Erythromycin/sulfisoxazole is a combination antibiotic used to treat middle ear infections in children. This product contains a macrolide (erythromycin) and a sulfa-type (sulfisoxazole) antibiotic. It works by stopping the growth of bacteria.
This antibiotic combination treats only bacterial infections. It will not work for viral infections (such as common cold, flu). Unnecessary use or misuse of any antibiotic can lead to its decreased effectiveness.
This medication should not be used by children younger than 2 months of age due to the risk of serious side effects.
Shake the bottle well before each dose. Carefully measure the dose using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose.
To prevent kidney stones from forming, your child should drink plenty of liquids while taking this medication unless the doctor instructs you otherwise.
The dosage is based on your child's medical condition, weight, and response to treatment.
Antibiotics work best when the amount of medicine in the body is kept at a constant level. Therefore, give this medication at evenly spaced intervals. To help you remember, give the medication at the same times each day.
Continue to give this medication until the full prescribed amount is finished, even if symptoms disappear after a few days. Stopping the medication too early may result in a return of the infection.
Tell the doctor if your child's condition persists or worsens.
Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain/cramping, and loss of appetite may occur. Giving this medication with food may lessen these symptoms. Headache and dizziness may also occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell the doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Remember that the doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to your child is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell the doctor right away if your child has any serious side effects, including: sun sensitivity (sunburn), muscle weakness, slurred speech, blurred vision, drooping eyelids, eye redness, hearing loss, joint pain/aches, new lump/growth in the neck (goiter), change in the amount of urine, painful urination, pink/bloody urine, mental/mood changes (such as confusion), numbness or tingling of the hands/feet.
This medication may rarely decrease bone marrow function, an effect that may lead to a low number of blood cells such as red cells, white cells, and platelets. This effect can cause anemia, decrease the body's ability to fight an infection, or cause easy bruising/bleeding. Tell the doctor right away if your child develops any of the following rare (possibly fatal) symptoms: unusual tiredness, pale skin, signs of infection (such as fever, chills, persistent sore throat), easy bleeding/bruising.
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. Tell the doctor right away if your child develops: persistent diarrhea, abdominal or stomach pain/cramping, blood/mucus in stool.
Do not use anti-diarrhea products or narcotic pain medications if your child has any of these symptoms because these products may make them worse.
Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new yeast infection. Contact the doctor if you notice white patches in your child's mouth, a change in vaginal discharge, or other new symptoms.
This medication may rarely cause very serious (possibly fatal) side effects. Get medical help right away if your child has any very serious side effects, including: severe dizziness, fainting, fast/irregular heartbeat, signs of lung injury (such as persistent cough), seizures, blue lips/skin, signs of liver disease (such as persistent nausea/vomiting, yellowing eyes or skin, dark urine, severe stomach/abdominal pain).
A very serious (possibly fatal) allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: 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 child's 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 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before taking erythromycin with sulfisoxazole, tell the doctor or pharmacist if your child is allergic to it; or to other macrolide antibiotics (such as azithromycin, clarithromycin) or sulfa medications; or if your child has any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your child's pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell the doctor or pharmacist your child's medical history, especially of: severe allergies, asthma, blood disorders (such as porphyria, bone marrow suppression/low blood cell counts), a certain genetic condition (glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase/G6PD deficiency), kidney disease, liver disease, a certain type of muscle disease (myasthenia gravis).
Erythromycin/sulfisoxazole may cause a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation). QT prolongation can rarely cause serious (rarely fatal) fast/irregular heartbeat and other symptoms (such as severe dizziness, fainting) that need medical attention right away.
The risk of QT prolongation may be increased if your child has certain medical conditions or is taking other drugs that may cause QT prolongation. Before using erythromycin/sulfisoxazole, tell the doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs your child takes and if your child has any of the following conditions: certain heart problems (heart failure, slow heartbeat, QT prolongation in the EKG), family history of certain heart problems (QT prolongation in the EKG, sudden cardiac death).
Low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood may also increase your child's risk of QT prolongation. This risk may increase if your child uses certain drugs (such as diuretics/"water pills") or if your child has conditions such as severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting. Talk to the doctor about using erythromycin/sulfisoxazole safely.
This medication may make your child more sensitive to the sun. Avoid prolonged sun exposure, tanning booths, and sunlamps. Have your child use a sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors.
Erythromycin/sulfisoxazole may cause live bacterial vaccines (such as typhoid vaccine) not to work as well. Therefore, do not have any immunizations/vaccinations while using this medication without the consent of your child's doctor.
Before having surgery, tell your child's doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).
Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially hearing loss and QT prolongation (see above).
Infants may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially a stomach problem called IHPS (infantile hypertrophic pyloric stenosis). Contact your child's doctor right away if your child has persistent vomiting or increased irritability with feeding.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. This medication must not be used near the time of delivery because of possible harm to the unborn baby. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
This medication passes into breast milk. It may have undesirable effects on infants who are ill or premature or have certain disorders (jaundice, high blood levels of bilirubin, G6PD deficiency). Therefore, breast-feeding is not recommended for infants with these conditions. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Drug interactions may change how medications work or increase your child's risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products your child uses (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your child's doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without the doctor's approval.
Some products that may interact with this drug include: clindamycin, digoxin, methenamine, methotrexate, tretinoin.
Many drugs besides erythromycin may affect the heart rhythm (QT prolongation), including amiodarone, dofetilide, cisapride, pimozide, procainamide, propafenone, quinidine, sotalol, among others.
Other medications can affect the removal of erythromycin from your child's body, which may affect how erythromycin works. Examples include azole antifungals (such as itraconazole, ketoconazole), certain calcium channel blockers (such as diltiazem, verapamil), certain anti-seizure medications (such as carbamazepine, phenytoin), quinupristin-dalfopristin, among others.
Erythromycin can slow down the removal of other drugs from your child's body, which may affect how they work. Examples of affected drugs include bromocriptine, colchicine, certain benzodiazepines (such as midazolam, triazolam), eletriptan, ergot alkaloids (such as ergotamine, dihydroergotamine), certain drugs to treat erectile dysfunction-ED or pulmonary hypertension (such as sildenafil, tadalafil), certain "statin" drugs (such as lovastatin, simvastatin), vinblastine, among others.
Although most antibiotics are unlikely to affect hormonal birth control such as pills, patch, or ring, a few antibiotics (such as rifampin, rifabutin) can decrease their effectiveness. This could result in pregnancy. If you use hormonal birth control, ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (urine tests), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all doctors know your child is using this drug.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
This medication has been prescribed for your child's current condition only. Do not use it later for another infection unless your child's doctor directs you to do so. A different medication may be necessary in that case.
If this medication is used for an extended period, laboratory tests (such as blood counts) may be performed periodically to monitor your child's progress or check for side effects. Consult your child's doctor for more details.
If your child misses a dose, give it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your child's usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store in the refrigerator. Throw away any unused medication after 14 days. 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 the pharmacist or local waste disposal company.
Information last revised October 2015. Copyright(c) 2015 First Databank, Inc.
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