|Type of medicine||Quinolone antibiotic|
|Used for||Treating infections including chest, bone, gastro-intestinal and urinary tract infections in adults
Complicated infections in children under the supervision of a specialist
|Available as||Tablets, oral suspension and injection|
Ciprofloxacin works by killing the bacteria that are causing the infection.
Before taking ciprofloxacin
Before taking ciprofloxacin make sure your doctor or pharmacist knows:
- If you are pregnant, trying for a baby or breast-feeding.
- If you have ever experienced tendon problems after taking any other quinolone antibiotic such as ofloxacin, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, nalidixic acid or norfloxacin.
- If you have kidney problems.
- If you have epilepsy or any other condition that causes fitting.
- If you have myasthenia gravis (a muscle weakening disease).
- If you know you have glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency.
- If you are taking other medicines, including those available to buy without a prescription, herbal and complementary medicines.
- If you have ever had an allergic reaction to this or any other medicine.
How to take ciprofloxacin
- Before starting this treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from inside the pack.
- Take ciprofloxacin exactly as your doctor has told you. It is usually taken twice a day.
- Space your doses out evenly throughout the day.
- It is not important whether you take ciprofloxacin before or after food.
- Keep taking this antibiotic until the course is finished unless you are told to stop. This is important in order to prevent the infection from coming back.
- Ciprofloxacin tablets should be swallowed whole with plenty of water. Do not chew or break the tablets as they have an unpleasant taste.
- Drink plenty of water while you are being treated with ciprofloxacin.
- Do not take milk, indigestion remedies, or medicines containing iron or zinc, 2 hours before or after you take ciprofloxacin. This is because they interfere with the way ciprofloxacin is absorbed by your body and stop it from working fully.
- If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember unless it is nearly time for your next dose, in which case leave out the missed dose. Do not take two doses together to make up for a forgotten dose.
Getting the most from your treatment
- If you buy any medicines check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with this antibiotic. Do not take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory painkillers (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen while you are being treated with ciprofloxacin.
- Ciprofloxacin may cause your skin to become more sensitive to sunlight than normal. Protect your skin particularly if you are exposed to strong sunlight for long periods during the day. Do not use sunbeds.
- Ciprofloxacin may impair your ability to concentrate. Make sure your reactions are normal before driving, operating machinery or doing other jobs which could be dangerous if you were not sufficiently alert.
- If you are using oral combined hormonal contraception (the 'pill'), additional contraceptive precautions such as condoms are not required during a course of this antibiotic unless you are sick or have diarrhoea. If you need further advice, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
- If you have diabetes, you may need to check your blood glucose levels more regularly as ciprofloxacin may affect the levels of sugar in your blood.
- If you still feel unwell after completing your course of this antibiotic, make another appointment to see your doctor.
- Some people develop thrush (redness and itching in the mouth or vagina) after taking a course of antibiotics. If you think you have thrush, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
- This antibiotic may stop the oral typhoid vaccine from working. If you are having any vaccinations, make sure the person treating you knows that you are taking this medicine.
Can ciprofloxacin cause problems?
Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. These usually improve as your body adjusts to the new medicine, but speak with your doctor or pharmacist if any of the following side-effects continue or become troublesome.
|Common side-effects - these affect less than 1 in 10 people who take this medicine||What can I do if I experience this|
|Feeling or being sick, indigestion, abdominal pain, and wind||Eat little and often. Stick to simple or bland foods|
|Diarrhoea||Drink plenty of water to replace lost fluids. If the diarrhoea is severe or continues to be a problem, speak with your pharmacist or doctor|
|Headache||Ask your pharmacist to recommend a suitable painkiller. If the headache continues, speak with your doctor|
|Dizziness, drowsiness||If affected, do not drive or operate machinery|
Important: If you develop any of the following rare symptoms, contact your doctor for advice straight away:
- Swelling of your tongue, mouth, or face, or any problems with your breathing.
- A severe rash.
- Pain or inflammation in your joints (particularly in your hips, knees or ankles).
If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to this medicine, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
How to store ciprofloxacin
- Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
- Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
Important information about all medicines
Further reading & references
- British National Formulary; 62nd Edition (Sep 2011) British Medical Association and Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, London
- Manufacturer's PIL, Ciproxin® Tablets 500mg; Manufacturer's PIL, Ciproxin® Tablets 500mg, Bayer plc, electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated April 2010.
|Original Author: Helen Allen||Current Version: Helen Allen|
|Last Checked: 07/06/2011||Document ID: 3247 Version: 24||© EMIS|
Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. EMIS has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.