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What is Ampicillin?
Ampicillin is an antibiotic of the aminopenicillin family designated for the treatment of various bacterial infections, including Streptococci, Pneumococci, Enterobacteriaceae, Meningococci and Haemophilus influenzae.
Due to the presence of an amino group, it is effective against not only gram-positive but also gram-negative bacteria.
It works by penetrating the outer membrane of bacteria and inhibits synthesis of bacterial cell wall, which results in cell lysis. The drug has been extensively used in bacterial infections treatment since the mid-20th-century.
When is Ampicillin prescribed?
Ampicillin is prescribed for the treatment of urinary infections, bladder infections, sinus infection, epiglottitis, pharyngitis, otitis media, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, endocarditis, meningitis, GIT infections, including salmonella infections, E.coli, Shigella, P. mirabilis and others. It is the first line therapy of infections incited by Enterococci.
The drug is safe during pregnancy and can be prescribed to pregnant women.
How to take Ampicillin?
Ampicillin capsules are administered orally, 3 or 4 times a day in equally spaced doses.
The adult dose for most infections is 250-500 mg q6h for 7-14 days. Severe or chronic infections may require higher doses.
Gonorrhea is treated with a single dose of 3,5 gr Ampicillin concomitantly with 1g of probenecid.
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The drug should be taken on an empty stomach, i.e. 1 hour before meals or 2 hours after a meal for better absorption.
What are Ampicillin side effects?
Ampicillin may spur the following side effects: nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, rash and itching. Patients who experience symptoms of pseudomembranous colitis after the initiation of treatment (abdominal pain, diarrhea, fever) should immediately seek medical attention.
When is Ampicillin contraindicated?
Ampicillin is contraindicated to patients with a history of allergies to any drug of the penicillin group. It also shouldn’t be administered to treat infections incited by penicillinase-producing organisms.
Concomitant administration with some drugs may cause adverse drug interactions. Thus, when used along with Allopurinol, skin rash is highly probable, especially in hyperuricemic patients. Discuss all possible drug interactions and contraindications with your physician before use.