metronidazole (generic name)

It medicine is used to treat or prevent certain kinds of bacterial and protozoal infections
(me troe NI da zole)
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What is this medicine?

METRONIDAZOLE (me troe NI da zole) is an antiinfective. It medicine is used to treat or prevent certain kinds of bacterial and protozoal infections. It will not work for colds, flu, or other viral infections.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • anemia or other blood disorders
  • disease of the nervous system
  • fungal or yeast infection
  • history of edema, swelling
  • if you drink alcohol containing drinks
  • liver disease
  • seizures
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to metronidazole, or other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

This medicine is for infusion into a vein. It is usually given by a health care professional in a hospital or clinic setting.

If you get this medicine at home, you will be taught how to prepare and give this medicine. Use exactly as directed. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.

It is important that you put your used needles and syringes in a special sharps container. Do not put them in a trash can. If you do not have a sharps container, call your pharmacist or healthcare provider to get one.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
  • alcohol or any product that contains alcohol
  • amprenavir oral solution
  • disulfiram
  • paclitaxel injection
  • ritonavir oral solution
  • sertraline oral solution
  • sulfamethoxazole-trimethoprim injection

This medicine may also interact with the following medications:

  • cimetidine
  • lithium
  • phenobarbital
  • phenytoin
  • warfarin

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Tell your doctor or health care professional if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse.

You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells.

Avoid alcoholic drinks while you are taking this medicine and for three days afterward. Alcohol may make you feel dizzy, sick, or flushed.

If you are being treated for a sexually transmitted disease, avoid sexual contact until you have finished your treatment. Your sexual partner may also need treatment.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • confusion, clumsiness
  • difficulty speaking
  • discolored or sore mouth
  • dizziness
  • fever, infection
  • numbness, tingling, pain or weakness
  • trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
  • redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
  • seizures
  • unusual bleeding, bruising
  • unusually weak or tired
  • vaginal irritation, dryness, or discharge

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • dark urine
  • diarrhea
  • headache
  • irritability
  • metallic taste
  • nausea
  • pain, irritation where injected
  • stomach pain, cramps
  • trouble sleeping

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Last Updated: October 05, 2009
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