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ofloxacin

Pronunciation

Generic Name: ofloxacin (oral) (oh FLOX a sin)
Brand Name: Floxin, Floxin I.V.

What is ofloxacin?

Ofloxacin is an antibiotic in a group of drugs called fluoroquinolones (flor-o-KWIN-o-lones). Ofloxacin fights bacteria in the body.

Ofloxacin is used to treat bacterial infections of the skin, lungs, prostate, or urinary tract (bladder and kidneys). Ofloxacin is also used to treat pelvic inflammatory disease and Chlamydia and/or gonorrhea.

Ofloxacin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about ofloxacin?

You may not be able to use ofloxacin if you have a muscle disorder. Tell your doctor if you have a history of myasthenia gravis.

Ofloxacin may cause swelling or tearing of a tendon (the fiber that connects bones to muscles in the body), especially in the Achilles' tendon of the heel. This effect may be more likely to occur if you are over 60, if you take steroid medication, or if you have had a kidney, heart, or lung transplant.

Slideshow: Flashback: FDA Drug Approvals 2013

Stop taking ofloxacin and call your doctor at once if you have sudden pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness, stiffness, or movement problems in any of your joints. Rest the joint until you receive medical care or instructions.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking ofloxacin?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to ofloxacin or other fluoroquinolones (ciprofloxacin, gemifloxacin, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, norfloxacin, and others).

You may not be able to use ofloxacin if you have a muscle disorder. Tell your doctor if you have a history of myasthenia gravis.

To make sure ofloxacin is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • a heart rhythm disorder, especially if you take medication to treat it;

  • slow heartbeats, or a personal or family history of Long QT syndrome;

  • tendon problems, arthritis or other joint problems;

  • a muscle or nerve disorder;

  • cirrhosis or other liver disease;

  • kidney disease;

  • seizures or epilepsy;

  • a history of head injury or brain tumor;

  • a history of allergic reaction to an antibiotic;

  • diabetes (especially if you use insulin or take oral diabetes medication);

  • low levels of potassium in your blood (hypokalemia); or

  • if you use a blood thinner (warfarin, Coumadin) and have "INR" or prothrombin time tests.

Ofloxacin may cause swelling or tearing of a tendon (the fiber that connects bones to muscles in the body), especially in the Achilles' tendon of the heel. This can happen during treatment or up to several months after you stop taking ofloxacin. Tendon problems may be more likely to occur if you are over 60, if you take steroid medication, or if you have had a kidney, heart, or lung transplant.

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether ofloxacin will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

Ofloxacin can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.

How should I take ofloxacin?

Ofloxacin is usually taken every 12 hours. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Take this medicine with a full glass of water (8 ounces). Drink several extra glasses of fluid each day while you are taking ofloxacin.

You may take ofloxacin with or without food. Take the medicine at the same time each day.

Use this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Skipping doses may also increase your risk of further infection that is resistant to antibiotics. Ofloxacin will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu.

If you are being treated for gonorrhea, your doctor may also have you tested for syphilis, another sexually transmitted disease.

Do not share this medicine with another person (especially a child), even if they have the same symptoms you have.

This medication can cause you to have a false positive drug screening test. If you provide a urine sample for drug screening, tell the laboratory staff that you are taking ofloxacin.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking ofloxacin?

You may be taking certain other medicines that should not be taken at the same time as ofloxacin. Avoid taking the following medicines within 2 hours before or after you take ofloxacin. These other medicines can make ofloxacin much less effective when taken at the same time:

  • antacids that contain calcium, magnesium, or aluminum (such as Amphojel, Di-Gel Maalox, Milk of Magnesia, Mylanta, Pepcid Complete, Rolaids, Rulox, Tums, and others), or the ulcer medicine sucralfate (Carafate);

  • didanosine (Videx) powder or chewable tablets;

  • vitamin or mineral supplements that contain aluminum, calcium, iron, magnesium, or zinc.

Avoid exposure to sunlight or tanning beds. Ofloxacin can make you sunburn more easily. Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) when you are outdoors. Call your doctor if you have severe burning, redness, itching, rash, or swelling after being in the sun.

Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or bloody, stop taking ofloxacin and call your doctor. Do not use anti-diarrhea medicine unless your doctor tells you to.

Ofloxacin may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

Ofloxacin side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives, or the first sign of a skin rash; fast heartbeats, difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Ofloxacin may cause swelling or tearing of (rupture) a tendon. Ofloxacin can also have serious effects on your nerves, and may cause permanent nerve damage. Stop taking this medicine and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • signs of tendon rupture--sudden pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness, stiffness, movement problems, or a snapping or popping sound in any of your joints (rest the joint until you receive medical care or instructions); or

  • nerve symptoms--numbness, tingling, burning pain, or being more sensitive to temperature, light touch, or the sense of your body position.

Stop using ofloxacin and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • headache with chest pain and severe dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeats;

  • dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);

  • muscle weakness or trouble breathing;

  • diarrhea that is watery or bloody;

  • sudden weakness or ill feeling, fever, chills, sore throat, mouth sores, easy bruising or bleeding;

  • depression, confusion, hallucinations, paranoia, tremors, feeling restless or anxious, unusual thoughts or behavior, insomnia, nightmares;

  • seizure (convulsions); or

  • increased pressure inside the skull-- severe headaches, ringing in your ears, dizziness, nausea, vision problems, pain behind your eyes.

Common side effects may include:

  • stomach discomfort, vomiting, mild diarrhea;

  • vaginal itching or discharge;

  • mild dizziness; or

  • mild headache.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Ofloxacin dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Inhalation Bacillus anthracis:

Mass casualty treatment or prophylaxis of inhalational anthrax: 400 mg orally every 12 hours for 60 days

In case of intentional anthrax release as a biological weapon, the Working Group on Civilian Biodefense has suggested that, based on in vitro studies, ofloxacin could be used for postexposure prophylaxis or treatment of inhalational anthrax if ciprofloxacin and doxycycline are unavailable.

Usual Adult Dose for Anthrax Prophylaxis:

Mass casualty treatment or prophylaxis of inhalational anthrax: 400 mg orally every 12 hours for 60 days

In case of intentional anthrax release as a biological weapon, the Working Group on Civilian Biodefense has suggested that, based on in vitro studies, ofloxacin could be used for postexposure prophylaxis or treatment of inhalational anthrax if ciprofloxacin and doxycycline are unavailable.

Usual Adult Dose for Bronchitis:

400 mg orally every 12 hours for 10 days

Usual Adult Dose for Campylobacter Gastroenteritis:

400 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 3 days. However, most cases are self-limited, and prudent withholding of antibiotics in mild cases does not appear to slow recovery in most patients.

Usual Adult Dose for Cervicitis:

Due to Chlamydia trachomatis and/or Neisseria gonorrhoeae: 300 mg orally every 12 hours for 7 days

The patient's sexual partner(s) should also be evaluated/treated.

Due to high rates of resistance, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) do not recommend fluoroquinolones for treatment of gonococcal infections in the United States or for infections acquired in Asia, the Pacific Islands, England, and Wales. Ceftriaxone or oral cefixime are recommended as first-line treatment of gonorrhea in the United States or acquired in these areas. Antimicrobial susceptibility patterns should be monitored. The CDC recommends fluoroquinolones as alternative therapy only when gonococcal culture proves susceptibility.

Usual Adult Dose for Chancroid:

400 mg orally every 12 hours for 3 days, depending on the nature and severity of the infection

The patient's sexual partner(s) should also be evaluated/treated.

Usual Adult Dose for Chlamydia Infection:

300 mg orally twice daily for 7 days

The patient's sexual partner(s) should also be evaluated/treated.

Usual Adult Dose for Cystitis:

Uncomplicated: 200 mg orally every 12 hours
Duration: 3 days for infections due to Escherichia coli or Klebsiella pneumoniae; 7 days for infections due to other organisms

Usual Adult Dose for Epididymitis -- Non-Specific:

200 to 400 mg orally every 12 hours for 10 days

Usual Adult Dose for Epididymitis -- Sexually Transmitted:

300 mg orally every 12 hours for 10 days

The patient's sexual partner(s) should also be evaluated/treated.

Ofloxacin is recommended by the CDC for nongonococcal epididymitis in patients over 35 years old, for infections due to enteric organisms, or as an alternate agent for nongonococcal infections in patients with hypersensitivity to ceftriaxone or doxycycline.

Due to high rates of resistance, the CDC do not recommend fluoroquinolones for treatment of gonococcal infections in the United States or for infections acquired in Asia, the Pacific Islands, England, and Wales. Ceftriaxone is recommended as first-line treatment of gonococcal infections in the United States or acquired in these areas. Antimicrobial susceptibility patterns should be monitored. The CDC recommends fluoroquinolones as alternative therapy only when gonococcal culture proves susceptibility.

Usual Adult Dose for Gonococcal Infection -- Disseminated:

400 mg orally every 12 hours

Due to high rates of resistance, the CDC does not recommend fluoroquinolones for treatment of gonococcal infections in the United States or for infections acquired in Asia, the Pacific Islands, England, and Wales. Antimicrobial susceptibility patterns should be monitored. The CDC recommends fluoroquinolones as alternative therapy only when culture proves susceptibility.

The CDC currently recommends initial hospitalization and injectable antimicrobials (i.e., ceftriaxone, cefotaxime, ceftizoxime) for the treatment of disseminated gonococcal infection. Twenty-four to forty-eight hours after improvement begins, the patient can be switched to oral cefixime or cefpodoxime for a total course of at least 1 week.

Doxycycline therapy for 7 days (if not pregnant) or single dose azithromycin is also recommended to treat possible concurrent chlamydial infection.

The patient's sexual partner(s) should also be evaluated/treated.

Usual Adult Dose for Gonococcal Infection -- Uncomplicated:

Uncomplicated urethral/cervical gonococcal infections: 400 mg orally one time

Due to high rates of resistance, the CDC does not recommend fluoroquinolones for treatment of gonococcal infections in the United States or for infections acquired in Asia, the Pacific Islands, England, and Wales. Ceftriaxone or oral cefixime are recommended as first-line treatment of gonorrhea in the United States or acquired in these areas. Antimicrobial susceptibility patterns should be monitored. The CDC recommends fluoroquinolones as alternative therapy only when culture proves susceptibility.

Doxycycline therapy for 7 days (if not pregnant) or single dose azithromycin is also recommended to treat possible concurrent chlamydial infection.

The patient's sexual partner(s) should also be evaluated/treated.

Usual Adult Dose for Joint Infection:

Mild to moderate: 400 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 3 to 4 weeks, depending on the nature and severity of the infection. Longer therapy, 6 weeks or more, may be required for prosthetic joint infections. In addition, removal of the prosthesis is usually required to cure the infection.

Usual Adult Dose for Mycobacterium avium-intracellulare -- Treatment:

400 mg orally every 12 hours

The treatment of disseminated MAI infection in immunocompromised patients consists of either clarithromycin or azithromycin and 1 to 3 other drugs such as ethambutol, ciprofloxacin, ofloxacin, rifampin, rifabutin or amikacin. The optimal combination of drugs is not known. As long as a clinical and microbiological response is documented, therapy should be continued for life.

Usual Adult Dose for Nongonococcal Urethritis:

300 mg orally every 12 hours for 7 days

The patient's sexual partner(s) should also be evaluated/treated.

Usual Adult Dose for Osteomyelitis:

Mild to moderate: 400 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 4 to 6 weeks, depending on the nature and severity of the infection. Chronic osteomyelitis may require one to two months of additional antibiotic therapy and may benefit from surgical debridement.

Usual Adult Dose for Pelvic Inflammatory Disease:

400 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 14 days, depending on the nature and severity of the infection. The patient should be reevaluated and switched to parenteral antibiotics if she does not respond to oral therapy within 72 hours.

Due to high rates of resistance, the CDC does not recommend fluoroquinolones for treatment of gonococcal infections in the United States or for infections acquired in Asia, the Pacific Islands, England, and Wales. A parenteral cephalosporin is recommended as first-line treatment of gonococcal infections in the United States or acquired in these areas. Antimicrobial susceptibility patterns should be monitored. The CDC recommends fluoroquinolones as alternative therapy only when gonococcal culture proves susceptibility.

Usual Adult Dose for Plague:

Postexposure prophylaxis: 400 mg orally every 12 hours for 7 days
Treatment: 400 mg orally every 12 hours for 10 days

In case of intentional plague release as a biological weapon, the Working Group on Civilian Biodefense has suggested ofloxacin as an alternative agent to ciprofloxacin or doxycycline for treatment or postexposure prophylaxis of plague in a mass-casualty setting.

Usual Adult Dose for Pneumonia:

400 mg orally every 12 hours for 10 to 21 days

Usual Adult Dose for Prostatitis:

300 mg orally every 12 hours for 6 weeks

Usual Adult Dose for Pyelonephritis:

Uncomplicated: 400 mg orally every 12 hours for 14 days

Usual Adult Dose for Salmonella Enteric Fever:

200 to 400 mg orally every 12 hours for 7 to 14 days

Usual Adult Dose for Salmonella Gastroenteritis:

200 to 400 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 3 days. However, most cases are self-limited, and prudent withholding of antibiotics does not appear to slow recovery in most patients.

Usual Adult Dose for Shigellosis:

200 to 400 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 3 to 5 days in severely ill patients.

Usual Adult Dose for Skin or Soft Tissue Infection:

Uncomplicated: 400 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 7 to 10 days, or for 3 days after acute inflammation disappears, depending on the nature and severity of the infection. For more severe infections, such as diabetic soft tissue infections, 14 to 21 days of therapy may be required.

Usual Adult Dose for Traveler's Diarrhea:

300 mg orally every 12 hours

Therapy should be continued for approximately 3 days. However, most cases are self-limited, and prudent withholding of antibiotics in mild cases does not appear to slow recovery in most patients.

Usual Adult Dose for Tuberculosis -- Active:

300 mg to 400 mg orally or IV every 12 hours

May be given in combination with at least 3 other active drugs for treatment of multi-drug resistant TB, or when the patient is intolerant of first-line agents. AFB smear and culture should be monitored monthly.

Duration: Treatment for TB should generally continue for 18 to 24 months, or for 12 to 18 months after culture results are negative.

Usual Adult Dose for Urinary Tract Infection:

Uncomplicated: 200 mg orally every 12 hours
Duration: 3 days for infections due to Escherichia coli or Klebsiella pneumoniae; 7 days for infections due to other organisms

Complicated: 200 mg orally every 12 hours for 10 days

What other drugs will affect ofloxacin?

Tell your doctor about all medicines you use, and those you start or stop using during your treatment with ofloxacin, especially:

  • theophylline;

  • a diuretic or "water pill";

  • heart rhythm medication--amiodarone, disopyramide, dofetilide, dronedarone, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol, and others;

  • medicine to treat depression or mental illness--amitriptylline, clomipramine, clozapine, desipramine, duloxetine, iloperidone, imipramine, nortriptyline, ziprasidone, and others; or

  • NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs)--aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve), celecoxib, diclofenac, indomethacin, meloxicam, and others.

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with ofloxacin, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about ofloxacin.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 9.02. Revision Date: 2014-04-13, 8:23:32 PM.

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