Jublia Review: Does Prescription Antifungal Cream Work?

Jublia Review: Does Prescription Antifungal Cream Work?


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Disclaimer: None of the information in this article constitutes medical advice. All statements are merely the opinion of the writer(s). We recommend that patients follow their doctor’s guidance in regard to prescription antifungals.

Jublia is a prescription cream used to treat toenail fungus. The generic name for this medication is efinaconazole, and we'll use these terms interchangeably throughout this article because they refer to the same active drug ingredient.

But is Jublia shown in research studies to cure toenail fungus? Does the medication cause any side effects? How do real Jublia patients rate and describe the effects of the treatment? And is the generic version equally effective?

In this article we'll answer all of these questions and more, as we analyze clinical studies on Jublia to give our take on whether or not the medication is likely to be effective for the treatment of toenail fungus.

We'll document potential side effects, feature unsponsored patient reviews, and share our thoughts about whether or not the generic equivalent is a better purchase. 

Is Jublia Proven to Work?

Jublia has been studied in clinical trials for its effects on toenail fungus.

A clinical trial published in the Skin Therapy Letter found that after 24 months of use, over 74% of Jublia patients experienced a cure of their toenail fungus.

Jublia has also been clinically shown to be effective in children.

After 52 weeks of use, 65% of children using Jublia once-daily were cured of their fungus in a 2021 clinical trial.

A medical review on Jublia's antifungal efficacy, published in the American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, concluded the following:

"Experts recommend [Jublia] 10% topical solution as the first line for mild-to-moderate onychomycosis, pediatric onychomycosis, those with liver or kidney disease, and as maintenance therapy to prevent relapse."

Onychomycosis is the medical term for nail fungus.

Based on the available research, we consider Jublia likely to be effective for the treatment of toenail fungus, which is unsurprising given that the medication is approved by the FDA for this outcome.

Does Jublia Cause Side Effects?

Jublia has the potential to cause side effects in a minority of patients.

The drug's FDA label documents the following side effects which occurred more than 1% of the time in clinical trials: ingrown toenails, dermatitis, vesicles, pain.

Dermatitis is the medical term for swelling and irritation of the skin, and vesicles is the medical term for a blister filled with fluid.

The good news about Jublia's FDA label is that it's free of a "black box" warning, which is the most severe level of warning issued by the FDA, and indicates potentially life-threatening side effects.

This suggests that Jublia is unlikely to cause serious side effects.

Patients Review Jublia

Drugs.com is a website that allows prescription medication patients to rate and review the drugs they're taking.

We cannot verify the accuracy or authenticity of any reviews on this site.

Jublia has been reviewed over 200 times on Drugs.com at the time of publishing this article, and currently has an average review rating of 5.6 out of 10.

The top positive review comes from a user named "Crystal" who gives the medication a 10/10 rating, and claims it was effective:

I have been using Julia for a year. 4 of 5 affected toes are healed and look completely normal. My big toe is 90%. I was very consistent using the product daily.

The top negative review is written by a user named "Infor..." who gives the medication a 1/10 rating, and claims it caused side effects:

"Saw my family doctor and was prescribed Jublia and soon after the refill of my first bottle I developed a SEVERE reaction - blistering, swelling, rash, and redness. I didn’t link the problem to Jublia but did discontinue use."

Is Jublia Generic a Better Choice?

We generally recommend that patients speak to their doctor about generic, rather than brand name, medications.

This is because generic medications have been clinically shown to be equivalently effective to brand-name medications in the aggregate, as we documented in our liraglutide review article, and can be significantly cheaper.

However, at the time of publishing this article, generic efinaconazole is not available in the US according to GoodRx.

Given that a generic version of Jublia has been approved by the FDA according to Drugs.com, a commercially available generic may emerge in the US soon.

We'd recommend that patients prescribed Jublia regularly check in with their doctor about the availability of a generic alternative.

How Do You Prevent Toenail Fungus?

As we documented in our Fungus Eliminator reviews article, it's important to be proactive about preventing toenail fungus from re-ocurring after it's treated.

A video from the American Academy of Dermatology is under 3 minutes long and includes six tips on preventing toenail fungus:

Our Clean Antifungal Picks

Bulletproof MCT Oil is our top oral anti-fungal pick.

Medium chain triglyceride (MCT) oil was shown in a clinical trial published in the Nutrients journal to be a "therapeutic intervention for reducing fungal colonization."

Momentous Vitamin D3 is our top vitamin anti-fungal pick.

A medical review published in the Current Medical Mycology journal found that vitamin D3 had antifungal activity against Candida species (a pervasive fungal pathogen) and also inhibited biofilm formation.

Dr. Bronner's Organic Coconut Oil is our topical anti-fungal pick.

A medical review concluded that "coconut oil should be used in the treatment of fungal infections in view of emerging drug-resistant Candida species."

We're not suggesting that either of these products should be used to treat any disease or health condition, or that they're as effective as any FDA-approved medication.

Both of the products recommended in this section are entirely free of ingredients we consider to be unhealthy.

Stay up-to-date on our research reviews

Conclusion

Jublia has been proven effective as a topical antifungal in multiple clinical trials.

Early research on this medication is impressive: in some studies, Jublia cured toenail fungus in over 70% of trial participants.

Jublia may cause mild side effects in some patients, including redness and irritation. The drug does not appear to confer the risk of severe side effects.

While generic Jublia has been approved by the FDA, we can't find evidence that a generic Jublia exists in the US market. We recommend that patients prescribed Jublia ask their doctor about the availability of a generic alternative.

In this article we featured a video from a prominent healthcare association with tips on preventing toenail fungus, which may be useful for patients who successfully treat their toenail fungus with Jublia, and want to prevent it from re-occurring.