What is Metronidazole and why is it prescribed?
Metronidazole is an antibacterial drug prescribed for certain vaginal and urinary tract infections in men and women; amebic dysentery and liver abscess; and infections of the abdomen, skin, bones and joints, brain, lungs, and heart caused by certain bacteria. Do not drink alcoholic beverages while taking Metronidazole. The combination can cause abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, headaches, and flushing. It can also change the taste of the alcoholic beverage. When you have stopped taking Metronidazole, wait at least 72 hours (3 days) before consuming any alcohol. Also avoid over-the-counter medications containing alcohol, such as certain cough and cold products.

How should you take Metronidazole?
Follow your doctors directions for taking Metronidazole. Metronidazole works best when there is a constant amount in the blood. Take your doses at evenly spaced intervals, day and night, and try to avoid missing any. If you are being treated for the sexually transmitted genital infection called trichomoniasis, your doctor may want to treat your partner at the same time, even if there are no symptoms. Try to avoid sexual intercourse until the infection is cured. If you do have sex, use a condom. Metronidazole can be taken with or without food. It may cause dry mouth. Hard candy, chewing gum, or bits of ice can help to relieve the problem. If you miss a dose take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Do not take two doses at once. Store Metronidazole at room temperature. Protect it from light.

Are there any Metronidazole side effects?
Metronidazole side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Two serious side effects that have occurred with Metronidazole are seizures and numbness or tingling in the arms, legs, hands, and feet. If you experience either of these symptoms, stop taking the medication and call your doctor immediately. More common Metronidazole side effects may include abdominal cramps, constipation, diarrhea, headache, loss of appetite, nausea, upset stomach, and vomiting. Less common Metronidazole side effects may include blood disorders, confusion, dark urine, decreased sex drive, depression, difficulty sleeping, dizziness, dry mouth (or vagina or vulva), fever, flushing, furry tongue, hives, inability to hold urine, increased production of pale urine, inflamed mouth or tongue, inflammation of the rectum, irritability, lack of muscle coordination, metallic taste, occasional joint pain, pain during sexual intercourse, painful or difficult urination, pelvic pressure, rash, stuffy nose, vertigo, weakness, and yeast infection in the vagina.

What are the possible food and drug interactions when taking Metronidazole?
If Metronidazole is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. Be sure to inform your doctor of all the prescription and over the counter medications you are taking. Do not drink alcohol while taking Metronidazole and for at least 72 hours after your last dose. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Metronidazole with Blood thinners (such as Coumadin), Cholestyramine (Questran), Cimetidine (Tagamet), Disulfiram (Antabuse), Lithium (Eskalith), Phenobarbital, or Phenytoin (Dilantin).

Are there any special warnings about Metronidazole?
If you experience seizures or numbness or tingling in your arms, legs, hands, or feet, remember that you should stop taking Metronidazole and call your doctor immediately. If you have liver disease, make sure the doctor is aware of it. Metronidazole should be used with caution. Active or undiagnosed yeast infections may appear or worsen when you take Metronidazole.

Information on this website is provided for educational purposes and should not replace discussions with your doctor.


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