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Zinacef Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Zinacef (cefuroxime) is used to treat a wide variety of bacterial infections. It may also be used before and during certain surgeries to help prevent infection. It is a cephalosporin antibiotic. This medication is available in generic form. Common side effects include swelling, redness, pain, or soreness at the injection site. It may also infrequently cause loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, irritability, or headache.
The usual adult dosage range for Zinacef is 750 mg to 1.5 grams every 8 hours, usually for 5 to 10 days. Zinacef may interact with other antibiotics, chloramphenicol, probenecid, "live" vaccines, or hormonal birth control. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant before using Zinacef. This medication may decrease the effectiveness of hormonal birth control; consult your doctor. This medication passes into breast milk and may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.
Our Zinacef (cefuroxime) 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 Overview?
A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.
Zinacef Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects
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: dark urine, easy bruising/bleeding, fast/pounding/irregular heartbeat, seizures, unusual weakness, yellowing eyes/skin, mental/mood changes (such as confusion).
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. Do not use anti-diarrhea products or narcotic pain medications if you have any of these symptoms because these products may make them worse. Tell your doctor immediately if you develop: persistent diarrhea, abdominal or stomach pain/cramping, blood/mucus in your stool.
Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new vaginal 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, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: 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 Zinacef (Cefuroxime)
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Zinacef FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
ZINACEF is generally well tolerated. The most common adverse effects have been local reactions following IV administration. Other adverse reactions have been encountered only rarely.
Thrombophlebitis has occurred with IV administration in 1 in 60 patients.
Gastrointestinal symptoms occurred in 1 in 150 patients and included diarrhea (1 in 220 patients) and nausea (1 in 440 patients). The onset of pseudomembranous colitis may occur during or after antibacterial treatment (see WARNINGS).
Hypersensitivity reactions have been reported in fewer than 1% of the patients treated with ZINACEF and include rash (1 in 125). Pruritus, urticaria, and positive Coombs' test each occurred in fewer than 1 in 250 patients, and, as with other cephalosporins, rare cases of anaphylaxis, drug fever, erythema multiforme, interstitial nephritis, toxic epidermal necrolysis, and Stevens-Johnson syndrome have occurred.
A decrease in hemoglobin and hematocrit has been observed in 1 in 10 patients and transient eosinophilia in 1 in 14 patients. Less common reactions seen were transient neutropenia (fewer than 1 in 100 patients) and leukopenia (1 in 750 patients). A similar pattern and incidence were seen with other cephalosporins used in controlled studies. As with other cephalosporins, there have been rare reports of thrombocytopenia.
Elevations in serum creatinine and/or blood urea nitrogen and a decreased creatinine clearance have been observed, but their relationship to cefuroxime is unknown.
Postmarketing Experience with ZINACEF
In addition to the adverse events reported during clinical trials, the following events have been observed during clinical practice in patients treated with ZINACEF and were reported spontaneously. Data are generally insufficient to allow an estimate of incidence or to establish causation.
Immune System Disorders
Cephalosporin-class Adverse Reactions
In addition to the adverse reactions listed above that have been observed in patients treated with cefuroxime, the following adverse reactions and altered laboratory tests have been reported for cephalosporin-class antibiotics:
Several cephalosporins, including ZINACEF, 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 should occur, the drug should be discontinued. Anticonvulsant therapy can be given if clinically indicated.
Altered Laboratory Tests
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Zinacef (Cefuroxime)
Additional Zinacef Information
- Zinacef Drug Interactions Center: cefuroxime sodium iv
- Zinacef Side Effects Center
- Zinacef Overview including Precautions
- Zinacef FDA Approved Prescribing Information including Dosage
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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