Medically reviewed on June 7, 2018
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
- Powder for Suspension
- Tablet, Chewable
Therapeutic Class: Antibiotic
Pharmacologic Class: 3rd Generation Cephalosporin
Uses For This Medicine
Cefixime is used to treat bacterial infections in many different parts of the body. It belongs to the class of medicines known as cephalosporin antibiotics. It works by killing bacteria or preventing their growth. However, cefixime will not work for colds, flu, or other virus infections.
Cefixime is available only with your doctor's prescription.
Before Using This Medicine
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For cefixime, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to cefixime or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of cefixime in children. However, safety and efficacy have not been established in children younger than 6 months of age.
Although appropriate studies on the relationship of age to the effects of cefixime have not been performed in the geriatric population, no geriatric-specific problems have been documented to date.
|All Trimesters||B||Animal studies have revealed no evidence of harm to the fetus, however, there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR animal studies have shown an adverse effect, but adequate studies in pregnant women have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus.|
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with Medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking cefixime, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using cefixime with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Cholera Vaccine, Live
Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other Medical Problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of cefixime. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Allergy to penicillins, or history of or
- Bleeding problems—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
- Kidney disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.
- Phenylketonuria—The chewable tablet contains phenylalanine, which can make this condition worse.
Proper Use of This Medicine
Take cefixime only as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.
Swallow the capsule whole. Do not cut, break, or chew it.
You may split or cut the tablet in half. The chewable tablet should be crushed or chewed before swallowing.
Shake the oral liquid well before each use. Measure the medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup. The average household teaspoon may not hold the right amount of liquid.
Keep using cefixime for the full treatment time, even if you feel better after the first few doses. Your infection may not clear up if you stop using the medicine too soon.
The dose of cefixime will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of cefixime. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For oral dosage forms (capsules, suspension, chewable tablets, or tablets):
- For infections:
- Adults and children older than 12 years of age and weighing more than 50 kilograms (kg)—400 milligrams (mg) once a day or 200 mg every 12 hours.
- Children 6 months to 12 years of age—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is usually 8 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight per day, taken as a single dose or divided in two doses (4 mg/kg of body weight every 12 hours).
- Children up to 6 months of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For infections:
If you miss a dose of cefixime, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Store the oral liquid either at room temperature or in the refrigerator. Throw away any unused medicine after 14 days. Keep it tightly closed.
Precautions While Using This Medicine
If your or your child's symptoms do not improve within a few days, or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
Cefixime may cause serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Call your doctor right away if you or your child has a rash, itching, hoarseness, trouble breathing, trouble swallowing, or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth while you are using cefixime.
Cefixime may cause diarrhea, and in some cases it can be severe. Do not take any medicine or give medicine to your child to treat diarrhea without first checking with your doctor. Diarrhea medicines may make the diarrhea worse or make it last longer. If you have any questions about this or if mild diarrhea continues or gets worse, check with your doctor.
Before you or your child has any medical tests, tell the medical doctor in charge that you are using cefixime. The results of some tests may be affected by cefixime.
Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.
This Medicine Side Effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine 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:
- loose or frequent stools
- Abdominal or stomach pain
- black, tarry stools
- bleeding gums
- blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
- blood in the urine or stools
- chest pain
- clay-colored stools
- dark urine
- decreased urine output
- difficulty with swallowing
- fast heartbeat
- feeling of discomfort
- general tiredness and weakness
- hives, itching, or skin rash
- inflammation of the joints
- joint or muscle pain
- large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
- light-colored stools
- loss of appetite
- lower back or side pain
- muscle aches
- muscle twitching
- nausea and vomiting
- painful or difficult urination
- pale skin
- pinpoint red spots on the skin
- puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
- rapid weight gain
- red skin lesions, often with a purple center
- red, irritated eyes
- sore throat
- sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
- swelling of the face, ankles, or hands
- swollen glands
- swollen lymph glands
- tightness in the chest
- unpleasant breath odor
- unusual bleeding or bruising
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- upper right abdominal or stomach pain
- vomiting of blood
- yellow eyes or skin
Incidence not known
- Abdominal or stomach cramps or tenderness
- back, leg, or stomach pains
- cough or hoarseness
- coughing up blood
- diarrhea, watery and severe, which may also be bloody
- general body swelling
- increased menstrual flow or vaginal bleeding
- increased thirst
- prolonged bleeding from cuts
- red or black, tarry stools
- red or dark brown urine
- sudden decrease in the amount of urine
- unpleasant breath odor
- unusual weight loss
Some side effects 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:
- Acid or sour stomach
- excess air or gas in the stomach or intestines
- full feeling
- hives or welts
- itching of the vagina or genital area itching or pain of the genital area
- pain during sexual intercourse
- passing gas
- redness of the skin
- stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
- thick, white vaginal discharge with no odor or with a mild odor
- white patches in the mouth or throat or on the tongue
- white patches with diaper rash
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
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More about cefixime
- Cefixime Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Drug Interactions
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- Drug class: third generation cephalosporins
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