Doctors prescribe clindamycin phosphate to treat bacterial infections, most frequently acne and certain vaginal infections. The topical form of the medication treats acne, notes WebMD. Clindamycin phosphate vaginal cream 2% effectively treats bacterial vaginosis.
Topical clindamycin phosphate, often sold as Cleocin-T, fights the growth of bacteria and helps lessen the number of pimples. WebMD states that the medication is intended only for use on the skin. The site also notes that the medication takes from two to six weeks to begin working and up to 12 weeks to reach its full potential for treating the problem. Most side effects are temporary and skin-related, though occasionally an intestinal condition results from the medication absorbing into the blood stream. The condition sometimes does not appear until the medication is discontinued.
When used for vaginal infections, the clindamycin phosphate cream works similarly to stop the growth of bacteria. Doctors prescribe this form of the medication for vaginal use only. Some women experience intestinal issues as a side effect of the drug, and a few develop a fungal infection somewhere in the body. Pregnant women must make sure to notify their doctor of a pregnancy before using this drug, as alternative treatments need to be considered. Clindamycin is an effective drug for controlling and halting bacterial growth when used according to specific directions.