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Doripenem Side Effects

For the Consumer

Applies to doripenem: intravenous powder for suspension

In addition to its needed effects, some unwanted effects may be caused by doripenem. In the event that any of these side effects do occur, they may require medical attention.

If any of the following side effects occur while taking doripenem, check with your doctor or nurse immediately:

More common:
  • Bluish color
  • diarrhea
  • pain, tenderness, or swelling of the foot or leg
  • pale skin
  • troubled breathing with exertion
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
Less common:
  • Abdominal or stomach cramps, pain, or tenderness
  • bloody urine
  • decreased frequency or amount of urine
  • fever
  • increased blood pressure
  • increased thirst
  • itching or pain of the vagina or genital area
  • loss of appetite
  • lower back or side pain
  • nausea or vomiting
  • sore mouth or tongue
  • swelling of the face, fingers, or lower legs
  • thick, white vaginal discharge with mild or no odor
  • troubled breathing
  • watery and severe diarrhea, which may also be bloody
  • weight gain
  • white patches in the mouth or on the tongue
Incidence not known:
  • Blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
  • chills
  • cough
  • difficulty with swallowing or sore throat
  • dizziness
  • fast heartbeat
  • itching
  • joint or muscle pain
  • loss of bladder control
  • muscle spasm or jerking of extremities
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • red skin lesions, often with a purple center
  • red, irritated eyes
  • skin rash or hives
  • sores, ulcers, or white spots in the mouth or on the lips
  • sudden loss of consciousness
  • tightness in the chest

Severity: Minor

Some of the side effects that can occur with doripenem may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

More common:
  • Headache

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to doripenem: intravenous powder for injection


The safety report of doripenem is based on 1338 adult patients receiving the indicated dosing regimen. The most common side effects (5% or greater) reported with doripenem were anemia, headache, nausea, diarrhea, rash, elevated hepatic enzymes, and phlebitis. During clinical studies, side effects led to discontinuation of doripenem in 4.1% of patients.[Ref]

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (3% to 16%)
Postmarketing reports: Seizure[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Nausea (4% to 12%), diarrhea (6% to 12%)
Common (1% to 10%): Oral candidiasis (1% to 3%)
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Clostridium difficile colitis (1% or less)[Ref]


Serious and sometimes fatal hypersensitivity (anaphylactic) reactions have been reported with beta-lactams.[Ref]

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hypersensitivity reactions (less than 1%)
Frequency not reported: Allergic dermatitis
Postmarketing reports: Anaphylaxis[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Anemia (2% to 10%)
Postmarketing reports: Neutropenia, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Phlebitis (2% to 8%)[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Elevated hepatic enzymes (includes elevated alanine aminotransferase, elevated aspartate aminotransferase, elevated transaminases, ALT or AST at or below ULN at baseline increasing to greater than 5 times ULN at end of treatment; 2% to 7%)[Ref]


The incidence of rash was higher in patients receiving doses greater than the approved dose compared to those receiving the approved dose. The rash resolved within 10 days after doripenem was stopped.

Serious skin reactions have been reported with beta-lactams.[Ref]

Common (1% to 10%): Rash (1% to 6%), pruritus (1% to 3%)
Frequency not reported: Erythema, macular/papular eruptions, bullous dermatitis, urticaria, erythema multiforme
Postmarketing reports: Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Vulvomycotic infection (up to 2%)


Frequency not reported: Pneumonitis
Postmarketing reports: Interstitial pneumonia[Ref]

Pneumonitis has been reported when doripenem was administered via inhalation.[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Renal impairment/renal failure (regardless of causality)[Ref]


1. "Doripenem (Doribax)--a new parenteral carbapenem." Med Lett Drugs Ther 50 (2008): 5-7

2. "Product Information. Doribax (doripenem)." Ortho McNeil Pharmaceutical, Raritan, NJ.

3. Chastre J, Wunderink R, Prokocimer P, Lee M, Kaniga K, Friedland I "Efficacy and safety of intravenous infusion of doripenem versus imipenem in ventilator-associated pneumonia: a multicenter, randomized study." Crit Care Med 36 (2008): 1089-96

4. "Doripenem (doribax)--a new parenteral carbapenem." Obstet Gynecol 111 (2008): 1206-7

Not all side effects for doripenem may be reported. You should always consult a doctor or healthcare professional for medical advice. Side effects can be reported to the FDA here.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. 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 substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.