Efudex or Aldara on Skin Cysts - Would It Be Safe and Would It Work?

I have a dermatofibroma on my arm that I would like to get rid of and wondered whether this treatment would work (without the scarring). I know my mother has used it on basal cell carcinoma and I have been checked the lesions are not pre cancerous. Is this a viable treatment option. Just would like an objective opinion.

Doctor Answers 1

Cysts and dermatofibromas are not treated with either effudex or Aldara

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Effudex is a topical preparation of a chemotherapy drug, fluorouracil.  The way Effudex is believed to work is that abnormal cells (precancerous or cancerous) multiply faster than normal cells and they pick up the fluorouracil faster.  Once inside the fluorouracil damages the cell.

Aldara works by recruiting the immune system cells to destroy abnormal cells in the skin, either precancerous or cancerous ones, or ones infected with HPV.

Dermatofibromas are benign skin lesions that are located usually in the upper two layers of the skin, the epidermis and dermis, although they can extend all the way to the subcutaneous fat.  Their cells multiply slowly, so Effudex would not be effective, and the normal surrounding skin cells would be damaged as well.

Since the dermatofibroma cells are normal, applying Aldara which helps destroy abnormal cells, would not be effective here either, and would just serve to irritated the dermatofibroma and the surrounding skin.

Short Hills Dermatologic Surgeon

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