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Calcineurin inhibitors block the chemical calcineurin. This chemical ‘switches on’ inflammation in the skin; causing redness and itching.
Calcineurin inhibitors are licensed for atopic eczema, but are sometimes used ‘off licence’ in other inflammatory skin conditions, such as psoriasis, because of their ability to reduce inflammation.
Calcineurin inhibitors do a similar job to topical steroids (reduce inflammation), but don’t have the same side effects, meaning they may be more appropriate for longer-term use, or in sensitive areas. Two commonly prescribed calcineurin inhibitors are Protopic and Elidel.
These are only available on prescription – ask your doctor for more information.