What are antifungals and Their uses?
Antifungals can be used to treat infections that are caused by fungus. Antifungals remove the pathogen from the host body. Antifungal drugs differ from antibiotics, which are used to treat bacteria. Antibiotics don’t kill fungus, although they do kill other germs (called bacteria). Using antibiotics increases your chances of contracting a fungal infection. Many women, for example, develop thrush after taking antibiotics. This is because the antibiotic may destroy the typical, innocuous bacteria that dwell on your skin or in your vaginal canal, allowing fungi to thrive.
Antifungal drugs are mainly used to treat superficial skin infections such as athlete’s foot, nail fungus, ringworm, and ajock itch caused by dermatophytes (a type of fungi). They are also used to prevent candidiasis in people who have weakened immune systems; cryptococcal meningitis in people with HIV/ AIDS; and vaginal yeast infections. Some antifungals may be taken orally while others need to be applied directly to your skin or nails for treatment. It is important to remember that some types of fungus can also infect internal organs and should not be taken lightly Source
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Some commonly used antifungals
Antifungals come in wide varieties and types although some commonly used antifungals are fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, clotrimazole, econazole, miconazole, terbinafine, and amphotericin. All of these drugs work by inhibiting the synthesis of ergosterol and other sterols found in the cell membrane. The degree of inhibition can be variable depending on drug concentration and local pH. These agents may also affect cholesterol levels and sex hormones such as testosterone because they inhibit cytochrome P450-dependent enzymes that metabolize them for elimination from the body.
Side effects of antifungals
Antifungal medicines will not cure the infection but they will help to clear up symptoms of fungal nails. The most common side effect is a skin rash or irritation that occurs at the site of application on your skin. This may happen if you use an anti-fungal cream that contains miconazole nitrate, clotrimazole, econazole nitrate, erythromycin, and ketoconazole. Other possible side effects include headache, nausea, and vomiting. Side severe side effects include allergic reactions (skin rash), liver damage, hearing loss or ringing in ears (tinnitus), and toxicity to bone marrow cells. Creams, sprays, liquids, and shampoos have antifungal medication added to them. These are normally free of negative effects and simple to use. Some patients may experience itchiness, burning, or redness where the antifungal medication has been applied.
How do Antifungals Work?
Antifungal medications can function in one of two ways: they can kill fungal cells directly or they can inhibit fungal cells from developing and prospering. For example, the main working principle of antifungals is to disrupt fungal cell membranes, which leads to leakage of cellular contents such as proteins and nucleic acids. This ultimately causes death or inhibition of the fungus’ growth. Antifungals can be classified into six groups based on their mechanism: azoles, allylamines, echinocandins, polyenes, monoterpenes, and dyes.
Dosage strength and strength of antifungals.
Antifungal medications are available in the following forms: Lotion, a gel, an ointment, or a spray, Pill, a tablet, or a liquid Infusion, soft tablet that is inserted into the vaginal canal.
- 2mg/ml contains 2mg Fluconazole per ml injectable solution.
- 10mg/ml contains 10mg Fluconazole per ml oral suspension.
- 40mg/ml contains 40mg Fluconazole per ml oral suspension.
- 50mg tablet contains 50mg Fluconazole per tablet.
- 100mg tablet contains 100mg Fluconazole per tablet.
- 150mg tablet contains 150mg Fluconazole per tablet
- 200mg tablet contains 200mg Fluconazole per tablet.
- 200mg tablet contains 200mg itraconazole per tablet.
- 10mg/ml contains 10mg itraconazole per ml oral suspension.
- 65mg capsule contains 50mg itraconazole per capsule.
- 100mg capsule contains 50mg itraconazole per capsule.
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