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Side Effects


Clinical Trials – SPECTRACEF® (cefditoren pivoxil) Tablets (Adults and Adolescent Patients ≥ 12 Years of Age)

In clinical trials, 4834 adult and adolescent patients have been treated with the recommended doses of cefditoren pivoxil tablets (200 mg or 400 mg BID). Most adverse events were mild and self-limiting. No deaths or permanent disabilities have been attributed to cefditoren. The following adverse events were thought by the investigators to be possibly, probably, or definitely related to cefditoren tablets in multiple-dose clinical trials:

Treatment-Related Adverse Events in Trials in Adults and Adolescent Patients ≥ 12 Years of Age

    SPECTRACEF Comparatorsa
200 mg BID
400 mg BID
Incidence > 1% Diarrhea 11% 15% 8%
Nausea 4% 6% 5%
Headache 3% 2% 2%
Abdominal Pain 2% 2% 1%
Vaginal Moniliasis 3%b 6%c 6%d
Dyspepsia 1% 2% 2%
Vomiting 1% 1% 2%
aincludes amoxicillin/clavulanate, cefadroxil monohydrate, cefuroxime axetil, cefpodoxime proxetil, clarithromycin, and penicillin
b1428 females
c1135 females
d1461 females

The overall incidence of adverse events, and in particular diarrhea, increased with the higher recommended dose of SPECTRACEF®. Treatment related adverse events experienced by < 1% but >0.1% of patients who received 200 mg or 400 mg BID of cefditoren pivoxil were abnormal dreams, allergic reaction, anorexia, asthenia, asthma, coagulation time increased, constipation, dizziness, dry mouth, eructation, face edema, fever, flatulence, fungal infection, gastrointestinal disorder, hyperglycemia, increased appetite, insomnia, leukopenia, leukorrhea, liver function test abnormal, myalgia, nervousness, oral moniliasis, pain, peripheral edema, pharyngitis, pseudomembranous colitis, pruritus, rash, rhinitis, sinusitis, somnolence, stomatitis, sweating, taste perversion, thirst, thrombocythemia, urticaria, and vaginitis. Pseudomembranous colitis symptoms may begin during or after antibiotic treatment. (See WARNINGS.) Sixty-one of 2675 (2%) patients who received 200 mg BID and 69 of 2159 (3%) patients who received 400 mg BID of cefditoren pivoxil discontinued medication due to adverse events thought by the investigators to be possibly, probably, or definitely associated with cefditoren therapy. The discontinuations were primarily for gastrointestinal disturbances, usually diarrhea or nausea. Diarrhea was the reason for discontinuation in 19 of 2675 (0.7%) patients who received 200 mg BID and in 31 of 2159 (1.4%) patients who received 400 mg BID of cefditoren pivoxil.

Changes in laboratory parameters of possible clinical significance, without regard to drug relationship and which occurred in ≥ 1% of patients who received cefditoren pivoxil 200 mg or 400 mg BID, were hematuria (3.0% and 3.1%), increased urine white blood cells (2.3% and 2.3%), decreased hematocrit (2.1% and 2.2%), and increased glucose (1.8% and 1.1%). Those events which occurred in < 1% but > 0.1% of patients included the following: increased/decreased white blood cells, increased eosinophils, decreased neutrophils, increased lymphocytes, increased platelet count, decreased hemoglobin, decreased sodium, increased potassium, decreased chloride, decreased inorganic phosphorus, decreased calcium, increased SGPT/ALT, increased SGOT/AST, increased cholesterol, decreased albumin, proteinuria, and increased BUN. It is not known if these abnormalities were caused by the drug or the underlying condition being treated.

Cephalosporin Class Adverse Reactions

In addition to the adverse reactions listed above which have been observed in patients treated with cefditoren pivoxil, the following adverse reactions and altered laboratory test results have been reported for cephalosporin class antibiotics: Adverse Reactions: Allergic reactions, anaphylaxis, drug fever, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, serum sickness-like reaction, erythema multiforme, toxic epidermal necrolysis, colitis, renal dysfunction, toxic nephropathy, reversible hyperactivity, hypertonia, hepatic dysfunction including cholestasis, aplastic anemia, hemolytic anemia, hemorrhage, and superinfection. Altered Laboratory Tests: Prolonged prothrombin time, positive direct Coombs' test, false-positive test for urinary glucose, elevated alkaline phosphatase, elevated bilirubin, elevated LDH, increased creatinine, pancytopenia, neutropenia, and agranulocytosis. Several cephalosporins have been implicated in triggering seizures, particularly in patients with renal impairment when the dosage was not reduced. (See DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION.) If seizures associated with drug therapy occur, the drug should be discontinued. Anticonvulsant therapy can be given if clinically indicated.

Postmarketing Experience

The following adverse experiences, regardless of their relationship to cefditoren pivoxil, have been reported during extensive postmarketing experience, beginning with approval in Japan in 1994: pneumonia interstitial, eosinophilic pneumonia acute, acute renal failure, arthralgia, thrombocytopenia, erythema multiforme, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis, anaphylaxis and anaphylactic shock.

Read the Spectracef (cefditoren pivoxil) Side Effects Center for a complete guide to possible side effects


Oral Contraceptives

Multiple doses of cefditoren pivoxil had no effect on the pharmacokinetics of ethinyl estradiol, the estrogenic component in most oral contraceptives.


Co-administration of a single dose of an antacid which contained both magnesium (800 mg) and aluminum (900 mg) hydroxides reduced the oral absorption of a single 400 mg dose of cefditoren pivoxil administered following a meal, as evidenced by a 14% decrease in mean Cmax and an 11% decrease in mean AUC. Although the clinical significance is not known, it is not recommended that cefditoren pivoxil be taken concomitantly with antacids.

H2-Receptor Antagonists

Co-administration of a single dose of intravenously administered famotidine (20 mg) reduced the oral absorption of a single 400 mg dose of cefditoren pivoxil administered following a meal, as evidenced by a 27% decrease in mean Cmax and a 22% decrease in mean AUC. Although the clinical significance is not known, it is not recommended that cefditoren pivoxil be taken concomitantly with H2 receptor antagonists.


As with other β-lactam antibiotics, co-administration of probenecid with cefditoren pivoxil resulted in an increase in the plasma exposure of cefditoren, with a 49% increase in mean Cmax, a 122% increase in mean AUC, and a 53% increase in t1/2.

Drug/Laboratory Test Interactions

Cephalosporins are known to occasionally induce a positive direct Coombs' test. A false-positive reaction for glucose in the urine may occur with copper reduction tests (Benedict's or Fehling's solution or with CLINITEST® tablets), but not with enzyme-based tests for glycosuria (e.g., CLINISTIX®, TES-TAPE®). As a false-negative result may occur in the ferricyanide test, it is recommended that either the glucose oxidase or hexokinase method be used to determine blood/plasma glucose levels in patients receiving cefditoren pivoxil.

Read the Spectracef Drug Interactions Center for a complete guide to possible interactions

This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

Last reviewed on RxList: 8/17/2012

Side Effects

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