Skin-Lightening Creams Can Pose Unexpected Risks

Skin-Lightening Creams Can Pose Unexpected Risks

A dermatologist in Washington, D.C., was surprised to discover that one of her patients was using a powerful steroid cream bought without a prescription to treat a rash. Though steroids are often used to treat skin conditions, overuse can cause problems including skin atrophy, rosacea, acne, stretch marks, excessive hair growth and immune system reactions. It turns out that the patient and their family, who are from Africa, bought the cream, called Funbact-A, at a local store focused on African goods. It contained betamethasone, a high-strength steroid sold only by prescription in the U.S. Though high-dose steroids are often used...

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