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penicillin V potassium

Pronunciation

Generic Name: penicillin V potassium (oral) (PEN i SIL in V poe TAS ee um)
Brand Name: PC Pen VK

What is penicillin V potassium?

Penicillin V potassium is a slow-onset antibiotic that fights bacteria in your body.

Penicillin V potassium is used to treat many different types of infections including strep and staph infections, pneumonia, rheumatic fever, and infections affecting the mouth or throat.

Penicillin V potassium is also used to prevent infections of the heart valves in people with certain heart conditions who need to have dental work or surgery.

Penicillin V potassium may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about penicillin V potassium?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to penicillin. Tell your doctor if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a cephalosporin antibiotic such as Ceftin, Cefzil, Omnicef, Keflex, and others.

Before taking penicillin V potassium, tell your doctor if you are allergic to cephalosporins such as Ceftin, Cefzil, Keflex, Omnicef, and others, or if you have asthma, kidney disease, a bleeding or blood clotting disorder, a history of diarrhea caused by taking antibiotics, or a history of any type of allergy.

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Penicillin V potassium can make birth control pills less effective, which may result in pregnancy. Before taking penicillin V potassium, tell your doctor if you use birth control pills.

Take this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Penicillin V potassium will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu.

Do not share this medication with another person, even if they have the same symptoms you have.

Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or has blood in it, call your doctor. Do not use any medicine to stop the diarrhea unless your doctor has told you to.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking penicillin V potassium?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to penicillin. Tell your doctor if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a cephalosporin antibiotic such as Ceftin, Cefzil, Omnicef, Keflex, and others.

To make sure you can safely take penicillin V potassium, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • asthma or a history of allergies;

  • kidney disease; or

  • if you are sick with severe vomiting or diarrhea.

FDA pregnancy category B. This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

Penicillin V potassium can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not take this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take penicillin V potassium?

Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

You may take penicillin V potassium with or without food.

Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well just before you measure a dose. To be sure you get the correct dose, measure the liquid with a marked measuring spoon or medicine cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Take this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Penicillin V potassium will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu.

Do not share this medication with another person, even if they have the same symptoms you have.

After you have finished your treatment with penicillin V potassium, your doctor may want to do tests to make sure your infection has completely cleared up.

Store the tablets at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

Store the liquid in a refrigerator. Do not freeze. Throw away any unused liquid after 14 days.

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 if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

Overdose symptoms may include some of the serious side effects listed in this medication guide.

What should I avoid while taking penicillin V potassium?

Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or has blood in it, call your doctor. Do not use any medicine to stop the diarrhea unless your doctor has told you to.

Penicillin V potassium side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • diarrhea that is watery or bloody;

  • urinating less than usual or not at all;

  • fever, swollen glands, sore throat, rash or itching, joint pain, general ill feeling;

  • skin rash, bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness;

  • pale or yellowed skin, dark colored urine, fever, confusion or weakness; or

  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin.

Less serious side effects are more likely to occur, such as:

  • nausea, vomiting, stomach pain;

  • swollen, black, or "hairy" tongue; or

  • vaginal itching or discharge.

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)

Penicillin V potassium dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Bacterial Infection:

Mild to moderate infections: 125 to 500 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours

Usual Adult Dose for Streptococcal Infection:

Mild to moderate infections of the upper respiratory tract and including scarlet fever and erysipelas: 125 to 250 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours for 10 days

Usual Adult Dose for Upper Respiratory Tract Infection:

Mild to moderate streptococcal infections of the upper respiratory tract: 125 to 250 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours for 10 days

Mild to moderate pneumococcal infections of the respiratory tract, including otitis media: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours until the patient has been afebrile for at least 2 days

Usual Adult Dose for Skin or Soft Tissue Infection:

Mild staphylococcal infections (penicillin G-sensitive): 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours

Usual Adult Dose for Fusospirochetosis:

Mild to moderate infections of the oropharynx: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours

Usual Adult Dose for Tonsillitis/Pharyngitis:

Streptococcal tonsillopharyngitis (primary prevention of rheumatic fever): 500 mg orally 2 to 3 times a day for 10 days

Usual Adult Dose for Rheumatic Fever Prophylaxis:

Secondary prevention of rheumatic fever (prevention of recurrence): 250 mg orally twice a day on a continuing basis

The manufacturer recommends 125 to 250 mg orally twice a day on a continuing basis for the prevention of recurrence following rheumatic fever and/or chorea.

For high-risk patients, penicillin G benzathine given every 3 weeks may be more effective and is recommended. Oral penicillin can be used for prevention in lower risk patients whose compliance can be ensured.

Usual Adult Dose for Otitis Media:

Mild to moderate pneumococcal infections: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours until the patient has been afebrile for at least 2 days

Usual Adult Dose for Pneumonia:

Mild to moderate infections: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours

Usual Adult Dose for Cutaneous Bacillus anthracis:

Treatment of mild, uncomplicated cutaneous anthrax (IV therapy not considered necessary): 200 to 500 mg orally 4 times a day

Duration: 5 to 10 days for naturally occurring or endemic exposures to anthrax; therapy should be continued for 60 days if cutaneous anthrax occurred as result of exposure to aerosolized B anthracis spores

Usual Adult Dose for Clostridial Infection:

Wound botulism: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours once the patient improves after treatment with aqueous penicillin G and debridement

Usual Adult Dose for Lyme Disease -- Erythema Chronicum Migrans:

250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours for 14 to 21 days

Amoxicillin and doxycycline are considered the oral drugs of choice.

Usual Adult Dose for Rat-bite Fever:

Mild infection: 500 mg orally every 6 hours
Duration: 10 to 14 days

Usual Pediatric Dose for Bacterial Infection:

Mild to moderate infections:
Greater than 1 month to less than 12 years: 25 to 50 mg/kg per day orally in divided doses every 6 to 8 hours
Maximum dose: 3 g/day

12 years or older: 125 to 500 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours

Usual Pediatric Dose for Streptococcal Infection:

Mild to moderate infections of the upper respiratory tract and including scarlet fever and erysipelas:
12 years or older: 125 to 250 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours for 10 days

Usual Pediatric Dose for Upper Respiratory Tract Infection:

Mild to moderate streptococcal infections of the upper respiratory tract:
12 years or older: 125 to 250 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours for 10 days

Mild to moderate pneumococcal infections of the respiratory tract, including otitis media:
12 years or older: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours until the patient has been afebrile for at least 2 days

Usual Pediatric Dose for Skin or Soft Tissue Infection:

Mild staphylococcal infections (penicillin G-sensitive):
12 years or older: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours

Usual Pediatric Dose for Fusospirochetosis:

Mild to moderate infections of the oropharynx:
12 years or older: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 to 8 hours

Usual Pediatric Dose for Tonsillitis/Pharyngitis:

Streptococcal tonsillopharyngitis (primary prevention of rheumatic fever):
Children 27 kg or less: 250 mg orally 2 to 3 times a day
Children greater than 27 kg and adolescents: 500 mg orally 2 to 3 times a day

Duration: 10 days

Usual Pediatric Dose for Rheumatic Fever Prophylaxis:

Secondary prevention of rheumatic fever (prevention of recurrence): 250 mg orally twice a day on a continuing basis

The manufacturer recommends 125 to 250 mg orally twice a day on a continuing basis for the prevention of recurrence following rheumatic fever and/or chorea.

For high-risk patients, penicillin G benzathine given every 3 weeks may be more effective and is recommended. Oral penicillin can be used for prevention in lower risk patients whose compliance can be ensured.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Otitis Media:

Mild to moderate pneumococcal infections:
12 years or older: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours until the patient has been afebrile for at least 2 days

Usual Pediatric Dose for Pneumonia:

Mild to moderate infections:
12 years or older: 250 to 500 mg orally every 6 hours

Usual Pediatric Dose for Cutaneous Bacillus anthracis:

Treatment of mild, uncomplicated cutaneous anthrax (IV therapy not considered necessary):
Less than 12 years: 25 to 50 mg/kg/day orally in 2 to 4 divided doses
12 years or older: 200 to 500 mg orally 4 times a day

Duration: 5 to 10 days for naturally occurring or endemic exposures to anthrax; therapy should be continued for 60 days if cutaneous anthrax occurred as result of exposure to aerosolized B anthracis spores

Initial therapy should be IV for young children (i.e., less than 2 years of age) and combination therapy should be considered since it is unknown if infants and young children are at greater risk of systemic dissemination of cutaneous anthrax.

What other drugs will affect penicillin V potassium?

Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • birth control pills;

  • methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall);

  • probenecid (Benemid); or

  • a tetracycline antibiotic, such as doxycycline (Doryx, Oracea, Periostat, Vibramycin), minocycline (Dynacin, Minocin, Solodyn, Vectrin), or tetracycline (Brodspec, Panmycin, Sumycin, Tetracap).

This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with penicillin V potassium. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about penicillin V potassium.
  • 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: 1.01. Revision Date: 2011-02-07, 12:29:29 PM.

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