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Fungal Infections: Risks of Oral Antifungals

Topic Overview

Before you decide to take an oral antifungal medicine to treat a fungal infection such as athlete's foot or a fungal nail infection, you and your doctor will want to consider the possible risks. Depending on the medicine and your risk factors, some antifungal medicines may:

  • Affect liver or kidney function.
  • Cause liver damage or failure, particularly when combined with alcohol or certain medicines.
  • Weaken the heart's ability to contract, leading to heart failure.
  • Cause dangerous side effects when combined with many different common medicines.

During oral antifungal treatment, your doctor may require blood tests to check your kidney and liver function.

Possible mild side effects caused by antifungal medicines include stomach upset, headaches, and skin rash.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Patrice Burgess, MD - Family Medicine
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Last Revised June 27, 2012

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