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Patient Information on Furadantin

written by: R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen•edited by: Leigh A. Zaykoski•updated: 10/31/2009

This article focuses on providing all of the important patient information on furadantin.

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    Furadantin is also referred to as nitrofurantoin suspension. It is an oral medication that is classified as an antibiotic. It helps to treat bacterial infections and prevent new ones from recurring.

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    This antibiotic is used to treat certain bladder infections. It can also be prescribed to help prevent certain bladder infections from occurring. This medication should only be used to treat infections that occur inside the bladder and never for infections outside of the bladder such as kidney infections.

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    Before each dose, the patient should shake the bottle thoroughly. It should be taken with food. It is most often taken once a day at bedtime as a preventative medication, or four times a day to treat infections. The length of time it is taken and the dosage will depend on how the patient responds to therapy and their medical condition. The dosage for children is determined by their body weight. Patients who cannot handle the taste of this medication may mix it with juice, water, formula, or milk.

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    Patients with certain medical conditions may not be able to take this medication. These medical conditions include certain eye disorders, allergies, kidney disease, liver disease, certain genetic conditions, persistent weakness because of a long-term disease, lung disease, diabetes, leg or arm numbness/tingling, blood disorders, mineral imbalance, or a vitamin B deficiency.

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    Side Effects

    Patients taking furadantin may experience side effects. The common side effects are usually not serious, but if a patient experiences the serious side effects or if the common ones persist or worsen their should immediately contact their physician. The common side effects include nausea, drowsiness, vomiting, dizziness, headache, and loss of appetite. Some patients may notice that their urine turns brown or dark yellow. In most cases, this side effect is harmless, however it may also indicate a serious problem so patients should alert their doctor if they experience this side effect, especially if it accompanied by yellowing of the skin or eyes, persistent vomiting/nausea, fatigue, abdominal or stomach pain, or a pounding/fast heartbeat. The serious side effects include eye pain, bruising or bleeding easily, vision changes, a new infection, severe/persistent headaches, and mental/mood changes. Certain side effects warrant immediate medical attention and these include tingling or numbness of the feet or hands, purplish/bluish skin, unusual muscle weakness, persistent cough, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, or chest pain.

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    Drug Interactions

    Some drugs and medications may interact with this one. Antacids that contain magnesium trisilicate may prevent this medication from being fully absorbed. Other medications that may interact include gout medications and quinolone antibiotics.

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    Risks and Warnings

    This medication should not be prescribed to children under one month of age. It should not be prescribed for viral infections, such as the flue or common cold, or kidney infections. It should not be overused, doing so could decrease its effectiveness. This medication may stain teeth so patients should thoroughly rinse their mouth after each dose to prevent teeth staining. Some patients may experience pseudomembranous colitis (a severe intestinal disorder). If this occurs patients may experience mucus or blood in stool, persistent diarrhea, or cramping or pain in the stomach or abdominal area. If this condition does occur patients must refrain from taking narcotic pain medications and anti-diarrhea medications. Patients taking this medication for prolonged periods of time may experience vaginal yeast infections or oral thrush. Patients should not drink alcohol and they should use caution when performing dangerous activities. Breastfeeding and pregnant women should avoid this drug. This medication may interfere with some laboratory tests.

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    RxList (2009). Furadantin. Retrieved on October 31, 2009 from Website: