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Streptomycin

Pronunciation

Generic Name: streptomycin (STREP-toe-MYE-sin)
Brand Name: Generic only. No brands available.

Streptomycin may cause severe toxic nerve reactions. The risk is increased in patients with kidney problems. Other severe problems like vision problems, trouble keeping your balance, certain brain problems, and hearing problems (eg, permanent hearing loss) may also happen. The risk of hearing problems may be increased if you have kidney problems or already have hearing problems. It may be increased if you get high doses of streptomycin, or if you get it for a long time. The risk may also be increased in older people, infants, or people who are dehydrated. If you already have kidney problems or hearing problems, tell your doctor. Your doctor will monitor your progress to lower the possibility of these effects. Your doctor may also run certain tests (eg, hearing and/or kidney tests). Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.

Do not use streptomycin if you are taking or have recently taken other medicines that can cause nerve, kidney, or hearing problems. This includes amphotericin B, bacitracin, cephaloridine, cisplatin, colistin, cyclosporine, ethacrynic acid, furosemide, paromomycin, polymyxin B, vancomycin, viomycin, or other medicines like this one. There are many other medicines that can do this. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure.

Severe muscle problems and severe breathing problems have happened with streptomycin. The risk of these problems may be increased if you are getting certain medicines used to put you to sleep or to relax your muscles. The risk is also increased if you are getting a certain type of blood transfusion. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.


Streptomycin is used for:

Treating tuberculosis (TB) and infections caused by certain bacteria.

Streptomycin is an aminoglycoside. It works by killing sensitive bacteria by stopping the production of essential proteins needed by the bacteria to survive.

Do NOT use streptomycin if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in streptomycin or other aminoglycoside antibiotics (eg, gentamicin)

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using streptomycin:

Some medical conditions may interact with streptomycin. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you are dehydrated
  • if you have hearing difficulty, nerve problems, muscle problems (eg, myasthenia gravis), Parkinson disease, or kidney problems

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with streptomycin. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Amphotericin B, bacitracin, cephalosporins (eg, cephaloridine), cisplatin, colistin, cyclosporine, diuretics (eg, ethacrynic acid, furosemide), mannitol, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (eg, ibuprofen), other aminoglycosides (eg, gentamicin), paromomycin, polymyxin B, vancomycin, or viomycin because the risk of kidney damage or hearing loss may be increased

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if streptomycin may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use streptomycin:

Use streptomycin as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Streptomycin is given as an injection at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. Contact your health care provider if you have any questions.
  • Drinking extra fluids while you are taking streptomycin is recommended. Check with your doctor or nurse for instructions.
  • If you miss a dose of streptomycin, call your doctor to find out what to do.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use streptomycin.

Important safety information:

  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take streptomycin before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Streptomycin only works against bacteria; it does not treat viral infections (eg, the common cold).
  • Be sure to use streptomycin for the full course of treatment. If you do not, the medicine may not clear up your infection completely. The bacteria could also become less sensitive to this or other medicines. This could make the infection harder to treat in the future.
  • Long-term or repeated use of streptomycin may cause a second infection. Tell your doctor if signs of a second infection occur. Your medicine may need to be changed to treat this.
  • Mild diarrhea is common with antibiotic use. However, a more serious form of diarrhea (pseudomembranous colitis) may rarely occur. This may develop while you use the antibiotic or within several months after you stop using it. Contact your doctor right away if stomach pain or cramps, severe diarrhea, or bloody stools occur. Do not treat diarrhea without first checking with your doctor.
  • Lab tests may be performed while you use streptomycin. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use streptomycin with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Streptomycin may cause harm to the fetus. If you think you may be pregnant, contact your doctor right away. It is not known if this medicine is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking streptomycin.

Possible side effects of streptomycin:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Diarrhea.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); burning, numbness, or tingling; change in balance; confusion; dizziness; fever; headache; hearing loss; muscle weakness; nausea; ringing or roaring in the ears; seizures; symptoms of kidney problems (eg, not able to pass urine, change in how much urine is passed, blood in the urine, a big weight gain); trouble breathing, slow breathing, or shallow breathing; twitching; unusual tiredness or weakness; vomiting.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of streptomycin:

Streptomycin is handled and stored by a health care provider. You will not store it at home. Keep all medicines out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about streptomycin, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Streptomycin is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take streptomycin or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about streptomycin. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to streptomycin. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using streptomycin.

Issue Date: June 3, 2015
Database Edition 15.2.1.003
Copyright © 2015 Clinical Drug Information, LLC

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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