Kanamycin Side Effects

Some side effects of kanamycin may not be reported. Always consult your doctor or healthcare specialist for medical advice. You may also report side effects to the FDA.

For the Consumer

Applies to kanamycin: oral capsule

Other dosage forms:

Along with its needed effects, kanamycin 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 while taking kanamycin:

Rare - with long-term use and high doses
  • Any loss of hearing
  • clumsiness
  • dizziness
  • greatly decreased frequency of urination or amount of urine
  • increased thirst
  • ringing or buzzing or a feeling of fullness in the ears
  • unsteadiness

Some side effects of kanamycin 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
  • Diarrhea
  • nausea or vomiting
Rare - with prolonged treatment
  • Increased amount of gas
  • light-colored, frothy, fatty-appearing stools

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to kanamycin: compounding powder, injectable solution, oral capsule

General

The major toxic effects associated with kanamycin therapy are ototoxicity and nephrotoxicity. It is considered one of the more toxic aminoglycosides.

Nervous system

Nervous system side effects have included neuromuscular blockade, ototoxicity resulting in loss of vestibular function secondary to hair cell damage, and irreversible or partially reversible bilateral hearing loss. Nystagmus, vertigo, nausea, vomiting, and acute Meniere's syndrome are signs of vestibular dysfunction. Cochlear damage may be asymptomatic and may initially manifest as minor changes in audiometric test results at higher frequencies. Aminoglycosides have been associated with acute muscular paralysis, apnea, peripheral neuropathy and encephalopathy (numbness, paresthesia, muscle twitching, seizures), and myasthenia gravis-like syndrome. Neurotoxicity may occur after intrapleural, intraperitoneal, or parenteral administration. Patients with renal impairment may be at a higher risk.

Renal

Renal side effects have included nephrotoxicity, albuminuria, presence of red and white cells and granular casts, azotemia, oliguria, and increased serum creatinine and BUN.

Dermatologic

Dermatologic reactions have included skin rash.

Gastrointestinal

Gastrointestinal side effects have included nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Local

Local reactions have included pain at the injection site after intramuscular injection.

Metabolic

Metabolic side effects associated with prolonged kanamycin treatment have included malabsorption syndrome manifested as increased fecal fat, decreased serum carotene, and decreased xylose absorption.

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