Ofloxacin, carrying trade names of Floxin and Ocuflu among others, is a broad-spectrum quinolone antibiotic used to treat a variety of bacterial infections. Usually administered orally or injected into a vein, it has shown tremendous efficacy in treating ailments like pneumonia, cellulitis, gonorrhea, urinary tract infections, prostatitis, plague and certain types of infectious diarrhea. When used with other medicines, it is also useful in treating multidrug resistant tuberculosis. It also finds usage in certain eye drops and ear drops. It must be borne in mind that this medicine will not work for viral infections like the common cold or flu. (1)
Now available as a generic medication, this popular antibiotic was patented in 1980 and approved for medical use in 1985. It is a part of the World Health Organization’s list of Essential Medicines. (1)
It is usually prescribed to consume this antibiotic by mouth twice a day (every 12 hours), with or without food. Of course, the actual dosage and length is dependent on the condition of the patient. It is also advised to take this medication at least two hours before or after consuming any products that may bind to it, thereby reducing its efficacy. Even if symptoms disappear, it is important to complete the full course of treatment to obtain best results. (2)
There are some side-effects caused by ofloxacin. Some of the common ones include: (3)
- Nausea and vomiting
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Gas (flatulence)
- Stomach pain or cramps
- Fever with difficulty in breathing
- Peeling or blistering of the skin
- Loss of appetite and general apathy towards food
- Dry mouth
- Acute fatigue
- Sleep problems (insomnia or other sleep-related disorders)
- Pain, swelling or itching of the vagina
- Sudden pain in the chest, stomach or back (serious symptom)
- Fainting (serious symptom)
- This medicine sometimes might lead to problems with bones, joints and tissues, especially in children. It is thus best avoided in children who are below the age of 18 years.
Before starting on a course of ofloxacin, it is important to inform your doctor: (3, 4, 5)
- If you are allergic to this drug or any other medicine belonging to the quinolone family
- About all other prescription and non-prescription drugs that you are consuming
- If are taking antacids containing aluminium, calcium or magnesium (ofloxacin needs to be consumed two hours before or after consuming these medicines)
- If there is a history of prolonged QT interval (a rare heart issue that leads to irregular heartbeat, fainting or sudden death) in the family
- If you are diabetic or suffer from liver-related ailments
- If you are pregnant, plan to get pregnant or breastfeedling
- It is also advisable not to drive or operate machinery until the patient knows how ofloxacin affects him
- Since the antibiotic can make the skin sensitive to sunlight or ultra-violet light, it is advisable to avoid prolonged exposure to sunlight during the course of the treatment.
- Oflaxin should be used with caution in patients suffering from diseases of the central nervous system since seizures have sometimes been reported after consumption of this medicine.
- It has been associated with tendinitis and even the rupture of tendons, so physicians often suggest the discontinuation of vigorous exercise during the tenure of using this drug.
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Anzen Export’s blog posts have been written with the information gathered from approved medical journals and websites online. Our research and technical team strives to provide relevant information through such articles. To be best informed, we advise consulting a doctor about an ingredient or medicine prior to taking it.
- Wikipedia [online] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ofloxacin
- WebMD [online] https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-7792/ofloxacin-oral/details
- MedlinePlus [online] https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a691005.html
- RxList [online] https://www.rxlist.com/consumer_ofloxacin_floxin/drugs-condition.htm
- MedicineNet [online} https://www.medicinenet.com/ofloxacin/article.htm#what_is_ofloxacin_how_does_it_work