Fluconazole (Diflucan) for Yeast Infections

Candidiasis, also called thrush, is an yeast infection caused by the fungus Candida albicans.

Vaginal thrush

Vaginal thrush is characterized by itching and burning in the vagina, and a thick, white discharge that looks like cottage cheese.

Dosage for vaginal yeast infection: single 150 mg dose is usually effective. It can be repeated. Women with severe vulvovaginal candidiasis may benefit from two 150 mg doses given 3 days apart.

How long does it take for Fluconazole to work?
Generally, after taking a 150-mg dose of fluconazole the relief of vaginal discharge and itch starts on day 2 and complete relief is achieved at day 4. 3

Fluconazole versus Clotrimazole

In women with vaginal yeast infection, treatment with oral fluconazole 150 mg single dose as effective as 7-days intravaginal clotrimazole2.

Breast/nipple thrush

Proper treatment of breast or nipple thrush enables women to continue breastfeeding.

Although fluconazole is not licensed to be given during breastfeeding, it is licensed for use in babies in doses ten times higher than that which passes through breast milk, so is unlikely to produce problems. The World Health Organisation considers fluconazole as compatible with breastfeeding1.

Dosage for breast thrush: 150-300 mg as a loading dose followed by 100-200 mg daily for at least ten days. Fluconazole clears thrush generally in 3-5 days1.

Fluconazole is less likely to be effective if used alone and topical treatment of mother and baby is recommended.

Oral thrush

Oral thrush (oropharyngeal candidiasis) affects the mouth and tongue and often occurs in babies. Fluconazole may be used to treat oral thrush in the baby, but its use is recommended for infections which do not respond to topical therapy.

Dosage for oral thrush:

  • Adults: 200 mg first day, followed by 100 mg per day.
  • Children: 6 mg/kg on the first day, then 3 mg/kg once daily.

You may see results in a few days, but should continue fluconazole for at least 2 weeks to avoid a relapse.

See also:


  • 1. The Breastfeeding Network update 2009: PDF
  • 2. Sekhavat L, Tabatabaii A, Tezerjani FZ. Oral fluconazole 150 mg single dose versus intra-vaginal clotrimazole treatment of acute vulvovaginal candidiasis. J Infect Public Health. 2011 Sep;4(4):195-9. PubMed
  • 3. Phillips RJ, Watson SA, McKay FF. An open multicentre study of the efficacy and safety of a single dose of fluconazole 150 mg in the treatment of vaginal candidiasis in general practice. Br J Clin Pract. 1990;44:219-222.

Author: OriginalDrugs Team
Last reviewed: February, 2015

Quick facts

  • Sitz baths -- warm or lukewarm water with 4-5 tablespoons of baking soda -- can soothe vulvar itching and burning.