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Mupirocin Prescription
Generic Name: mupirocin nasal (mue PIR oh sin)
Brand Name: Bactroban
Physician reviewed mupirocin nasal patient information - includes mupirocin nasal description, dosage and directions.

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Mupirocin Drug Information:

Mupirocin is an antibiotic that treats or prevents infection caused by bacteria. Mupirocin nasal (for use in the nose) is used to treat bacteria in the nostrils of patients and healthcare workers during an outbreak of severe staph infection within a hospital or other medical setting. This can help prevent the growth of staph bacteria in patients with a high risk of infection. Mupirocin nasal may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. Follow all directions on your medicine label and package. Tell each of your healthcare prOviders about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use. Learn more

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Mupirocin Side Effects

For the Consumer

Applies to mupirocin topical: topical cream, topical ointment

Other dosage forms:

  • nasal ointment

Along with its needed effects, mupirocin 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 immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking mupirocin topical:

Less common

  • Burning, stinging, or pain on the application site


  • Blistering, crusting, irritation, itching, or reddening of the skin
  • canker sores
  • cracked, dry, scaly skin
  • pain, swelling, tenderness, warmth on the skin
  • sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or tongue or inside the mouth

Incidence not known

  • Abdominal or stomach tenderness
  • cough
  • difficulty with swallowing
  • dizziness
  • fast heartbeat
  • fever
  • hives or welts, itching, or skin rash
  • large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • redness of the skin
  • severe abdominal or stomach cramps and pain
  • tightness in the chest
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • watery and severe diarrhea, which may also be bloody

Some side effects of mupirocin topical may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common

  • Headache
  • nausea

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to mupirocin topical: compounding powder, nasal ointment, topical cream, topical kit, topical ointment


Nasal Ointment: Cutaneous hypersensitivity reactions have been reported very rarely during postmarketing experience.

Topical Ointment: Cutaneous sensitization reactions to the active component or ointment base have been reported.

Nasal Ointment:

-Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Pruritus/itching

-Frequency not reported: Rash

-Postmarketing reports: Cutaneous hypersensitivity reactions

Topical Cream:

-Common (1% to 10%): Rash, pruritus, cutaneous hypersensitivity reactions

-Frequency not reported: Dry skin, erythema, cellulitis, dermatitis, hives

Topical Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Pruritus/itching, erythema, dry skin/dryness

-Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Contact dermatitis, furunculosis, exfoliative dermatitis, rash, cutaneous sensitization reactions


Frequency not reported: Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea

Nasal Ointment:

-Frequency not reported: Diarrhea, dry mouth, nausea

Topical Cream:

-Common (1% to 10%): Diarrhea, nausea

-Frequency not reported: Abdominal pain, ulcerative stomatitis

Topical Ointment:

-Frequency not reported: Nausea


Postmarketing reports: Systemic allergic reactions (e.g., anaphylaxis, generalized rash, urticaria, angioedema)

Systemic allergic reactions have been reported during postmarketing experience very rarely.


Nasal Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Burning, irritation, tingling, itching, stinging, soreness, facial pain over maxillae

Topical Cream:

-Common (1% to 10%): Application site reactions, application site burning, application site hypersensitivity reactions (including urticaria, pruritus, erythema, burning sensation, contact dermatitis, rash)

Topical Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Burning, stinging, pain/swelling at application site, dryness, itching, erythema

-Frequency not reported: Increased exudate, application site reactions

Nervous system

Nasal Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Taste perversion, headache

Topical Cream:

-Common (1% to 10%): Headache

-Frequency not reported: Dizziness


Nasal Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Conjunctivitis

-Frequency not reported: Blepharitis, burning, tearing


Nasal Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Burning/stinging

-Frequency not reported: Ear pain

Topical Cream:

-Frequency not reported: Bleeding or pain secondary to eczema, secondary wound infection

Topical Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Burning/stinging/pain

-Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Systemic reactions (not otherwise specified)

-Frequency not reported: Tenderness, swelling, increased exudate


Nasal Ointment:

-Common (1% to 10%): Postnasal drip, sinusitis, rhinitis, respiratory disorder (including upper respiratory tract congestion), pharyngitis, cough

-Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Nasal mucosa reactions

-Frequency not reported: Epistaxis

Editorial References and Review

Medically reviewed by USARx EDITORIAL TEAM Last updated on 1/27/2021.

Source: Drugs.com Mupirocin (www.drugs.com/mtm/mupirocin-nasal.html).