This medication is best taken on an empty stomach with a full glass of water (8 ounces or 240 milliliters) 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals; or take as directed by your doctor. If you have nausea, do not take antacids with rifampin since it will lessen the effectiveness of this drug. However, if you need to take antacids, wait at least 1 hour after taking this drug.
If you are unable to swallow the capsules, you may open the capsule and sprinkle the contents onto a spoonful of cool, soft applesauce or jelly. Eat the entire mixture right away. Do not prepare a supply for future use.
If you have a liquid form, shake the bottle well before each dose. Use a medication-measuring device to carefully measure the prescribed dose.
Rifampin is frequently used in combination with other antibiotics to prevent or treat certain kinds of infections (e.g., latent/active tuberculosis, meningococcal disease). Your dose/schedule/treatment length will vary, depending on what you are treated for. Antibiotics work best when the amount of medicine in your body is kept at a constant level. Therefore, take this drug at evenly spaced intervals, or exactly as directed. Continue to take 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.
Inform your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Rifampin may rarely cause serious liver disease. Though sometimes necessary to completely treat certain infections, combination treatment with other drugs (e.g., isoniazid, pyrazinamide) may increase this risk. Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: flu-like symptoms (fever, chills, headache, muscle aches), signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine), persistent nausea/vomiting, stomach/abdominal pain, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, mental/mood changes (e.g., confusion, unusual behavior), unusual tiredness, easy bruising/bleeding, small red spots on the skin, joint pain/swelling.
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 right away if you develop: persistent diarrhea, abdominal or stomach pain/cramping, blood/mucus in your stool.
Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new yeast infection (oral/vaginal fungal 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 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 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 rifampin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
This product 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 doctor.
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are using this drug.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. When this drug is taken during the last few weeks of pregnancy, the risk of bleeding in both mother and infant may be increased. Tell your doctor right away if you notice any bleeding in your newborn. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Rifampin can speed up the removal of other medications from your body, which may affect how they work. Examples of affected drugs include aprepitant, digoxin, ranolazine, sulfasalazine, tacrolimus, theophylline, certain anti-infectives (including chloramphenicol, clarithromycin, dapsone, doxycycline, linezolid, telithromycin, zidovudine, quinolones such as ciprofloxacin), antiarrhythmics (such as disopyramide, mexiletine, quinidine), certain antimalarial drugs (such as atovaquone, quinine), anti-seizure drugs (such as phenytoin, phenobarbital, lamotrigine), azole antifungals (such as itraconazole, ketoconazole, voriconazole), benzodiazepines (such as midazolam), "blood thinners" (such as warfarin), calcium channel blockers (such as diltiazem, nimodipine, verapamil), certain anti-cancer drugs (such as imatinib, irinotecan), certain oral drugs for diabetes (such as repaglinide), certain hormone replacement drugs (including estrogens such as conjugated estrogen, progestins such as medroxyprogesterone), certain drugs for mental/mood disorders (including clozapine, haloperidol, tricyclic antidepressants such as amitriptyline), narcotic pain relievers (such as methadone), HIV NNRTIs (such as delavirdine, etravirine, nevirapine), HIV protease inhibitors (such as atazanavir, ritonavir, saquinavir), certain drugs for sleep (such as ramelteon, eszopiclone, zopiclone), among others.
This medication may decrease the effectiveness of hormonal birth control such as pills, patch, or ring. This could cause pregnancy. Discuss with your doctor or pharmacist if you should use additional reliable birth control methods while using this medication. Also tell your doctor if you have any new spotting or breakthrough bleeding, because these may be signs that your birth control is not working well.
This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (urine screening for opiates, blood serum folate/vitamin B12), possibly causing false test results. Rifampin may also make it harder for your body to get rid of certain chemicals used in gallbladder tests. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center 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. Symptoms of overdose may include swelling face/eyes, whole-body itching, orange/red discoloration of skin/eyes, nausea/vomiting, stomach/abdominal pain, increasing tiredness, fainting.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., LFTs, bilirubin, serum creatinine, complete blood count) may be done before starting this medication and during treatment to monitor your progress or check for side effects.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip themissed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
If you are taking this drug on a longer schedule (e.g., twice weekly) and miss a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist right away to establish a new dosing schedule.
Store the capsules at room temperature away from light and moisture. The liquid form may be stored at room temperature or refrigerated for up to 4 weeks. Do not store in the bathroom. 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.Information last revised October 2016. Copyright(c) 2016 First Databank, Inc.
With WebMD's Medicine Cabinet, you can check interactions with drugs.Go to medicine cabinet