Generic Name: vancomycin (VAN-koe-MYE-sin)
Brand Name: Vancocin
Vancomycin capsules are used for:
Treating certain bacterial infections of the stomach or bowel.
Vancomycin capsules are an antibiotic. It works by killing sensitive bacteria.
Do NOT use vancomycin capsules if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in vancomycin capsules
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using vancomycin capsules:
Some medical conditions may interact with vancomycin capsules. 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 have kidney problems, colitis or other inflammation of the bowel, or hearing problems
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with vancomycin capsules. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Aminoglycosides (eg, tobramycin) because the risk of kidney problems or hearing problems may be increased
- Methotrexate because the risk of its side effects may be increased by vancomycin capsules
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if vancomycin capsules 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 vancomycin capsules:
Use vancomycin capsules as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Take vancomycin capsules by mouth with or without food.
- To clear up your infection completely, take vancomycin capsules for the full course of treatment. Keep taking it even if you feel better in a few days.
- Continue to use vancomycin capsules even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
- If you miss a dose of vancomycin capsules, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use vancomycin capsules.
Important safety information:
- Vancomycin capsules only works against bacteria; it does not treat viral infections (eg, the common cold).
- Long-term or repeated use of vancomycin capsules 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.
- Be sure to use vancomycin capsules 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.
- Kidney problems, including reports of kidney failure, have occurred in patients taking vancomycin capsules. These kidney problems can occur either during treatment or after treatment is stopped, although they have typically occurred within 1 week after vancomycin capsules has been stopped. Contact your doctor right away if you experience decreased urination.
- Lab tests, including kidney function tests and hearing tests, may be performed while you use vancomycin capsules. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- Use vancomycin capsules with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
- Vancomycin capsules should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: It is not known if vancomycin capsules can cause harm to the fetus. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using vancomycin capsules while you are pregnant. Vancomycin capsules are found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking vancomycin capsules.
Possible side effects of vancomycin capsules:
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:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Back pain; gas; headache; nausea; stomach pain; tiredness; vomiting.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); chest pain; decreased, difficult, or painful urination; fainting; fever, chills, or sore throat; flushing; red, swollen, or blistered skin; ringing in the ears, hearing loss, or other hearing changes; severe or persistent diarrhea; severe or persistent dizziness or light-headedness; shortness of breath; swelling of the hands, ankles, or feet; symptoms of low blood potassium levels (eg, irregular heartbeat; muscle pain, weakness, or cramping); unusual bruising or bleeding; wheezing.
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:
Store vancomycin capsules at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep vancomycin capsules out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about vancomycin capsules, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Vancomycin capsules are 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 vancomycin capsules 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 vancomycin capsules. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to vancomycin capsules. 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 vancomycin capsules.
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.
More about vancomycin
- Vancomycin solution
- Vancomycin injection
- Vancomycin (Advanced Reading)
- Vancomycin Intravenous, Injection (Advanced Reading)