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Why it's used

Ampicillin is used to treat certain bacterial infections such as ear, nose and throat infections, inflammation of the bronchial tubes, infection of the lungs, urinary tract infections, sexually transmitted disease (gonorrhea), gynecological infections, severe blood infection (septicemia), inflammation of the abdominal wall (peritonitis), inflammation of the heart valve (endocarditis), infection of the brain and spinal cord (meningitis), enteric fever, stomach or intestinal infections. This medicine works by destroying the growth of bacteria in the body.
Ampicillin may also be used together with other medicines to treat certain conditions as recommended by the doctor. It is used in combination with Probenecid to treat sexually transmitted disease (gonorrhea).
Penicillin-class Antibacterial
Ampicillin is a prescription medicine that belongs to a class of medicines called Penicillin-class Antibacterial. Penicillin are a group of antibiotics that are used to treat and prevent different type of bacterial infections.

How to use

Read the directions on the product label, patient guide, or medicine guide provided by the medicine company or your pharmacist before starting to use Ampicillin. If you have any questions related to this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist. Use this medicine as recommended by your doctor.
Ampicillin is used without food. This medicine should be taken either half an hour before or two hours after meals. Ampicillin should be taken with a full glass of water.

Typical Dosage

The typical dose of Ampicillin is 250-750 mg three to four times daily for certain bacterial infections such as ear, nose and throat infections, inflammation of the bronchial tubes, infection of the lungs, urinary tract infections, stomach or intestinal infections and 1000-2000 mg four times a day for sexually transmitted disease (gonorrhea), and enteric fever. The usual dose for children is half adult recommended dose. Ampicillin is commonly used at the same time every day.
You should continue to use this medicine as directed by the doctor even if you feel well.
Ampicillin injection is intended for intramuscular use only. Inject slowly, deep into the muscle mass.

Talk to Your Doctor

Talk to your doctor if your condition does not improve or worsens. If you have any kidney disease, a dose reduction or increase of dose interval should be considered in the patients with severe abnormal functioning of the kidney. In dialysis patients, an additional dose should be given.

Use in Children

If you are giving Ampicillin to a child, be sure to use a product that is meant for children. Before giving this medicine to a child, use the child's weight or age to find the right dose from the product package. You can also read the dosage section of this page to know the correct dose for your child. Else, consult with your doctor and follow their recommendation.

Storage

You should store Ampicillin at 25°C (77°F), and away from moisture. Store the medicine away from the reach of children and pets.
Medicines may be prescribed for uses other than those listed in the medicine guide. Do not use Ampicillin for conditions for which it was not prescribed. Do not give Ampicillin to other people who might have the same conditions or symptoms that you have. Self-medication may harm them.
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How to take Ampicillin

The dose and frequency of using Ampicillin will depend on the following factors:
  • age of the patient
  • gender of the patient
  • patient's health
  • the health of the patient's liver
  • medicines recommended by the doctor
  • any other medicines being used
  • herbal supplements being used

Ampicillin Dosage

Dosage for ear, nose and throat infections

Adult
  • Recommended: 250 mg four times a day
Children (children under 10 years)
  • Recommended: 125 mg four times a day

Dosage for inflammation of the bronchial tubes (bronchitis)

Adult
  • Recommended: 250 mg four times a day
  • Maximum: 1000 mg four times a day

Dosage for infection of the lungs (pneumonia)

Adult
  • Recommended: 500 mg four times a day

Dosage for urinary tract infections

Adult
  • Recommended: 500 mg three times a day

Dosage for sexually transmitted disease (gonorrhea)

Adult
  • Recommended: 2000 mg with 1000 mg probenecid as a single dose. In female patients, repeated doses should be given for the treatment.

Dosage for stomach and intestinal infections

Adult
  • Recommended: 500-750 mg three to four times daily

Dosage for enteric fever

Adult
  • Recommended: 1000-2000 mg four times a day for two weeks for acute treatment and 1000-2000 mg four times a day for four to twelve weeks for carrier treatment

Dosage calculation for children

To calculate the dosage for children please use the weight based dose calculator to calculate the appropriate dosage as per the weight of your child.

Forms

Capsule
Strength: 250 mg, 500 mg
Injection, powder, for solution
Strength: 1 g, 1 g/1 ml, 125 mg, 2 g, 250 mg, 250 mg/1 ml, 500 mg, 500 mg/1 ml, 10 g, 10 g/100 ml, 2 g/1 ml
Suspension
Strength: 125 mg/5 ml, 25 mg/1 ml, 250 mg/5 ml, 50 mg/1 ml, 125 mg, 250 mg
Powder, for solution
Strength: 10 g, 2 g, 250 mg, 500 mg, 125 mg, 1 g
Liquid
Strength: 125 mg, 250 mg, 2 g
Tablet
Strength: 125 mg

Special Instructions

Intramuscular injection
Take on an empty stomach.
Suspension
Shake the suspension well before use.

Missed Dose

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Do not take a second dose to make up for the dose that you may have missed. Just continue with the next dose.

Overdose

What to do if you overdose on Ampicillin?
In case of overdosage, treatment according to the symptoms (symptomatic) should be given. Overdose effect of Ampicillin can be removed from the blood by artificial blood purifying technique (hemodialysis).
Symptoms of an overdose of Ampicillin
If you use too much of this medicine, it could lead to dangerous levels of the medicine in your body. In such cases, symptoms of an overdose may include:
If you think you have overdosed on Ampicillin, call a poison control center immediately. You can look up the poison control center information from the Poison Center Finder at TabletWise.com.

Precautions while using Ampicillin

Before you use Ampicillin, tell your doctor of your medical and health history including the following:
Patients with mononucleosis or leukemia of lymphoid origin may experience an increased incidence of skin rash, hives, and severe skin itching (pruritis).
Before you use Ampicillin, tell your doctor if you are allergic to it or its ingredients. Your doctor may prescribe an alternative medicine and update your medical records to record this information. Tell your doctor if you are allergic to beta-lactam antibiotics, penicillins, cephalosporins, cefepime, cefaclor, cefadroxil, ceftazidime, ceftriaxone, cefazolin, cefdinir, cefditoren, cefotaxime, cefotetan, cefoxitin, cephalexin, cefpodoxime, cefuroxime, cefprozil, ceftibuten, ceftaroline, or cefixime.
The use of this medicine may change transaminases. Ampicillin may increase the level of transaminases in the body.
The use of Ampicillin may change blood cells level. The level of blood cells in the body gets decreased with the use of Ampicillin such as a decrease in the number of lymphocytes and thrombocytes.
The use of this medicine may change prothrombin time. Patients using Ampicillin may see an increase in bleeding or prothrombin time.

Use in Pregnancy

Ampicillin is known to be safe for use in women who are pregnant. Ampicillin can be used as a suitable antibiotic therapy during pregnancy.

Use while Breastfeeding

Consult with your doctor on the use of Ampicillin during breastfeeding. Ampicillin may pass into breast milk.

Impact on Fertility

Consult with your doctor on the use of Ampicillin, if you are trying to conceive.

Long Term Use

Long-term use of Ampicillin may cause increased growth of bacteria (non-susceptible organisms).

Ampicillin Side-effects

Rarely, the use of Ampicillin may cause the following side-effects:
The following severe side-effects may also occur when using Ampicillin:
  • Stomach and intestinal reactions
    Symptoms: vomiting, diarrhea, inflammation of the colon (pseudomembraneous colitis) bloody diarrhea (haemorrhagic colitis)
    If any of these symptoms occur, contact your doctor.
  • Symptoms: decrease in the number of leukocytes, abnormally low levels of thrombocytes abnormal breakdown of red blood cells (haemolytic anaemia)
  • Allergic reactions (possibly fatal)
    Symptoms: skin allergic reaction caused by an infection (erythema multiforme), life-threatening skin reaction (Stevens-Johnson Syndrome), life-threatening drug-induced skin reaction, life-threatening allergic reaction (anaphylaxis), skin rash, severe skin itching, hives red or purple discolored spots on the skin
    If this happens, stop taking Ampicillin and contact your doctor as soon as possible.
  • Liver disorders
    Symptoms: inflammation of the liver (hepatitis) decrease in bile secretion and flow (cholestatic jaundice)
  • Skin and allergic reactions
    Symptoms: wheezing, fever difficulty breathing or swallowing
    If this happens, stop taking Ampicillin and contact your doctor as soon as possible.
Your doctor has prescribed Ampicillin because they judge that the benefit is greater than the risk posed by side-effects. Many people using this medicine do not have serious side-effects. This page does not list all possible side-effects of Ampicillin.
If you experience side-effects or notice other side-effects not listed above, contact your doctor for medical advice. You may also report side-effects to your local food and drug administration authority. You can look up the drug authority contact information from the Drug Authority Finder at TabletWise.com.

Warnings

Allergic Reactions

Patients taking Ampicillin or with a history of allergy to Ampicillin are at an increased risk. These patients may experience serious and fatal allergic reactions such as skin rash, severe itching, hives, red/purple discolored spots on the skin, skin allergic reaction caused by an infection (erythema multiforme), life-threatening allergic reaction, and drug-induced life-threatening allergic reaction. Careful examination of the patient with a previous allergic reaction to beta-lactam antibiotics should be done.

Mononucleosis

Patients with viral infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus are at an increased risk when using Ampicillin. These patients may experience an increased incidence of skin rash, hives, and severe skin itching (pruritis). Use of Ampicillin should be avoided in such patients.

Blood Cancer

Patients with blood cancer (acute or long-term leukemia of lymphoid origin) are at an increased risk when using Ampicillin. These patients may experience skin rash, severe skin itching (pruritis), and hives. Ampicillin should be avoided in such patients.

Long-Term Use of Ampicillin

Patients using Ampicillin for long-term are at an increased risk when using Ampicillin. These patients may experience an increased growth of bacteria (non-susceptible organisms).

Kidney Dysfunction

Patients with an abnormality in the functioning of the kidney are at an increased risk when using Ampicillin. The dose of Ampicillin should be adjusted in such patients.

Interactions with Ampicillin

When two or more medicines are taken together, it can change how the medicines work and increase the risk of side-effects. In medical terms, this is called as a Drug Interaction.
This page does not contain all the possible interactions of Ampicillin. Share a list of all medicines that you use with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any medicines without the approval of your doctor.

Urine Glucose Test

Your doctor's guidelines may need to be followed while taking this medicine along with Urine glucose test. While detecting for the presence of glucose in urine, false positive results may occur with the use of Ampicillin. Enzymatic glucose oxidase methods should be used for testing the presence of glucose in the urine.

Antigout Agents

Ampicillin interacts with Antigout agent such as probenecid, which is used to treat pain, redness, and tenderness in joints. Use of Ampicillin with probenecid may decrease the kidney excretion of Ampicillin which may lead to increased levels of the Ampicillin in the blood.

Oral Contraceptives

There may be an interaction of Ampicillin with Oral contraceptives, which are used to prevent pregnancy. When Ampicillin is used with oral contraceptives, it may decrease the effects of oral contraceptives. Take necessary precautions in such patients.

Bacteriostatic Drugs

Ampicillin may interact with Bacteriostatic drugs, which are used to prevent the growth of bacteria. Use of Ampicillin with bacteriostatic drugs may interfere with the bacteria-destroying activity (bactericidal action) of Ampicillin.

Allopurinol

Special instructions need to be followed while taking this medicine along with allopurinol, which is used to treat pain, redness, and tenderness of joints. Patients using Ampicillin with allopurinol may have an increased risk of skin allergic reactions.

Traveling With Medication

  • Ensure that you carry enough doses of each of your prescription medicines to last the entire trip. The best place to store your medicines is in the carry on baggage. However, while flying, if carrying liquid medicines, make sure you do not go over the limits imposed for carry-on liquids.
  • While traveling overseas, make sure that you can carry each of your prescription medicines legally to your destination country. One way to ensure this is by checking with your destination country's embassy or website.
  • Make sure that you carry each of your medicines in their original packaging, which should typically include your name and address, and the details of the prescribing doctor.
  • If your travel involves crossing time zones, and you are required to take your medicine as per a fixed schedule, make sure that you adjust for the change in time.

Expired Medication

Taking a single dose of expired Ampicillin is unlikely to cause a side-effect. However, please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist, if you feel unwell or sick. An expired medicine may become ineffective in treating your prescribed conditions. To be on the safe side, it is important not to use an expired drug. You are much safer by always keeping a fresh supply of unexpired medicines.

Safe Disposal of Medication

  • If there are disposal instructions on the package, please follow the instructions.
  • If there are medicine take-back programs in your country, you should contact the respective authority to arrange for the disposal of the medicine. For example, in the USA, the Drug Enforcement Administration regularly hosts National Prescription Drug Take-Back events.
  • If there are no take-back programs, mix the medicine with dirt and place them in a sealed plastic bag. Throw the plastic bag in your household trash. Separately, remove all personal information including the prescription label from the medicine packaging and then dispose off the container.
  • If specifically indicated on the medicine package that it needs to be flushed down the toilet when no longer needed, perform the required step.

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