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Cipro Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Cipro (ciprofloxacin) is a quinolone antibiotic. Cipro is available as a generic drug and is prescribed to treat infections of the skin, lungs, airways, bones, joints, and urinary tract infections caused by susceptible bacteria. Common side effects of Cipro include
- stomach upset
- abdominal pain
- blurred vision
- sleep problems (insomnia or nightmares), and
Tell your doctor if you experience serious side effects of Cipro including severe dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeats; sudden pain, snapping or popping sound, bruising, swelling, tenderness, stiffness, or loss of movement in any of your joints; watery or bloody diarrhea; confusion, hallucinations, depression, unusual thoughts or behavior; seizure (convulsions); severe headache, ringing in your ears, pain behind your eyes; pale or yellow skin, dark colored urine, fever, weakness; urinating less than usual or not at all; easy bruising or bleeding; numbness, tingling, or unusual pain anywhere in your body; the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild; or severe skin reaction -- fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain, followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling.
Our Cipro Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What is Patient Information in Detail?
Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.
Cipro in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop using ciprofloxacin and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
- severe dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeats;
- sudden pain, snapping or popping sound, bruising, swelling, tenderness, stiffness, or loss of movement in any of your joints;
- diarrhea that is watery or bloody;
- confusion, hallucinations, depression, unusual thoughts or behavior;
- seizure (convulsions);
- severe headache, ringing in your ears, dizziness, nausea, vision problems, pain behind your eyes;
- pale or yellowed skin, dark colored urine, fever, weakness;
- urinating less than usual or not at all;
- easy bruising or bleeding;
- numbness, tingling, or unusual pain anywhere in your body;
- the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild; or
- severe skin reaction -- fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain, followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling.
Less serious side effects may include:
- nausea, vomiting;
- dizziness or drowsiness;
- blurred vision;
- feeling nervous, anxious, or agitated; or
- sleep problems (insomnia or nightmares).
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Cipro (Ciprofloxacin)
What is Patient Information Overview?
A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.
Cipro Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects
Nausea, diarrhea, dizziness, lightheadedness, headache, and trouble sleeping may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: skin that sunburns more easily (sun sensitivity), unusual bruising/bleeding, signs of a new infection (such as new/persistent fever, persistent sore throat), unusual change in the amount of urine, change in color of urine (red/pink urine), signs of liver problems (such as unusual tiredness, stomach/abdominal pain, persistent nausea/vomiting, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine).
Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: severe/persistent headache, vision changes, shaking (tremors), seizures, severe dizziness, fainting, fast/irregular heartbeat, mental/mood changes (such as anxiety, confusion, hallucinations, depression, rare thoughts of suicide).
Rarely, this medication may cause serious, possibly permanent, nerve problems (peripheral neuropathy). Stop taking ciprofloxacin and tell your doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms: pain/numbness/burning/tingling/weakness in your arms, hands, legs, or feet, changes in how you sense touch/pain/temperature/vibration/body position.
This medication may rarely cause a severe intestinal condition (Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea) due to a type of resistant bacteria. This condition may occur during treatment or weeks to months after treatment has stopped. Tell your doctor right away if you develop: persistent diarrhea, abdominal or stomach pain/cramping, blood/mucus in your stool.
Do not use anti-diarrhea products or narcotic pain medications if you have any of these symptoms because these products may make them worse.
Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new yeast infection. Contact your doctor if you notice white patches in your mouth, a change in vaginal discharge, or other new symptoms.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Read the entire patient information overview for Cipro (Ciprofloxacin)
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Cipro FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
Adverse Reactions in Adult Patients
During clinical investigations with oral and parenteral ciprofloxacin, 49,038 patients received courses of the drug. Most of the adverse events reported were described as only mild or moderate in severity, abated soon after the drug was discontinued, and required no treatment. Ciprofloxacin was discontinued because of an adverse event in 1% of orally treated patients.
The most frequently reported drug related events, from clinical trials of all formulations, all dosages, all drug-therapy durations, and for all indications of ciprofloxacin therapy were nausea (2.5%), diarrhea (1.6%), liver function tests abnormal (1.3%), vomiting (1%), and rash (1%).
Additional medically important events that occurred in less than 1% of ciprofloxacin patients are listed below.
BODY AS A WHOLE: headache, abdominal pain/discomfort, foot pain, pain, pain in extremities, injection site reaction (ciprofloxacin intravenous)
CARDIOVASCULAR: palpitation, atrial flutter, ventricular ectopy, syncope, hypertension, angina pectoris, myocardial infarction, cardiopulmonary arrest, cerebral thrombosis, phlebitis, tachycardia, migraine, hypotension
CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM: restlessness, dizziness, lightheadedness, insomnia, nightmares, hallucinations, manic reaction, irritability, tremor, ataxia, convulsive seizures (including status epilepticus), grand mal convulsion, lethargy, drowsiness, weakness, malaise, anorexia, phobia, depersonalization, depression (potentially culminating in self-injurious behavior, such as suicidal ideations/thoughts and attempted or completed suicide), paresthesia, abnormal gait
HEMIC/LYMPHATIC: lymphadenopathy, petechia
SKIN/HYPERSENSITIVITY: allergic reaction, pruritus, urticaria, photosensitivity/phototoxicity reaction, flushing, fever, chills, angioedema, edema of the face, neck, lips, conjunctivae or hands, cutaneous candidiasis, hyperpigmentation, erythema nodosum, sweating
In several instances nausea, vomiting, tremor, irritability, or palpitation were judged by investigators to be related to elevated serum levels of theophylline possibly as a result of drug interaction with ciprofloxacin.
In randomized, double-blind controlled clinical trials comparing ciprofloxacin tablets (500 mg BID) to cefuroxime axetil (250 mg - 500 mg BID) and to clarithromycin (500 mg BID) in patients with respiratory tract infections, ciprofloxacin demonstrated a CNS adverse event profile comparable to the control drugs.
Adverse Reactions in Pediatric Patients
Ciprofloxacin, administered IV and /or orally, was compared to a cephalosporin for treatment of complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI) or pyelonephritis in pediatric patients 1 to 17 years of age (mean age of 6 ± 4 years). The trial was conducted in the US, Canada, Argentina, Peru, Costa Rica, Mexico, South Africa, and Germany. The duration of therapy was 10 to 21 days (mean duration of treatment was 11 days with a range of 1 to 88 days). The primary objective of the study was to assess musculoskeletal and neurological safety within 6 weeks of therapy and through one year of follow-up in the 335 ciprofloxacin- and 349 comparator-treated patients enrolled.
An Independent Pediatric Safety Committee (IPSC) reviewed all cases of musculoskeletal adverse events as well as all patients with an abnormal gait or abnormal joint exam (baseline or treatment-emergent). These events were evaluated in a comprehensive fashion and included such conditions as arthralgia, abnormal gait, abnormal joint exam, joint sprains, leg pain, back pain, arthrosis, bone pain, pain, myalgia, arm pain, and decreased range of motion in a joint. The affected joints included: knee, elbow, ankle, hip, wrist, and shoulder. Within 6 weeks of treatment initiation, the rates of these events were 9.3% (31/335) in the ciprofloxacin-treated group versus 6 % (21/349) in comparator-treated patients. The majority of these events were mild or moderate in intensity. All musculoskeletal events occurring by 6 weeks resolved (clinical resolution of signs and symptoms), usually within 30 days of end of treatment. Radiological evaluations were not routinely used to confirm resolution of the events. The events occurred more frequently in ciprofloxacin-treated patients than control patients, regardless of whether they received IV or oral therapy. Ciprofloxacin-treated patients were more likely to report more than one event and on more than one occasion compared to control patients. These events occurred in all age groups and the rates were consistently higher in the ciprofloxacin group compared to the control group. At the end of 1 year, the rate of these events reported at any time during that period was 13.7% (46/335) in the ciprofloxacin-treated group versus 9.5% (33/349) comparator-treated patients.
An adolescent female discontinued ciprofloxacin for wrist pain that developed during treatment. An MRI performed 4 weeks later showed a tear in the right ulnar fibrocartilage. A diagnosis of overuse syndrome secondary to sports activity was made, but a contribution from ciprofloxacin cannot be excluded. The patient recovered by 4 months without surgical intervention.
Findings Involving Joint or Peri-articular Tissues as
Assessed by the IPSC
|All Patients (within 6 weeks)||31/335 (9.3%)||21/349 (6%)|
|95% Confidence Interval*||(-0.8%, +7.2%)|
|≥ 12 months < 24 months||1/36 (2.8%)||0/41|
|≥ 2 years < 6 years||5/124 (4%)||3/118 (2.5%)|
|≥ 6 years < 12 years||18/143 (12.6%)||12/153 (7.8%)|
|≥ 12 years to 17 years||7/32 (21.9%)||6/37 (16.2 %)|
|All Patients (within 1 year)||46/335 (13.7%)||33/349 (9.5%)|
|95% Confidence Interval*||(-0.6%, + 9.1%)|
|*The study was designed to demonstrate that the arthropathy rate for the ciprofloxacin group did not exceed that of the control group by more than + 6%. At both the 6 week and 1 year evaluations, the 95% confidence interval indicated that it could not be concluded that ciprofloxacin group had findings comparable to the control group.|
The incidence rates of neurological events within 6 weeks of treatment initiation were 3% (9/335) in the ciprofloxacin group versus 2% (7/349) in the comparator group and included dizziness, nervousness, insomnia, and somnolence.
In this trial, the overall incidence rates of adverse events regardless of relationship to study drug and within 6 weeks of treatment initiation were 41% (138/335) in the ciprofloxacin group versus 31% (109/349) in the comparator group. The most frequent events were gastrointestinal: 15% (50/335) of ciprofloxacin patients compared to 9% (31/349) of comparator patients. Serious adverse events were seen in 7.5% (25/335) of ciprofloxacin-treated patients compared to 5.7% (20/349) of control patients. Discontinuation of drug due to an adverse event was observed in 3% (10/335) of ciprofloxacin-treated patients versus 1.4% (5/349) of comparator patients. Other adverse events that occurred in at least 1% of ciprofloxacin patients were diarrhea 4.8%, vomiting 4.8%, abdominal pain 3.3%, accidental injury 3%, rhinitis 3%, dyspepsia 2.7%, nausea 2.7%, fever 2.1%, asthma 1.8% and rash 1.8%.
In addition to the events reported in pediatric patients in clinical trials, it should be expected that events reported in adults during clinical trials or postmarketing experience may also occur in pediatric patients.
Postmarketing Adverse Event Reports
The following adverse events have been reported from worldwide marketing experience with fluoroquinolones, including ciprofloxacin. Because these events are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure. Decisions to include these events in labeling are typically based on one or more of the following factors: (1) seriousness of the event, (2) frequency of the reporting, or (3) strength of causal connection to the drug.
Acute generalized exanthematous pustulosis (AGEP), Agitation, agranulocytosis, albuminuria, anaphylactic reactions (including life-threatening anaphylactic shock), anosmia, candiduria, cholesterol elevation (serum), confusion, constipation, delirium, dyspepsia, dysphagia, erythema multiforme, exfoliative dermatitis, fixed eruption, flatulence, glucose elevation (blood), hemolytic anemia, hepatic failure (including fatal cases), hepatic necrosis, hyperesthesia, hypertonia, hypesthesia, hypotension (postural), International Normalized Ratio (INR) increased (in patients treated with Vitamin K antagonists), jaundice, marrow depression (life threatening), methemoglobinemia, moniliasis (oral, gastrointestinal, vaginal), myalgia, myasthenia, exacerbation of myasthenia gravis, myoclonus, nystagmus, pancreatitis, pancytopenia (life threatening or fatal outcome), peripheral neuropathy that may be irreversible, phenytoin alteration (serum), photosensitivity/phototoxicity reaction, polyneuropathy, potassium elevation (serum), prothrombin time prolongation or decrease, pseudomembranous colitis (The onset of pseudomembranous colitis symptoms may occur during or after antimicrobial treatment.), psychosis (toxic), QT prolongation, renal calculi, serum sickness like reaction, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, taste loss, tendinitis, tendon rupture, torsade de pointes, toxic epidermal necrolysis (Lyell's Syndrome), triglyceride elevation (serum), twitching, vaginal candidiasis, vasculitis and ventricular arrhythmia. (See PRECAUTIONS.)
Adverse events were also reported by persons who received ciprofloxacin for anthrax post-exposure prophylaxis following the anthrax bioterror attacks of October 2001. (See also Inhalational Anthrax-Additional Information.)
Adverse Laboratory Changes: Changes in laboratory parameters listed as adverse events without regard to drug relationship are listed below:
Other changes occurring in less than 0.1% of courses were: elevation of serum gammaglutamyl transferase, elevation of serum amylase, reduction in blood glucose, elevated uric acid, decrease in hemoglobin, anemia, bleeding diathesis, increase in blood monocytes, and leukocytosis.
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Cipro (Ciprofloxacin)
Additional Cipro Information
Cipro - User Reviews
Cipro User Reviews
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