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Is it to safe to use Epilite?

Q: I am 7 months pregnant. I am using Epilite (with 5% hydroquinone) to get rid of hyperpigmentation. Is it safe to use? How long will it take to remeove these black pigmnetation marks around my mouth and eyes?

A:Hydroquinone (HQ) decreases the formation of melanin in the skin. Melanin is the pigment in skin that gives it a brown color. Hydroquinone topical is used to lighten areas of darkened skin such as freckles, age spots, cholasma, and melasma. Hydroquinone topical may also be used for purposes other than those listed above. While using HQ avoid exposure to sunlight or artificial UV rays (e.g., sunlamps). Darkening of the skin may occur with exposure to sunlight or artificial UV light. Use a sunscreen (minimum SPF 15) and wear protective clothing when exposure to the sun or UV rays is unavoidable. Do not use hydroquinone topical on skin that is sunburned, windburned, dry, chapped, or irritated, or on an open wound. It could make these conditions worse. Wait until these conditions have healed before applying hydroquinone topical. It is not known whether hydroquinone topical will be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not use hydroquinone topical without first talking to your doctor since you are pregnant.. It is not known whether hydroquinone will be harmful to a nursing baby. Do not use hydroquinone topical without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Apply the medication to clean, dry skin. Apply just enough medication to cover the affected area. Avoid application of the medication to unaffected, surrounding skin. Rub in the medication gently and completely. Do not apply hydroquinone topical to the eyes, lips, or inside of the nose or mouth. Accidental application of hydroquinone topical to the lips may cause numbness of the lips and/or a medicinal taste in the mouth. If the medication is accidentally applied to any of these areas, rinse with water. Seek medical advice if the medication gets in the eyes. It is important to use hydroquinone topical regularly to get the most benefit.Do not use hydroquinone topical with benzoyl peroxide, hydrogen peroxide, or other peroxide products. A temporary dark staining of the skin may occur. If hydroquinone topical is accidentally used with a product that contains peroxide, wash the skin with soap and water to remove the staining. Serious side effects are not likely to occur. Stop using hydroquinone topical and seek emergency medical attention or contact your doctor if you experience an allergic reaction (shortness of breath; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, face, or tongue; or hives); or a rash. More commonly, some burning, stinging, itching, redness, or irritation, of the treated area may be experienced. If these side effects are excessive, talk to your doctor. You may need a lower dose or less frequent application of hydroquinone topical. Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

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