Nystatin: effective against fungal infections

The active substance Nystatin belongs to the antimycotics, the substances for the treatment of fungal infections. Nystatin is used because of its properties for the treatment of external skin and mucosal infections, as well as fungal infections of the intestinal tract. The active ingredient impairs the cell wall structure of fungi by forming pores, thus rendering them permeable. It inhibits the proliferation of fungi and can kill them at high doses.

Effect of Nystatin

Nystatin was the first anti-fungal substance to be isolated in 1948 in New York. It is a natural product of the bacterium Streptomyces noursei and is especially effective against the Candida yeast. Candida fungi are found in three quarters of all people on the skin, mucous membranes and in the gastrointestinal tract. They become potentially ill only under certain conditions, such as weakening the immune system or taking antibiotics (especially vaginal fungi).

If a fungal infection develops, a thorough treatment is required. Nystatin is effective in many places in the body. For example, it is not absorbed in the intestine and can therefore be used to locally fight infections throughout the gastrointestinal tract.

Nystatin can also be used to treat infections of the skin and mucous membranes. Especially with a fungal infection in the intestine, the simultaneous treatment of the oral and pharyngeal mucosa is recommended. In addition, Nystatin is used to treat fungal infections of the skin, vagina and anus. Nystatin products can be used against diaper rash in infants and toddlers.

In AIDS patients, the drug is used prophylactically against yeast infections.

Nystatin: Application and Dosage Forms

Depending on the area of ​​application, nystatin preparations are offered in different dosage forms.

  • In the form of coated tablets and dragees, Nystatin is used to treat fungal infections of the intestine.
  • As an ointment, cream or paste, the active ingredient is used against infections of the skin. These can be fungal infections of the hands or feet, athlete's foot, infections of the nail edge as well as larger areas of the skin. In the anus and genital area nystatin may be used, but it must not reach the mucous membranes.
  • As a suspension or gel it is used against yeasts in the mouth and throat.
  • For the treatment of vaginal yeast infection, Nystatin is used as a vaginal cream for use on the external genital area and a vaginal tablet for vaginal insertion.

Nystatin preparations are usually found over the counter at the pharmacy. A visit to the doctor to determine the infection and especially to determine the pathogen is still recommended.

Dosage of Nystatin

Depending on the area of ​​application and preparation, the dosage of nystatin varies. It is important to consistently carry out any treatment of a fungal infection in order to achieve better results. In addition, you should continue taking at least two days after symptoms have resolved. Always talk to your doctor or pharmacist about the exact dosage and take a look at the package leaflet.

  • One nystatin tablet should be taken three times daily with sufficient fluid. The duration of the therapy is two to three weeks depending on severity.
  • Ointments, creams and pastes are applied to the affected areas two to four times a day. In babies, it is advisable to apply the drug up to four times a day before wrapping.
  • One to two milliliters of the gel or suspension are usually taken two to four times daily after the meal. It is recommended to keep the preparation in the mouth for a few minutes before swallowing it. The duration of therapy is between two and four weeks, depending on the infection.
  • The nystatin vaginal tablets are inserted into the vagina one to two vaginal tablets once or twice daily. Depending on the severity of the infection, the duration of therapy is between three days and two weeks. The treatment can be additionally supported by the application of a vaginal cream in the outer genital area. The cream is applied twice a day for the duration of the therapy. The anal area must not be left out.

Side effects of Nystatin

Nystatin is generally considered to be well tolerated. Nevertheless, side effects can occur in rare cases. Especially when taking tablets for the treatment of intestinal yeast infections can cause gastrointestinal discomfort such as nausea, nausea and diarrhea. Likewise, allergic reactions may occur. External use of nystatin preparations and vaginal tablets may also cause itching, redness and burning sensation.


In case of hypersensitivity to nystatin you should not use the preparations. During pregnancy and breast-feeding Nystatin should only be used after consultation with the doctor.

By treating a fungal infection in the genital and anal area with nystatin (as well as with all antimycotics), the tensile strength of condoms can be impaired.

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