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All about: Macrodantin

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Generic Name: nitrofurantoin (oral) (NYE troe fue RAN toin)
Brand Names: Furadantin, Macrobid, Macrodantin

What is nitrofurantoin?

Nitrofurantoin is an antibiotic that fights bacteria in the body.

Nitrofurantoin is used to treat urinary tract infections.

Nitrofurantoin may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about nitrofurantoin?

Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as: feeling short of breath (even with mild exertion), fever, chills, cough, chest pain, yellowing of the skin or eyes; pale skin, unusual weakness, numbness or tingling, or diarrhea that is watery or bloody.

Avoid using antacids without your doctor's advice. Use only the specific type of antacid your doctor recommends. Antacids contain different medicines and some types can make it harder for your body to absorb nitrofurantoin.

Take this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Nitrofurantoin will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu. Take nitrofurantoin with food or milk.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking nitrofurantoin?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to nitrofurantoin, or have certain conditions. Be sure your doctor knows if you have:
  • severe kidney disease;

  • if you are urinating less than usual or not at all; or

  • if you are in the last 2 to 4 weeks of pregnancy.

Before taking this medication, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

  • kidney disease,

  • anemia,

  • diabetes,

  • glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency; or

  • any type of debilitating disease.

If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to take nitrofurantoin, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.

FDA pregnancy category B. This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby, unless it is used during the last 2 to 4 weeks of pregnancy. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Nitrofurantoin passes into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not take this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast feeding a baby. Do not give nitrofurantoin to a child younger than 12 years old.

How should I take nitrofurantoin?

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take it in larger amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Take each dose with a full glass of water. Take nitrofurantoin with food or milk. Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well before measuring a dose. To ensure that you get the correct dose, measure the suspension with a dose-measuring spoon or dropper, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist where you can get one.

You may mix your liquid dose with water, milk, or fruit juice to make it easier to swallow. Drink the entire mixture right away.

Take this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Nitrofurantoin will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu.

To be sure this medication is not causing harmful effects, your kidney function may need to be tested. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.

This medication can cause you to have unusual results with certain urine glucose (sugar) tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using nitrofurantoin.

Store this medication at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to take the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

Overdose symptoms may include nausea or vomiting.

What should I avoid while taking nitrofurantoin?

Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or has blood in it, call your doctor. Do not use any medicine to stop the diarrhea unless your doctor has told you to.

Avoid using antacids without your doctor's advice. Use only the specific type of antacid your doctor recommends. Antacids contain different medicines and some types can make it harder for your body to absorb nitrofurantoin.

Nitrofurantoin side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
  • shortness of breath, running out of breath easily;

  • fever, chills, cough, chest pain;

  • jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);

  • pale skin, easy bruising, unusual weakness;

  • numbness or tingling; or

  • diarrhea that is watery or bloody.

Less serious side effects include:

  • rust-colored or brownish urine;

  • headache;

  • nausea, vomiting, upset stomach;

  • bloating or gas, constipation;

  • feeling dizzy or drowsy;

  • blurred vision; or

  • vaginal itching or discharge.

This list is not complete and other side effects may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect.

What other drugs will affect nitrofurantoin?

Before taking nitrofurantoin, tell your doctor if you are taking:

  • magnesium salicylate (Doan's Pills, Mobidin, Momentum);

  • choline magnesium salicylate (Tricosal, Trilisate);

  • probenecid (Benemid); or

  • sulfinpyrazone (Anturane).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with nitrofurantoin. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about nitrofurantoin.

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.07. Revision Date: 08/10/2007 11:20:46 AM.

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