Generic Name: cefoxitin (sef-OX-i-tin)
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Oct 5, 2020.
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
- Powder for Solution
Therapeutic Class: Antibiotic
Pharmacologic Class: 2nd Generation Cephalosporin
Uses for cefoxitin
Cefoxitin injection is used to treat bacterial infections in many different parts of the body. Cefoxitin is also given before certain types of surgery to prevent infections.
Cefoxitin injection belongs to the class of medicines known as cephalosporin antibiotics. It works by killing bacteria or preventing their growth. However, cefoxitin will not work for colds, flu, or other virus infections.
Cefoxitin is available only with your doctor's prescription.
Before using cefoxitin
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 cefoxitin, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to cefoxitin 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 cefoxitin injection in children. However, safety and efficacy have not been established in children younger than 3 months old.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of cefoxitin injection in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related kidney problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving cefoxitin injection.
Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during 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 receiving cefoxitin, 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 cefoxitin 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 cefoxitin. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Colitis (inflammation in gut), history of or
- Diarrhea, severe, history of or
- Seizures—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.
Proper use of cefoxitin
A nurse or other trained health professional will give you cefoxitin. Cefoxitin is given through a needle placed in one of your veins.
Precautions while using cefoxitin
If your symptoms or your child's symptoms do not improve within a few days, or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
Cefoxitin injection 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 have any medical tests, tell the medical doctor in charge that you are receiving cefoxitin. The results of some tests may be affected by cefoxitin.
Cefoxitin 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 or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- Changes in skin color
- swelling of the foot or leg
- decreased urine output
- muscle twitching
- rapid weight gain
- swelling of the face, ankles, or hands
- unusual tiredness or weakness
Incidence not known
- Abdominal or stomach cramps or tenderness
- back, leg, or stomach pains
- bleeding and bruising
- bleeding gums
- blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
- bloody or cloudy urine
- bloody, black, or tarry stools
- chest pain
- clay-colored stools
- cloudy urine
- coughing up blood
- cracks in the skin
- dark urine
- decrease in urine output or decrease in urine-concentrating ability
- diarrhea, watery and severe, which may also be bloody
- difficult or labored breathing
- difficult or painful urination
- difficulty with breathing, chewing, swallowing, or talking
- double vision
- drooping eyelids
- fast heartbeat
- feeling of discomfort
- general body swelling
- greatly decreased frequency of urination or amount of urine
- high fever
- increased menstrual flow or vaginal bleeding
- increased thirst
- inflammation of the joints
- itching of the vagina or genital area
- joint or muscle pain
- large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
- loss of appetite
- loss of heat from the body
- muscle aches
- muscle weakness
- pain during sexual intercourse
- pale skin
- prolonged bleeding from cuts
- puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
- red or black, tarry stools
- red or dark brown urine
- red skin lesions, often with a purple center
- red, irritated eyes
- red, swollen skin
- scaly skin
- severe tiredness
- shortness of breath
- sore throat
- sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
- sudden decrease in the amount of urine
- swelling of the feet or lower legs
- swollen lymph glands
- swollen or painful glands
- thick, white vaginal discharge with no odor or with a mild odor
- tightness in the chest
- troubled breathing with exertion
- unexplained bleeding or bruising
- unpleasant breath odor
- unusual bleeding or bruising
- unusual weight loss
- vomiting of blood
- yellowing of the eyes or skin
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:
- Red streaks on the skin
- swelling, tenderness, or pain at the injection site
Incidence not known
- Hives or welts
- redness of the skin
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.
More about cefoxitin
- Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Drug Interactions
- Pricing & Coupons
- En Español
- Drug class: second generation cephalosporins
- Other brands
Related treatment guides
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.