What Amoxil Is
Amoxil (generic name amoxicillin) is an antibiotic belonging to the penicillin group. It is often prescribed to treat various types of bacterial infections, such as ear, skin, or urinary tract infections, and the vast majority of the respiratory system infections, such as tonsillitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, nose or throat infections. Amoxil works by preventing the bacteria from multiplying.
Sometimes amoxicillin is used together with macrolide antibiotic clarithromycin (Biaxin) for treating stomach ulcers caused by Helicobacter pylori infection. In this case, it can be also combined with a stomach acid reducer called lansoprazole (Prevacid).
Recommendations for Use, Dosage, and Overdose
Like any other antibiotic, amoxicillin is a prescription medication and must be taken only as per doctor’s order! Follow all the directions and recommendations on its use, duration of treatment, and dosage. In case of any questions, consult your physician.
Amoxil medication should be taken at the same time each day. Your physician will define the treatment duration, drug form, and dose based on your current conditions and response to treatment. You can find Amoxil in the following forms: oral suspension, oral capsule, oral powder for reconstitution, chewable oral tablet, oral tablet, dispersible oral tablet, oral tablet with extended release.
Oral suspension (liquid): always shake the bottle before measuring a dose. Do not use a household spoon for measuring; take a dosing syringe (provided in the packaging), or a special medicine dose-measuring device instead. The liquid medicine can be mixed with water, fruit juice, milk, baby formula, or ginger ale. Drink the measured mixture instantly without any delay for later drinking; do not mix ahead of time. You can store the bottle in a refrigerator, but do not freeze it. The shelf life of such form of Amoxil is 14 days after being mixed at the pharmacy; please, dispose of all the leftovers at the end of this time.
There are no food restrictions during the treatment with Amoxil. You can take it without any regard to meals, unless otherwise defined. For example, it’s better to take Amoxil extended-release tablets within one hour after meal.
In case you’ve missed one dose, take the next one at the right time, but not two doses at once. If you accidentally overdose, call your healthcare provider or seek emergency medical attention. Do not take any alcohol while on Amoxil treatment. Store Amoxil at room temperature away from heat, moisture, and light.
While taking amoxicillin, you may need frequent medical tests. At the same time, this medication can distort the results of certain medical tests. Please, inform your doctor that you are using Amoxil.
If amoxicillin is combined with clarithromycin and/or lansoprazole for stomach ulcer treatment, strictly follow your prescription. Read the doctor’s guidelines and patient instructions you can find in the packaging of each medication. Do not change your schedule or doses without discussing it with your physician.
Please, be sure you fulfill all of your physician’s recommendations and use Amoxil for the whole prescribed course, even if your state quickly improves. In case you finish the treatment too soon, the bacteria can develop resilience to this particular type of medication, so it would be even harder to get rid of the disease. Skipping doses may also lead to antimicrobial resistance development.
Amoxil, as any other antibiotic, does not treat any viral infections. You may harm your health, using it for the treatment of common cold or flu. However, amoxicillin can be prescribed together with other medications if a bacterial infection complicates the viral one, but only by a qualified physician.
Precautions and Contraindications
Inform your physician if you are prone to allergy to amoxicillin or any other antibiotic of the penicillin family, such as ampicillin (Principen, Omnipen), dicloxacillin (Dynapen, Dycill), penicillin (Pen-Vee K, Beepen-VK, Veetids, Ledercillin VK, Pfizerpen, Pen-V, V-Cillin K,), oxacillin (Bactocill), etc.
To make Amoxil intake safer for you, please, inform your doctor if you are allergic to any of cephalosporin antibiotics, such as Keflex, Cefzil, Omnicef, Ceftin, etc. Do not forget to let them know if you suffer from kidney or liver disease, mononucleosis, blood clotting disorder or bleeding, asthma, any type of allergy, or if any of your previous antibiotics treatments have resulted in diarrhea.
Patients who are prescribed amoxicillin to treat gonorrhea should also be checked for syphilis.
There is no information how this medicine can affect an unborn baby. Please, inform your physician if you are planning pregnancy in the near future or if you are already pregnant. Amoxil should only be used if the potential benefit to the mother overweighs any potential risk to the fetus. Breastfeeding may not be safe while taking amoxicillin. Consult your doctor about any kind of risk.
Amoxil can be used for children’s treatment, even for newborns and infants (less than 3 months old), but in special and multiple doses per day due to incompletely developed renal function affecting clearance of amoxicillin in this age group. In this case, a qualified doctor should make all the prescriptions.
Take Amoxil as per your physician’s prescription. Follow all the prescriptions and recommendations on its use. In case of any questions, consult the instruction sheet or your doctor.
Interactions with Other Drugs and Substances
Inform your doctor about other medications you take. Amoxicillin should be taken with caution by patients who take any other antibiotic, drugs for decreasing uric acid production (allopurinol, probenecid), or any type of blood thinners, like warfarin, Coumadin, Jantoven.
Please, note that this list is not complete. In general, 37 drugs can interact with Amoxil in different ways, including both over-the-counter and prescription medicines, some herbal products, and vitamins.
Amoxicillin can affect the use of birth control pills; consult with your doctor, which non-hormone method (spermicide, diaphragm, condoms) can be used for the prevention of unwanted pregnancy.
Amoxil can cause diarrhea as a side effect, but this symptom can be also a sign of a new infection. Diarrhea may need using some anti-diarrhea medicine. Do not prescribe the drug by yourself; consult your physician instead. If diarrhea becomes bloody or watery, seek medical consultation straight away.
If you need any surgery, inform your surgeon or doctor about all the drugs you are using at the moment.
Like any other antibiotic, amoxicillin can cause many side effects. Some of them do not need instant medical attention; however, you can consult your doctor about their prevention or elimination. These side effects may occur as an adjustment of the organism to a new substance and fade away after some time. Check with your physician in case any of the following side effects continue or become worrisome:
- Change in taste, unusual or unpleasant aftertaste;
- Changes in behavior, agitation, confusion;
- Sleep deprivation;
- White patches on the tongue, in the mouth or throat;
- Tooth discoloration (gray, brown, or yellow staining);
- Black “hairy” tongue;
- Convulsions, dizziness.
The following reactions need immediate consultation with your doctor:
- Bloody, watery, and severe diarrhea, black, tarry stools;
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing, cough;
- Stomach, back, limb, joint or muscle pain,
- Chest pain, fast heartbeat, chest tightness;
- Dark and/or bloody urine, painful or difficult urination;
- Red or yellow eyes;
- Dizziness, uncomfortable feeling;
- Fever, increased thirst, tenderness;
- Ulcers, sores, or white spots in the mouth or on the lips;
- Nausea, vomiting.
Be very attentive to your body’s reactions while taking antibiotics. Even though such side effects occur rarely, consult your physician if you have any of the symptoms or signs mentioned above.
Keep in Mind
Before usage, please, consult with your physician to ensure the information mentioned above applies to your case. Do not forget to inform your doctor about any other currently taken drugs, or some special circumstances: allergies, breastfeeding, or pregnancy, etc. Do not recommend or share your medicine with any other person, even if the symptoms are similar to yours. Keep away from children’s reach. Inform your doctor in case of no positive dynamics. If you experience any strong side effects, contact your physician immediately.