctor immediately if you experience extreme pain, burning, or swelling.Do not cover your areas with bandages or a heating pad, as it may intensify the burning. It is possible to protect the skin by covering it with clothes.Do not bathe or shower for a minimum of 1 hour prior to or following the time you apply capsaicin to your skin. Avoid swimming and hard exercises. Perspiration and warm water may cause a burning sensation that is due to capsaicin.

Do not get Zostrix in your eye or near your nose, where you could breathe it in. If it gets into one of these places, clean it thoroughly with water.Avoid getting this medication on your dentures, contact lenses, or other objects that come into contact with delicate areas of your body.

It could take between 2 and 2 weeks of taking this medication regularly before symptoms begin to improve. To achieve the best results, you should continue taking the medication as prescribed. The relief from pain should come gradually because the P substance in your body is reduced within the nerve cells.

Contact your physician if your discomfort does not ease after taking this medication for seven days or if your symptoms become worse or improve, after which you return after a couple of days.Keep Zostrix within the room at a temperature far from heat and moisture and in a safe place where pets and children cannot access it.Zostrix liquid is inflammable. Avoid storing or using it close to open flames or near a fire.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose immediately after you recall it. Don't take your missed dose if you are close to the time of the next dose. Don't apply capsaicin more than four times within one day or take additional medicine to replace the missed dose.

An unintentional dose of Zostrix is not harmful; however, it could make the medication less effective in reducing substance P and relieving discomfort.

What happens if I overdose?

Get medical attention immediately or contact the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222, particularly if someone has accidentally swallowed the poison.

The accidental swallowing of capsaicin may result in severe burning near the mouth. Irritated eyes, running nose, difficulties breathing or swallowinginjecting excessive amounts of Zostrix into the skin could cause intense redness or burning.

What should be avoided?

Beware of inhaling the smell or the dried traces of topical capsaicin. When you inhale capsaicin, it can trigger the symptoms of sneezing, coughing, or irritated eyes. May cause irritation to your throat and lungs.

Avoid touching your mouth, eyes, nose, genitals, or rectum until the medication has been removed from your hands. Avoid handling food items when the medication is in your hands.Avoid exposing the treated skin to sunlamps, sunlight, tanning beds, or the hot tub. Capsaicin could create a burning feeling, which can be aggravated by temperatures.

Do not apply any other medicated skin care products, like muscle pain lotions or creams, to the areas where you've applied capsaicin unless a doctor has instructed you to.

Interaction with other drugs

It's not likely that other drugs you consume by mouth or inject will affect capsaicin applied topically. But there are many drugs that interact with each other. Inform your health care professionals about the medicines you use, such as prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and herbs.