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Applies to minoxidil topical: topical foam, topical solution
Along with its needed effects, minoxidil topical may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur while taking minoxidil topical:
Signs and symptoms of too much medicine being absorbed into the body—Rare
For Healthcare Professionals
Applies to minoxidil topical: topical foam, topical solutionGeneral
Minoxidil topical is generally well tolerated. Dermatological adverse events are the only side effects reported more commonly as compared to placebo.Cardiovascular
Edema, salt and water retention, pericardial effusion, pericarditis, tamponade, tachycardia, and angina have been reported with oral minoxidil. Patients with underlying heart disease may be at increased risk for these or other cardiovascular adverse effects.
Rarely, cardiovascular side effects have included edema, chest pain, blood pressure changes, palpitations, and changes in pulse rate with minoxidil topical therapy.Local
Despite low levels of systemic absorption, in one study of 35 men using either topical minoxidil 2% twice a day or placebo for 6 months, minoxidil was associated with cardiac changes, such as significant increases in left ventricular end-diastolic volume, cardiac output, and left ventricular mass.
Systemic side effects are uncommon since very little minoxidil is absorbed after topical application. In one study, the serum levels after 2.5 mg twice a day oral versus 2% twice a day topical minoxidil were 32.8 and 1.7 ng per mL, respectively.
Exacerbation of hair loss/alopecia has been reported.Dermatologic
Rare cases of generalized hypertrichosis have been associated with topically applied minoxidil. Eczema, irritant dermatitis, and allergic contact dermatitis have also been reported.Hypersensitivity
Nonspecific allergic reactions, hives, allergic rhinitis, facial swelling, and sensitivity to minoxidil topical have rarely been reported.Nervous system
Headache, dizziness, faintness, and light-headedness have been reported with minoxidil topical.Gastrointestinal
Diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting have been reported during treatment with minoxidil topical.Ocular
Visual disturbances, including decreased visual acuity, have been reported.