Side Effects when using Levaquin

November 12, 2012

Side Effects when using Levaquin

Levaquin is an antibiotic with the generic name of levofloxacin and belongs to a group of drugs called fluoroquinalones. This medication is used in the treatment of many common bacterial infections.

Levaquin can be used to treat a range of infections of gram positive and gram negative bacteria such as anthrax, pneumonia, prostatitis, acute sinusitis, kidney, skin and urinary tract infections. It can also be used to treat other infections. Doses of levaquin can be given as an IV administration, 20mg/ml oral liquid and 250mg, 500mg and 750mg capsules. However Levaquin side effects can be problematic.

Black Box Warnings

Taking fluoroquinalones such as Levquin may cause ruptures of the tendons. This tends to occur in groups of people who are over 60 years of age but can happen to groups of all ages. Tendon ruptures also occur in patients who have had an organ transplant or patients who are taking corticosteroid medication.

Common Side Effects when using Levaquin

Many people who are using Levaquin medication report they have experienced no side effects. One of the common Levaquin side effects is tendonitis. Should you experience any tendon pain it may indicate a tendon rupture. Stop using Levaquin and contact your doctor to discuss this effect. Other common side effects are insomnia, headaches and dizziness. Levaquin side effects which affect the gastrointestinal area are acid dyspepsia, nausea, constipation, diarrhea, vomiting and pain in the abdomen.

Serious Side Effects when using Levaquin

The manufacturer lists many possible Levaquin side effects. Rupture of the Achilles tendon is a unique side effect connected to the class of drugs in the fluoroquinalone family, e.g. Levaquin. Many patients have reported experiencing an infection of the bowel with C.difficile. This is a quite common Levaquin side effect. The symptoms of C.difficile colitis appear as abdominal pain and diarrhea with blood present and this can be life threatening. Allergic reactions such as vasculitis, anaphylasis and pneuomonitis can also be lethal. Other fatal conditions include a variety of bone marrow disorders such as myelosuppression and blood dyscrasias. Torsades de pointes, which is a serious cardiac arrhythmia and peripheral neuropathy is another serious side effect.

Unusual Side Effects when taking Levaquin

Tendon ruptures and tendonitis are Levaquin side effects which are solely associated with taking the fluoroquinalone group of antibiotics. Also included in this group of antibiotics alongside Levaquin are moxifloxacin, ciprofloxacin and ofloxacin.

Drug Interactions when taking Levaquin

For the list of interactions associated with taking Levaquin read the guidelines issued by the manufacturer. Consult with your doctor on any questions you may have on particular drug interactions.

Taking Levaquin is contraindicated for use with class la and class III anti-arrhythmics and phenothiazine group of drugs where an increased rate of cardiac arrest and serious arrhythmias has been experienced. Taking Warfarin greatly increases the prothrombin time which monitors the degree of anticoagulant effect. The dosage of warfarin may have to be altered if these two drugs are used together. Many of the HIV medications which are regularly prescribed can have serious interactions with Levaquin. Using Levaquin alongside corticosteroid medications may raise the chance of rupturing a tendon. There is a long list of interactions using the fluoroquinalone group of medicines. When using any drugs from this group check if it can be used with other medicines.

Lactation and Pregnancy

Levaquin is considered to be safe to take during lactation and is a category C drug during pregnancy.

Special Considerations when taking Levaquin

There are experts who think Levaquin tends to produce resistance to antibiotics compared to the other fluoroquinalone medicines. It is not recommended to use Levaquin in circumstances where ciprofloxacin could be used as a practical alternative. Ciprofloxacin is often recognized as an alternative to give patients who are suffering from infection of the prostate and infections of the urinary tract. As the list of possible drug interactions is extensive it is important for the possibility of interactions to be evaluated.

Resistance to antibiotics is becoming more common. Many experts suggest avoid using the fluoroquinalone group whenever there is another suitable antibiotic, they say that resistance to antibiotics is reduced by not using medication such as Levaquin.

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