Antibiotics Home > More Details on Retapamulin

What Should I Do If I Miss a Dose of Retapamulin?

If you forget to take your dose, apply it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for the next dose, simply skip the one you missed and continue with your regular schedule. Do not use a double dose.

How Does It Work?

Retapamulin works by inhibiting part of bacterial ribosomes, which are parts of cells that make proteins necessary for the bacteria to grow and multiply. The medication specifically inhibits the 50S subunit of the ribosome. Because human cells do not have a 50S subunit, they are spared from the effects of the antibiotic.
Retapamulin works in a different way than other antibiotics that inhibit the 50S subunit, which means it is in a class by itself. In fact, it is the first in a new class of medications known as pleuromutilin antibiotics.

When and How to Take This Medication

Some general considerations to keep in mind during treatment with retapamulin include the following:
  • Apply this medication in a thin layer twice a day for five days. Apply it only on the affected areas, as it should not be applied to a large area of the skin.
  • Do not swallow the ointment or apply it to the eyes, in the nose, on the mouth or lips, or other mucous membranes.
  • You may cover the treated area with a bandage or gauze, if desired. This may be especially helpful for young children to prevent them from licking the ointment or getting it in their eyes.
  • For retapamulin to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. Take it for the full length of time your healthcare provider recommends, even if you see improvement sooner.

How Should Retapamulin Be Stored?

Retapamulin should be stored at room temperature. Keep this and all medications out of the reach of children and pets.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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