Metronidazole in the Treatment of Rosacea: Do Formulation, Dosing, and Concentration Matter?

April 2006 | Volume 5 | Issue 4 | Original Article | 317 | Copyright © April 2006

Jane Yoo BS MPP, David C. Reid BA, Alexa B. Kimball MD MPH

Background: Topical metronidazole is commonly used in the management of rosacea. No consensus on the optimal formulation, concentration, or dosing regimen exists.

Purpose: To assess the relative efficacy of metronidazole cream, gel, and lotion at concentrations of 0.75% and 1%, in dosing regimens of once and twice daily.

Methods: A meta-analysis of published metronidazole efficacy rates was performed.
,br> Results: In non-weighted analysis, the mean efficacy was 28.2% (95% confidence interval [CI], 22.0%-34.4%) for the cream, 38.4% (95% CI, 18.4%-58.4%) for the gel, and 35% for the lotion. Confidence intervals for QD versus BID dosing and 0.75% versus 1% concentrations also overlapped. In weighted analysis, the mean reduction was 31.3% for the cream, 22.1% for the gel, and 35% for the lotion.
,br> Conclusions: Metronidazole cream, gel, and lotion vehicles have similar efficacies. There were no substantial differences between concentrations of 0.75% and 1%, or between once daily and twice daily regimens.