Antibiotics for cystic fibrosis
|Generic Name||Brand Name|
|amoxicillin and clavulanate potassium||Augmentin|
How It Works
Antibiotics kill bacteria that cause infection. After your doctor has determined what type of bacteria is present, he or she will prescribe the right kind of antibiotic. Antibiotics can be taken in pill or liquid form, in an aerosol that is inhaled deep into the lungs, or intravenously (IV).
Why It Is Used
Antibiotics can stop or prevent lung infections in people who have cystic fibrosis. When they are given at the first sign of a lung infection, they may prevent complications.
How Well It Works
Antibiotics improve how well the lungs work and help prevent lung problems from getting worse.
Antibiotics can be taken as pills or as a liquid, given through an IV, or inhaled. Inhaled antibiotics may have fewer side effects because the doses can be smaller. But some inhaled antibiotics can irritate the lungs and cause coughing.
Common side effects of antibiotics include:
- Nausea or throwing up.
- Mild diarrhea.
- Another infection, such as a fungal infection.
Less common and more serious side effects of antibiotics include:
- Skin rashes, hives, or itching.
- Kidney problems.
- Developing antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
- Severe allergic reaction.
Some people are allergic to certain antibiotics. If you know you are allergic to an antibiotic, tell your doctor. If you have an allergic reaction after taking an antibiotic, call your doctor.
Ciprofloxacin raises the risk of a tendon rupture or other tendon damage. If you have sudden pain or swelling around your ankle, shoulder, elbow, or hand while taking this medicine, tell your doctor. Do not exercise until your doctor says it is okay.
See Drug Reference for a full list of side effects. (Drug Reference is not available in all systems.)
What To Think About
For a serious infection, you may need to take two different antibiotics at the same time.
Inhaled antibiotics such as tobramycin help improve the health of the lungs and prevent flare-ups in people who have moderate to severe cystic fibrosis. And they help prevent flare-ups in people who have mild cystic fibrosis.1 The downside is that some people think tobramycin tastes and smells bad.
Oral antibiotics cannot always fight the most common bacteria found in lung infections in people who have cystic fibrosis.
Last Updated: June 23, 2009