Generic Name: piperacillin and tazobactam (Intravenous route)

pi-per-a-SIL-in SOE-dee-um, taz-oh-BAK-tam SOE-dee-um

Commonly used brand name(s)

In the U.S.

  • Zosyn

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Powder for Solution
  • Solution

Therapeutic Class: Antibiotic

Pharmacologic Class: Piperacillin

Uses For Zosyn

Piperacillin and tazobactam injection is used to treat bacterial infections in many different parts of the body.

Piperacillin and tazobactam combination is an antibiotic that belongs to the group of medicines known as penicillins and beta-lactamase inhibitors. It works by killing the bacteria and preventing their growth. However, this medicine will not work for colds, flu, or other virus infections.

Slideshow: 10 Things to Know About Antibiotic Resistance

This medicine is to be given only by or under the direct supervision of your doctor.

Before Using Zosyn

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 this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine 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

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of piperacillin and tazobactam combination in children. However, safety and efficacy have not been established in children younger than 2 months of age.

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of piperacillin and tazobactam combination in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney, or heart problems, which may require an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving piperacillin and tazobactam combination.

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. When you are receiving this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Methotrexate
  • Vecuronium
  • Warfarin

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 this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Bleeding problems or
  • Congestive heart failure or
  • Diarrhea or
  • Heart disease or
  • Hypokalemia (low potassium in the blood) or
  • Kidney failure—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Cystic fibrosis (genetic disorder)—Patients with this condition may have an increased chance of fever and skin rash.
  • Kidney disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.

Proper Use of Zosyn

A nurse or other trained health professional will give you or your child this medicine. This medicine is given through a needle placed in one of your veins. The medicine must be injected slowly, so your IV tube will need to stay in place for 30 minutes.

Precautions While Using Zosyn

Your doctor will check your or your child's progress closely while you are receiving this medicine. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to receive it. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects. If your or your child's symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, call your doctor right away.

This medicine may cause serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. Call your doctor right away if you or your child have itching, hives, hoarseness, trouble breathing, trouble swallowing, or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth after you receive this medicine.

Serious skin reactions can occur with this medicine. Check with your doctor right away if you or your child have blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin, red skin lesions, severe acne or skin rash, sores or ulcers on the skin, or fever or chills while you are receiving this medicine.

Piperacillin and tazobactam combination may cause diarrhea, and in some cases it can be severe. It may occur 2 months or more after you stop receiving this medicine. Do not take any medicine to treat diarrhea without first checking with your doctor. Diarrhea medicines may make the diarrhea worse or make it last longer. If you have any questions about this or if mild diarrhea continues or gets worse, check with your doctor.

Before you have any medical tests, tell the doctor in charge that you or your child are using this medicine. The results of some tests may be affected by this medicine.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Zosyn 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 or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common
  • Diarrhea
Less common
  • Bladder pain
  • bloating or swelling of the face, arms, hands, lower legs, or feet
  • blurred vision
  • burning upper abdominal or stomach pain
  • changes in urination
  • chest pain
  • confusion
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • fever or sweating
  • headache
  • inflammation or swelling at the injection site
  • lower back or side pain
  • nausea or vomiting
  • pain, tenderness, or swelling of the foot or leg
  • pain, warmth, or burning in the fingers, toes, and legs
  • problems with vision or hearing
  • skin rash
  • slow or fast heartbeat
  • troubled breathing
Rare
  • Abdominal or stomach cramps, pain, or tenderness
  • agitation
  • bone pain
  • bruising
  • chills
  • cold sweats
  • cough
  • deep or fast breathing with dizziness
  • depression
  • diarrhea, watery and severe, which may also be bloody
  • drowsiness
  • dry mouth
  • hives
  • hostility
  • itching of the vagina or genital area
  • lethargy
  • muscle pain or cramps
  • muscle stiffness or twitching
  • nightmares
  • numbness or tingling in the hands, feet, or lips
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • sore throat
  • sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips, tongue, or inside the mouth
  • swollen glands
  • temporary blindness
  • thick, white vaginal discharge with no odor or with a mild odor
  • total body jerking
  • unexplained weight loss
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
Incidence not known
  • Back or leg pain
  • blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
  • high fever
  • joint or muscle pain
  • red skin lesions, often with a purple center
  • yellow eyes or skin

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:

More common
  • Difficulty having a bowel movement (stool)
  • trouble sleeping
Less common
  • Acid or sour stomach
  • cracks in the skin at the corners of the mouth
  • hiccup
  • irritation and redness of the skin
  • runny nose
  • sneezing
  • stuffy nose
  • white patches in the mouth or on the tongue
Rare
  • Body aches or pain
  • burning feeling in the chest or stomach
  • change in taste or bad unusual or unpleasant (after) taste
  • feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • sensation of spinning
  • severe sleepiness
  • tenderness in stomach area
  • vision changes
  • voice changes

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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