GENTAMICIN

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Garamycin

GENERIC NAME(S): GENTAMICIN SULFATE

 

Description: Gentamicin is an aminoglycoside used as an antibiotic.

This medication is used to prevent or treat a wide variety of bacterial infections by stopping the growth of bacteria.

How to use gentamicin injection

This medication is given by injection into a vein or muscle as directed by your doctor, usually every 8 hours. The dosage is based on your medical condition, weight, and response to treatment. Laboratory tests (such as kidney function, levels of drug in the blood) may be performed to help find the best dose for your condition.

If you are giving this medication to yourself at home, learn all preparation and usage instructions from your health care professional. Before using, check this product visually for particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely.

Antibiotics work best when the amount of medicine in your body is kept at a constant level. Therefore, use this drug at evenly spaced intervals.

Continue to use this medication until the full prescribed amount is finished, even if symptoms disappear after a few days. Stopping the medication too early may allow bacteria to continue to grow, which may result in a return of the infection.

Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.

This medication can cause serious kidney problems and nerve damage, resulting in permanent hearing loss (including deafness or decreased hearing) and balance problems.

Tell your doctor immediately if you notice ringing/roaring sounds in the ears, hearing loss, dizziness, or an unusual decrease in the amount of your urine.

Careful monitoring by your doctor will reduce the risk of these side effects. Monitoring may include hearing, kidney, urine, and drug blood level tests.

Avoid other medications that may increase your risk for these serious side effects if taken together with gentamicin. See also Drug Interactions section.

Tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly if any of these effects persist or worsen:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • stomach upset
  • loss of appetite
  • Pain/irritation/redness at the injection site

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including:

  • numbness/tingling
  • muscle twitching or weakness
  • seizure

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 the following symptoms because these products may make them worse. Tell your doctor immediately if you develop: persistent diarrhea, abdominal or stomach pain/cramping, or blood/mucus in your stool.

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 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.

Precautions

Before using gentamicin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other aminoglycoside antibiotics (such as tobramycin, amikacin); or if you have any other allergies. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:

  • cystic fibrosis
  • hearing problems (including deafness, decreased hearing)
  • kidney problems
  • low blood minerals (including potassium, magnesium, calcium)
  • myasthenia gravis
  • Parkinson’s disease

Do not have any immunizations/vaccinations while using this medication without the consent of your doctor because Gentamicin may cause live bacterial vaccines (such as typhoid vaccine) not to work.

Tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use before having surgery (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).

Older adults may be more sensitive to the effects of this drug, especially kidney damage.

This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Although there have been reports of harm in babies born to women using similar drugs, the risk for harm may not be the same with this drug. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.

This drug passes into breast milk in small amounts. However, many doctors consider breastfeeding safe while using this medication. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.

 

Interactions

Other medications that may affect the kidneys or hearing may increase the risk of kidney damage or hearing loss if taken with gentamicin. Some affected drugs include:

  • Amikacin
  • Tobramycin
  • amphotericin B
  • cidofovir
  • cisplatin
  • polymyxin B
  • cephalosporins such as cephaloridine
  • nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)

Although most antibiotics probably do not affect hormonal birth control such as pills, patch, or ring, some antibiotics may decrease their effectiveness. This could cause pregnancy. Examples include rifamycins such as rifampin or rifabutin. Be sure to ask your doctor or pharmacist if you should use additional reliable birth control methods while using this antibiotic.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately.

Notes

Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as kidney function, levels of drug in your blood) may be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.

Missed Dose

For the best possible benefit, it is important to receive each scheduled dose of this medication as directed. If you miss a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist immediately to establish a new dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage

Consult the product instructions and your pharmacist for storage details. Keep all medications away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.

 

Brands

There are no brands containing this molecule.

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