13.10.1 Antibacterial preparations Antibacterial preparations only use topically

  • Cream 2% (£5.26 = 15g)
  • Ointment 2% (£4.38 = 15g)


The use of topical antimicrobial agents has long been discouraged, on the grounds that it carries a particular risk of selecting resistance. However, some topical antibacterial use is strongly defensible, for example:

  • Use of sulphonamides with silver nitrate to prevent and treat burn wound infections
  • Use of mupirocin to eliminate colonisation and superficial infections caused by MRSA. Nevertheless, mupirocin can be misused e.g. by being given as blanket treatment or prophylaxis.
Silver sulfadiazine
  • Cream 1% (£3.85 = 50g)


  • Infected burns
  • Leg ulcers


  • Burns: Apply daily with a sterile applicator
  • Leg ulcers: Apply at least 3 times weekly Antibacterial preparations also used systemically

Fusidic acid
  • Cream 2% 15g, 30g (£3.08, £6.16)
  • Ointment 2% 15g, 30g (£3.08, £11.62)

Indications and dose




  1. Where a preferred brand is recommended for a particular presentation, prescribing by brand helps ensure cost-efficient use of local NHS resources (see preferred brand link above)


Home > Formulary > Chapters > 13. Skin > 13.10 Anti-infective skin preparations > 13.10.1 Antibacterial preparations


  • First line
  • Second line
  • Specialist
  • Hospital