Dermatology Handbook

The professional's guide to product selection

Coal tar


Cocois is a combination of coal tar, salicylic acid and sulphur, which are widely used in the treatment of hyperkeratotic and scaling skin conditions. Coal tar is antipruritic, keratoplastic and a weak antiseptic. Salicylic acid has keratolytic properties. Sulphur is keratolytic, with weak antiseptic and parasiticide properties

Exorex Lotion 5% v/w Cutaneous Emulsion

Exorex Lotion contains coal tar, an antipruritic and keratoplastic. It is a patented formulation containing the active ingredient coal tar solution (5% v/w) in a base containing a complex of esterified essential fatty acids. Tar acids have also been shown to have disinfectant properties. Exorex Lotion may be used alone, or as part of a more extensive treatment regimen

Psoriderm Cream

Psoriderm Cream is a coal tar preparation. Coal tar has been used dermatologically for hundreds of years and has been shown to be safe and effective in the treatment of scaly skin conditions such as psoriasis. The precise mechanism of action of coal tar is not understood, largely as a result of it comprising up to 10,000 components. There is evidence that topical application of coal tar improves psoriasis by reducing the excessive rate of mitotic epidermal cell division.



An ointment containing coal tar solution 12% w/w, salicylic acid 2% w/w and sulfur for external use 4% w/w in a coconut oil base. The mixture of coal tar, salicylic acid and sulfur reduces itch, helps remove scaly skin and has antiseptic properties. Sebco is used in the treatment of skin diseases which cause dry scaly skin on the scalp. These include psoriasis, eczema, seborrhoeic dermatitis and dandruff. It has mild antipruritic, antiseptic and keratolytic properties and is based on an ointment called Unguentum Cocois Co.