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aztreonam (Intravenous route, Injection route)

Pronunciation

az-TREE-oh-nam

Commonly used brand name(s)

In the U.S.

  • Azactam

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Powder for Solution
  • Solution

Therapeutic Class: Antibiotic

Chemical Class: Monobactam

Uses For aztreonam

Aztreonam is an antibiotic that is used to treat infections caused by bacteria. It works by killing bacteria or preventing their growth.

Slideshow: Flashback: FDA Drug Approvals 2013

Aztreonam is used to treat bacterial infections in many different parts of the body. It is sometimes given with other antibiotics. aztreonam will not work for colds, flu, or other viral infections.

aztreonam is available only with your doctor's prescription.

Before Using aztreonam

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For aztreonam, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to aztreonam or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Studies have been done in children and have shown that aztreonam is effective in treating certain bacterial infections and that side effects in children are similar to those experienced by adults. Elevations of liver enzymes and reductions in white blood cell counts were seen in children who were given high doses of aztreonam or who had more serious infections.

Geriatric

Aztreonam has been tested in a limited number of patients 65 years of age or older and has not been shown to cause different side effects or problems in older people than it does in younger adults.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters B Animal studies have revealed no evidence of harm to the fetus, however, there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR animal studies have shown an adverse effect, but adequate studies in pregnant women have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus.

Breast Feeding

Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during breastfeeding.

Interactions with Medicines

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.

Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of aztreonam. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Liver disease—Patients receiving high doses of aztreonam for a long time, who also have severe liver disease, may have an increased chance of side effects
  • Kidney disease—Patients with kidney disease may have an increased chance of side effects

Proper Use of aztreonam

To help clear up your infection completely, aztreonam must be given for the full time of treatment, even if you begin to feel better after a few days. Also, aztreonam works best when there is a constant amount in the blood or urine. To help keep the amount constant, aztreonam must be given on a regular schedule.

Dosing

The dose of aztreonam will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of aztreonam. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For injection dosage form:
    • Adults and children 16 years of age and older: 1 to 2 grams injected slowly into a vein over a twenty- to sixty-minute period. This is repeated every six to twelve hours.
    • Children up to 16 years of age: Dosage is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor.

aztreonam Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

Less common or rare
  • Black, tarry stools
  • blood in urine or stools
  • burning or itching of vagina
  • chest pain
  • chills
  • confusion
  • convulsions (seizures)
  • cough
  • dark urine
  • diarrhea
  • difficulty in breathing
  • discharge from vagina
  • discomfort, inflammation, or swelling at the injection site
  • dizziness
  • eye pain
  • fever
  • flu-like symptoms
  • general feeling of illness
  • headache
  • hives
  • light gray-colored stools
  • loss of appetite
  • numbness of tongue
  • pinpoint red spots on skin
  • seeing double
  • skin rash, redness, or itching
  • sore throat
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • yellow skin or eyes

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common or rare
  • Abdominal or stomach cramps
  • altered sense of taste
  • bad breath
  • breast tenderness
  • burning or prickling feeling of skin
  • flushing
  • increased sweating
  • mouth ulcers
  • muscular aches
  • nasal congestion
  • nausea or vomiting
  • ringing, buzzing, or noise in ear
  • small, nonraised, round, purplish or red spots on skin
  • sneezing
  • trouble in sleeping

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

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