Ciprofloxacin - oral
Ciprofloxacin - oral
Quinolone antibiotics (including ciprofloxacin) may cause serious and possibly permanent tendon damage (such as tendonitis, tendon rupture), nerve problems in the arms and legs (peripheral neuropathy), and nervous system problems. Get medical help right away if you have any of the following symptoms: pain/numbness/burning/tingling/weakness in your arms/hands/legs/feet, changes in how you sense touch/pain/temperature/vibration/body position, severe/lasting headache, vision changes, shaking (tremors), seizures, mental/mood changes (such as agitation, anxiety, confusion, hallucinations, depression, rare thoughts of suicide).
Tendon damage may occur during or after treatment with this medication. Stop exercising, rest, and get medical help right away if you develop joint/muscle/tendon pain or swelling. Your risk for tendon problems is greater if you are over 60 years of age, if you are taking corticosteroids (such as prednisone), or if you have a kidney, heart, or lung transplant.
This medication may make a certain muscle condition (myasthenia gravis) worse. Tell your doctor right away if you have new or worsening muscle weakness (such as drooping eyelids, unsteady walk) or trouble breathing.
Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor before using this medication.
This medication is used to treat a variety of bacterial infections. Ciprofloxacin belongs to a class of drugs called quinolone antibiotics. It works by stopping the growth of bacteria.
This antibiotic treats only bacterial infections. It will not work for virus infections (such as common cold, flu). Using any antibiotic when it is not needed can cause it to not work for future infections.
Read the Medication Guide and, if available, the Patient Information Leaflet provided by your pharmacist before you start taking ciprofloxacin and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually twice a day in the morning and evening.
The tablet may have a bitter taste if you split, chew, or crush it before taking it. The manufacturer recommends swallowing the tablet whole for this reason.
The dosage and length of treatment is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Drink plenty of fluids while taking this medication unless your doctor tells you otherwise.
Take this medication at least 2 hours before or 6 hours after taking other products that may bind to it, decreasing its effectiveness. Ask your pharmacist about the other products you take. Some examples include: quinapril, sevelamer, sucralfate, vitamins/minerals (including iron and zinc supplements), and products containing magnesium, aluminum, or calcium (such as antacids, didanosine solution, calcium supplements).
Calcium-rich foods, including dairy products (such as milk, yogurt) or calcium-enriched juice, can also decrease the effect of this medication. Take this medication at least 2 hours before or 6 hours after eating calcium-rich foods, unless you are eating these foods as part of a larger meal that contains other (non-calcium-rich) foods. These other foods decrease the calcium binding effect.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist about safely using nutritional supplements/replacements with this medication.
For the best effect, take this antibiotic at evenly spaced times. To help you remember, take this medication at the same time(s) every day.
Continue to take this medication until the full prescribed amount is finished, even if symptoms disappear after a few days. Stopping the medication too early may result in a return of the infection.
Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.
See also Warning section.
Nausea, diarrhea, dizziness, lightheadedness, headache, and trouble sleeping may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including:
Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including:
This medication may rarely cause a severe intestinal condition (Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea) due to a type of resistant bacteria. This condition may occur during treatment or weeks to months after treatment has stopped. Tell your doctor right away if you develop:
Do not use anti-diarrhea or opioid medications if you have any of these symptoms because these products may make them worse.
Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new yeast infection. Contact your doctor if you notice white patches in your mouth, a change in vaginal discharge, or other new symptoms.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including:
In the US -
Before taking ciprofloxacin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other quinolone antibiotics such as norfloxacin, gemifloxacin, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, or ofloxacin; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:
Ciprofloxacin may cause a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation). QT prolongation can rarely cause serious (rarely fatal) fast/irregular heartbeat and other symptoms (such as severe dizziness, fainting) that need medical attention right away.
The risk of QT prolongation may be increased if you have certain medical conditions or are taking other drugs that may cause QT prolongation. Before using ciprofloxacin, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you take and if you have any of the following conditions:
Low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood may also increase your risk of QT prolongation. This risk may increase if you use certain drugs (such as diuretics/"water pills") or if you have conditions such as severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting. Talk to your doctor about using ciprofloxacin safely.
This medication may rarely cause serious changes in blood sugar, especially if you have diabetes. Check your blood sugar regularly as directed and share the results with your doctor. Watch for symptoms of high blood sugar such as increased thirst/urination. Ciprofloxacin may increase the blood-sugar-lowering effects of the medication glyburide. Also watch for symptoms of low blood sugar such as sudden sweating, shaking, fast heartbeat, hunger, blurred vision, dizziness, or tingling hands/feet. It is a good habit to carry glucose tablets or gel to treat low blood sugar. If you don't have these reliable forms of glucose, rapidly raise your blood sugar by eating a quick source of sugar such as table sugar, honey, or candy, or by drinking fruit juice or non- diet soda. Tell your doctor right away about the reaction and the use of this product. To help prevent low blood sugar, eat meals on a regular schedule, and do not skip meals. Your doctor may need to switch you to another antibiotic or adjust your diabetes medications if any reaction occurs.
This drug may make you dizzy. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis).
This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Limit your time in the sun. Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. Tell your doctor right away if you get sunburned or have skin blisters/redness.
Ciprofloxacin may cause live bacterial vaccines (such as typhoid vaccine) to not work as well. Do not have any immunizations/vaccinations while using this medication unless your doctor tells you to.
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).
Children may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially joint/tendon problems.
Older adults may be at greater risk for tendon problems (especially if they are also taking corticosteroids such as prednisone or hydrocortisone), QT prolongation, and a sudden tear/break in the main blood vessel (aorta).
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
This medication passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
See also How to Use and Precautions sections.
Some products that may interact with this drug include:
Many drugs besides ciprofloxacin may affect the heart rhythm (QT prolongation), including amiodarone, dofetilide, quinidine, procainamide, sotalol, among others.
This medication can slow down the removal of other medications from your body, which may affect how they work. Examples of affected drugs include duloxetine, pirfenidone, tasimelteon, tizanidine, among others.
Avoid drinking large amounts of beverages containing caffeine (coffee, tea, colas), eating large amounts of chocolate, or taking over-the-counter products that contain caffeine. This drug may increase and/or prolong the effects of caffeine.
Although most antibiotics are unlikely to affect hormonal birth control such as pills, patch, or ring, a few antibiotics (such as rifampin, rifabutin) can decrease their effectiveness. This could result in pregnancy. If you use hormonal birth control, ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
This medication has been prescribed for your current condition only. Do not use it later for another infection unless your doctor tells you to.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as kidney function, blood counts, cultures) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
Do not change brands of this medication without checking with your doctor or pharmacist. Not all brands have the same effects.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Information last revised January 2019.
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