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What is Ofloxacin?
Ofloxacin is an antibiotic drug that belongs to a group of drugs known as fluoroquinolones that is used to fight several bacterial infections and is prescribed for the treatment of bronchitis, pneumonia, chlamydia, gonorrhea, skin infections, urinary tract infections, and prostate infections.
Ofloxacin is available under several trade names such as Floxin and Zo (made by FDC), among a host of several other brands.
Ofloxacin may also be given for conditions not mentioned above.
Important Information about Ofloxacin
You must not take Ofloxacin antibiotic medicine (Floxin, Zo) if you are allergic to it or to other similar antibiotics like moxifloxacin (Avelox), levofloxacin(Levaquin), norfloxacin(Noroxin), or gemifloxacin (Factive) and others. You must also not take Ofloxacin if you are taking tizanidine (Zanaflex), if you have had myasthenia gravis in the past.
Prior to taking Ofloxacin, let your doctor know if you have a heart rhythm problem, kidney or liver diseas, diabetes, joint problems, muscle weakness, breathing trouble, a condition called pseudotumor cerebri, seizures, head injury or tumor in the past, low levels of blood potassium, a personal or family history of Long QT syndrome.
Don't take Ofloxacin medication with dairy items like milk or yogurt, or with juice that contains calcium. Don't consume antacids, vitamin or mineral supplements, didanosine(Videx), or sucralfate (Carafate) powder or chewable tablets before 6 hours of taking Ofloxacin or within 2 hours after taking this medication. Ofloxacin may lead to swelling or tearing of a tendon (fiber that binds the muscles to the bones), especially the Achilles' tendon of the heel.
Ofloxacin medication can cause diarrhea which may indicate another infection. If you witness watery or bloody diarrhea, seek immediate medical attention. Don't use diarrhea medication without your doctor's advice.
It is of utmost importance that you complete the full course of Ofloxacin antibiotic. Your condition may completely vanish even before finishing the full course. If you stop taking the medicine halfway and don't complete the course, chances of relapse of your infection increase many fold and can lead to a more potent infection which can be drug resistant. Ofloxacin will not work with viral infections like cold or flu.
Always store Ofloxacin in a cool and dry place, preferably at room temperature. Keep away from heart, moisture, children and pets.
Before taking Ofloxacin
Prior to taking Ofloxacin antibiotic medicine (Floxin, Zo), take care of the precautions listed above.
If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, tell your doctor before starting a Ofloxacin course as it may harm your baby though any such case has not been heard off yet. Ofloxacin may pass into breast milk and harm your baby. Consult your doctor first if you are breast feeding and if it is safe to take this medication without affecting your child.
How should I take Ofloxacin?
Take Ofloxacin strictly as prescribed by your doctor. Never alter the dosage by any amount or use it for longer than prescribed period. All medications come with a patient leaflet that contains complete information about the drug. Read it carefully for more details.
Take Ofloxacin with a glass of water (8oz.). It is always better to consume several extra glasses of water or liquids each day while taking this medication. Ofloxacin may be taken with or without food, but make it a habit to take the medication at the same time every day.
Don't consume dairy items like milk, yogurt or calcium fortified juices while taking Ofloxacin though you can have them as part of your regular meal and not while taking the medication. The reason is that the dairy items can make the medication less effective.
What if I miss a dose of Ofloxacin?
Don't miss even a single dose of Ofloxacin or any medication, especially antibiotics. However, if you miss a dose of Ofloxacin for any reasons, take it as soon as you remember. Don't take the missed dose if the time to take the next dose is almost up. Don't take two doses very close to each other to make up for the missed dose.
What to do if I over dose?
If you overdose on Ofloxacin, get emergency medical help or contact the Poison Help Line by dialing 1-800-222-1222. You may experience symptoms like seizure, weakness, urination problems, or blue lips with anemic skin.
Things to avoid while taking Ofloxacin
You might be taking some other medications that are not compatible with Ofloxacin. Some of those drugs may make Ofloxacin less potent when taken at the same time. Do not take these medications within 2 hours before or after taking Ofloxacin: antacids that have calcium, magnesium, or aluminum (Tums, Mylanta, Rolaids); ulcer medication sucralfate (Carafate); calcium, iron, zinc or other multi-vitamins and multi-minerals; didanosine (Videx) powder or chewable tablets.
Avoid unnecessary exposure to sunlight and tanning beds. Ofloxacin intake can make you prone to sunburn. Remember to wear proper covering clothes and apply appropriate sunscreen with at least 30 SPF on exposed portion when outdoors. Also avoid doing things which require more attention and alertness while taking Ofloxacin as it impairs your thinking or reflexes.
Ofloxacin Side Effects
Taking Ofloxacin may result in some allergic reactions like hives, breathing difficulty, swelling on face, lips, or tongue. If any of these side effects appears, stop taking this medication immediately and contact your doctor.
Ofloxacin may cause some rare but serious side effects like fainting; severe giddiness; irregular heartbeat; unexplained pain; vision problems like pain in eye; snapping or popping sound, swelling, tenderness, stiffness in joints; watery or bloody diarrhea; confusion; hallucinations; depression; unusual behavior; seizures; severe headache; ringing in ears; decreased or dark colored urination; easy bruising or bleeding; severe skin reaction; fever; sore throat; red or purple rash that leads to blistering and peeling; or pale or yellow skin. See a doctor immediately in case of these serious effects.
There are also some less serious but commonly experience side effects of Ofloxacin like nausea, vomiting, giddiness, dullness; blurred vision; nervousness; anxiety; aggressive behavior; changes in sleep patterns including insomnia or nightmare.
The above list of side effects is not a complete one and there may be other side effects. Contact FDA by calling 1-800-FDA-1088 and report your side effects.
Ofloxacin drug interactions
Some medications with which Ofloxacin may interact are tizanidine (Zanaflex), blood thinner like warfaring (Coumadin, Jantoven); clozapine(Clozaril, Fazaclo); cyclosporine; glyburid; methotrexate; metoclopramide; phenytoin; probenecid; ropinirole; theophylline; ibuprofen; dicloefenac;; meloxicam; or steroids.
Don't take it together with Ofloxacin and let your doctor know if you are using the above mentioned medications. You may use them depending on your doctor's advice.
The list of drugs above with which Ofloxacin can interact is not complete and there may be other drugs which can interact with it. Always consult your doctor before starting a new medication and before stopping or altering the course of any existing one.