Formulation and evaluation of fluconazole topical gel

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Fluconazole is an imidazole derivative used for the treatment of local and systemic fungal infection. The oral use of fluconazole is not recommended as it has many side effects. The present study was designed to formulate and evaluate different formulae of topical gel containing fluconazole for treatment of fungal infection of skin. The gel was formulated by using different polymers with different concentration as Carbopol 940, Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose E4M, Methyl cellulose, Pectin and Pluronic P407. Ten different formulae were prepared and characterized physically in term of color, syneresis, spreadability, pH, drug content and rheological properties. Drug-excipients compatibility studies were confirmed by carrying out DSC and FT-IR. In-vitro drug release in phosphate buffer pH 5.5 and permeation study through cellulose membrane, using a modified Franz diffusion cell, were performed. Candida albicans was used as a model fungus to evaluate the antifungal activity of the prepared formulae achieved using Nizoral® cream as control. The results of in vitro drug release and its permeation studies showed that the highest values was from F3(91.3% of drug released after 2 hr). Also F3 shows the highest antifungal activity. The rheological behavior of the prepared formulae showed shear-thinning flow indicating structural breakdown of the existing intermolecular interactions between polymeric chains. Moreover, the stability study revealed no significant difference between before and after storage for selected formula.

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