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Flagyl

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Flagyl

Flagyl Side Effects Center

Medical Editor: Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD

Flagyl, Flagyl ER and Flagyl Injection (metronidazole) are all almost identical antimicrobial drugs that differ mainly in design for use; oral (Flagyl,) oral extended release (Flagyl ER) or intravenous (Flagyl injection). This drug is available as a generic termed metronidazole. These preparations are designed to treat bacterial vaginosis (mainly Flagyl ER), trichomonas, amebiasis and anaerobic bacterial infections. The most common side effects for these three preparations of Flagyl are nausea; occasionally abdominal cramps, vomiting, diarrhea or constipation, headache, and anorexia occur. Most clinicians should have their laboratories check to see if the antimicrobial agent is effective against the microbes, especially bacteria, it is directed against.

Flagyl is supplied in 250 and 500 mg strength tablets, Flagyl ER is available in 750 mg strength tablets, and Flagyl Injection in 500 mg strength in a buffered 100 ml vial. Dosage is quite variable and dependent upon the severity of disease and other considerations made by the treating physician. Most of the serious side effects may occur with any of these three preparations of Flagyl. Uncomfortable side effects that may become serious are fevers, pain with urination and mouth sores; most serious side effects are paresthesias that may become permanent, encephalopathy, and seizures. Flagyl may cause liver enzyme levels to increase; lithium and creatinine levels should be checked to avoid lithium toxicity or renal compromise. Alcohol may increase the side effects of Flagyl. Patients on disulfiram should not take Flagyl until they have had a two week interval without taking disulfiram, especially alcoholic patients, to avoid psychotic reactions. Treatment in pregnant women (during first 3 months is not advised) or women who are breastfeeding should only be done if the benefits outweigh the potential problems; Flagyl levels approach serum levels in breast milk. Except for use in amebiasis, studies in pediatric patients are not available; Flagyl ER has no pediatric studies.

Our Flagyl, Flagyl ER and Flagyl Injection Side Effects Drug Centers provide 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.

Flagyl in Detail - Patient Information: 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:

  • numbness or tingling in your hands or feet;
  • white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips;
  • pain or burning when you urinate;
  • diarrhea that is watery or bloody;
  • vision problems, pain behind your eyes;
  • trouble concentrating, slurred speech, mood or behavior changes, tremors, muscle twitching, seizure (convulsions);
  • fever, chills, muscle pain, confusion, headache, sore throat, neck stiffness, increased sensitivity to light, drowsiness, nausea and vomiting; 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:

  • stomach pain, diarrhea;
  • dizziness, loss of balance;
  • vaginal itching or discharge;
  • dry mouth or unpleasant metallic taste;
  • cough, sneezing, runny or stuffy nose; or
  • swollen or sore tongue.

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 Flagyl (Metronidazole) »

What is Patient Information Overview?

A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.

Flagyl Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects

SIDE EFFECTS: Dizziness, headache, diarrhea, nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, constipation, changes in taste, and dry mouth may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

This drug may cause urine to darken in color. This is harmless.

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 immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: unsteadiness, seizures, mental/mood changes (such as confusion), numbness/tingling of hands/feet, painful urination.

Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: eye pain, severe/persistent headache, sudden vision changes, stiff/painful neck, sore throat, persistent fever, unusual bleeding/bruising, severe stomach pain, persistent nausea/vomiting.

Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new vaginal yeast infection (oral or vaginal fungal 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 unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction may include: 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 Flagyl (Metronidazole)»

What is Prescribing information?

The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.

Flagyl FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
(Adverse Reactions)

SIDE EFFECTS

The most serious adverse reactions reported in patients treated with Flagyl (metronidazole) have been convulsive seizures, encephalopathy, aseptic meningitis, optic and peripheral neuropathy, the latter characterized mainly by numbness or paresthesia of an extremity. Since persistent peripheral neuropathy has been reported in some patients receiving prolonged administration of Flagyl (metronidazole) , patients should be specifically warned about these reactions and should be told to stop the drug and report immediately to their physicians if any neurologic symptoms occur.

The most common adverse reactions reported have been referable to the gastrointestinal tract, particularly nausea reported by about 12% of patients, sometimes accompanied by headache, anorexia, and occasionally vomiting; diarrhea; epigastric distress; and abdominal cramping. Constipation has also been reported.

The following reactions have also been reported during treatment with Flagyl (metronidazole):

Mouth: A sharp, unpleasant metallic taste is not unusual. Furry tongue, glossitis, and stomatitis have occurred; these may be associated with a sudden overgrowth of Candida which may occur during therapy.

Hematopoietic: Reversible neutropenia (leukopenia); rarely, reversible thrombocytopenia.

Cardiovascular: Flattening of the T-wave may be seen in electrocardiographic tracings.

Central Nervous System: Encephalopathy, aseptic meningitis, convulsive seizures, optic neuropathy, peripheral neuropathy, dizziness, vertigo, incoordination, ataxia, confusion, dysarthria, irritability, depression, weakness, and insomnia.

Hypersensitivity: Urticaria, erythematous rash, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis, flushing, nasal congestion, dryness of the mouth (or vagina or vulva), and fever.

Renal: Dysuria, cystitis, polyuria, incontinence, and a sense of pelvic pressure. Instances of darkened urine have been reported by approximately one patient in 100,000. Although the pigment which is probably responsible for this phenomenon has not been positively identified, it is almost certainly a metabolite of metronidazole and seems to have no clinical significance.

Other: Proliferation of Candida in the vagina, dyspareunia, decrease of libido, proctitis, and fleeting joint pains sometimes resembling "serum sickness." If patients receiving Flagyl (metronidazole) drink alcoholic beverages, they may experience abdominal distress, nausea, vomiting, flushing, or headache. A modification of the taste of alcoholic beverages has also been reported. Rare cases of pancreatitis, which generally abated on withdrawal of the drug, have been reported.

Crohn's disease patients are known to have an increased incidence of gastrointestinal and certain extraintestinal cancers. There have been some reports in the medical literature of breast and colon cancer in Crohn's disease patients who have been treated with metronidazole at high doses for extended periods of time. A cause and effect relationship has not been established. Crohn's disease is not an approved indication for Flagyl (metronidazole) .

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Flagyl (Metronidazole) »

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Flagyl - User Reviews

Flagyl User Reviews

Now you can gain knowledge and insight about a drug treatment with Patient Discussions.

Here is a collection of user reviews for the medication Flagyl sorted by most helpful. Patient Discussions FAQs

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

 

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.


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