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Home / Drugs / Starting with S / Selenium Sulfide
Selenium Sulfide

Selenium Sulfide is an antifungal agent as well as a cytostatic agent, slowing the growth of hyperproliferative cells in seborrhea. Selenium Sulfide is the active ingredient often used in shampoos for the treatment of dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis and tinea capitis, a fungal infection that is primarily a disease of preadolescent children.
Exsel Lotion Shampoo
Head & Shoulders Intensive Treatment 2 in 1 (Persistent Dandruff Shampoo plus Conditioner in One) Formula Dandruff Lotion Shampoo
Head & Shoulders Intensive Treatment Conditioning Formula Dandruff Lotion Shampoo
Head & Shoulders Intensive Treatment Regular Formula Dandruff Lotion Shampoo
Selenium(IV) sulfide
Selsun Blue
Selsun Blue Dry Formula
Selsun Blue Extra Conditioning Formula
Selsun Blue Extra Medicated Formula
Selsun Blue Oily Formula
Selsun Blue Regular Formula
Versel Lotion
CategoriesAntifungals for Topical Use
ManufacturersAllergan herbert div allergan inc
Actavis mid atlantic llc
Ivax pharmaceuticals inc
Perrigo new york inc
Taro pharmaceuticals usa inc
Wockhardt eu operations (swiss) ag
Chattem inc
PackagersAdvanced Pharmaceutical Services Inc.
Bioglan Pharmaceuticals Co.
Chattem Chemicals Inc.
DispenseXpress Inc.
Dispensing Solutions
Groupe Parima Inc.
Ide Interstate
Ivax Pharmaceuticals
Major Pharmaceuticals
Perrigo Co.
Physicians Total Care Inc.
Professional Co.
Quinnova Pharmaceuticals
River's Edge Pharmaceuticals
Sonar Products Inc.
Taro Pharmaceuticals USA
Wockhardt Ltd.
SynonymsSelenium Disulfide
Selenium sulfide red powder
Selenium sulphide


For treatment of tinea versicolor, tinea capitis, dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis of the scalp.


Selenium sulfide is an antifungal agent often used in shampoos for the treatment of dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis. Selenium sulfide is highly active in inhibiting the growth of P. ovale. It is also a proven cytostatic agent, slowing the growth of both hyperproliferative and normal cells in dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis. A 0.6% micronized form of selenium sulfide is also safe and effective for dandruff.

mechanism of action

Topical selenium sulfide may act by an antimitotic action, resulting in a reduction in the turnover of epidermal cells. It also has local irritant, antibacterial, and mild antifungal activity, which may contribute to its effectiveness. An antimitotic mechanism of action is suggested by data showing that selenium sulfide decreases the rate of incorporation of radioactively labeled thymidine into the DNA of dermal epithelial cells. The following organisms are generally considered susceptible to selenium sulfide in vitro: Malassezia furfur, Microsporum sp. including Microsporum audouinii and Microsporum canis, Pityrosporon sp., Trichophyton sp. including Trichophyton schoenleinii and Trichophyton tonsurans. Selenium sulfide has been shown to be sporicidal to T. tonsurans, the most common etiologic agent of tinea capitis. One in-vitro study demonstrated that 2.5% selenium sulfide was equivalent in sporicidal activity to both 1% and 2% zinc pyrithione.


No documented reports of serious toxicity in humans resulting from acute ingestion of selenium sulfide, however, acute toxicity studies in animals suggest that ingestion of large amounts could result in potential human toxicity.


There is no substantial absorption through intact skin. Absorption has been reported in patients with open lesions on the scalp or in patients using a 1% cream on the back - a patient with scalp lesions that used selenium shampoos had a level of selenium sulfide as high as 32 μg/ml in her urine.