Ampicillin and Sulbactam
Generic Name: Ampicillin and Sulbactam (am pi SIL in & SUL bak tam)
Brand Name: Unasyn
Medically reviewed on May 2, 2018.
Uses of Ampicillin and Sulbactam:
- It is used to treat bacterial infections.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Ampicillin and Sulbactam?
- If you have an allergy to ampicillin and sulbactam or any part of ampicillin and sulbactam.
- If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
- If you have mono.
- If you have turned yellow or had liver side effects with ampicillin and sulbactam before.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with ampicillin and sulbactam.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take ampicillin and sulbactam with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Ampicillin and Sulbactam?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take ampicillin and sulbactam. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Very bad and sometimes deadly allergic side effects have rarely happened. Talk with your doctor.
- This medicine may affect certain lab tests. Tell all of your health care providers and lab workers that you take ampicillin and sulbactam.
- If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), do not use Clinitest®. Use some other urine glucose testing like Clinistix® or Tes-Tape®.
- Do not use longer than you have been told. A second infection may happen.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using ampicillin and sulbactam while you are pregnant.
- Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.
How is this medicine (Ampicillin and Sulbactam) best taken?
Use ampicillin and sulbactam as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- It is given as a shot into a muscle or as an infusion into a vein over a period of time.
- It may be given as a shot into a vein.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Call your doctor to find out what to do.
See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- For females, vaginal yeast infection. Report itching or discharge.
- Redness or white patches in mouth or throat.
- It is common to have diarrhea when taking ampicillin and sulbactam. Rarely, a very bad form of diarrhea called Clostridium difficile (C diff)–associated diarrhea (CDAD) may occur. Sometimes, this has led to a deadly bowel problem (colitis). CDAD may happen while you are taking ampicillin and sulbactam or within a few months after you stop taking it. Call your doctor right away if you have stomach pain or cramps, very loose or watery stools, or bloody stools. Do not try to treat loose stools without first checking with your doctor.
- Very bad and sometimes deadly liver problems have happened with ampicillin and sulbactam. Call your doctor right away if you have signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
- A very bad skin reaction (Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis) may happen. It can cause very bad health problems that may not go away, and sometimes death. Get medical help right away if you have signs like red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin (with or without fever); red or irritated eyes; or sores in your mouth, throat, nose, or eyes.
What are some other side effects of Ampicillin and Sulbactam?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Loose stools (diarrhea).
- Pain where the shot was given.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Ampicillin and Sulbactam?
- If you need to store ampicillin and sulbactam at home, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist about how to store it.
Consumer information use
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
- Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
- Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about ampicillin and sulbactam, please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
More about ampicillin/sulbactam
- Ampicillin/sulbactam Side Effects
- During Pregnancy
- Dosage Information
- Drug Interactions
- Support Group
- Pricing & Coupons
- En Español
- 2 Reviews – Add your own review/rating
- Drug class: beta-lactamase inhibitors
Other brands: Unasyn
- Ampicillin Sodium and Sulbactam Sodium (AHFS Monograph)
- Ampicillin and Sulbactam Injection (FDA)
- Ampicillin and Sulbactam (Wolters Kluwer)