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Amoxicillin and clavulanic acid

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Overview

Amoxicillin is the most commonly prescribed antibiotic in the United States. Unfortunately, the widespread use of this penicillin-like drug has led many bacteria to develop resistance to it.

By adding clavulanic acid to the formulation, scientists created a medication, Augmentin, that is effective against many bacteria that are not susceptible to amoxicillin alone.

This broad-spectrum antibiotic is effective in fighting infections in many parts of the body including the urinary tract, skin, sinuses, lungs, ears, throat and genital tract.

Side Effects and Interactions

The most common side effects of Augmentin involve digestive tract upset. Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea can be troublesome for some people.

Other adverse reactions to be aware of include skin rash, itching, vaginal infections, stomachache, gas, headache and vomiting.

Less common but possibly more serious side effects include liver enzyme elevations, anemia, blood disorders and psychological reactions. Report any symptoms to your physician promptly.

Long-term treatment with penicillin-type antibiotics requires periodic monitoring by a health professional.

Augmentin may interfere with some urine tests for diabetes and produce false positive results.

Augmentin should not be taken with tetracycline or some other antibiotics. Notify your doctor if you are on such a drug for a different condition.

Special Precautions

Because amoxicillin is related to penicillin, anyone who is allergic to this class of antibiotics must generally avoid such drugs like the plague.

Symptoms such as breathing difficulty, wheezing, sneezing, hives, itching, and skin rash require immediate emergency treatment.

Life-threatening anaphylactic shock may produce an inability to breathe and cardiovascular collapse and can occur within minutes of exposure.

If you experience a serious reaction and you ever have to go into the hospital, make sure a sign is placed over the bed alerting hospital personnel to penicillin allergy.

Taking the Medicine

Augmentin can be taken with meals or on an empty stomach. It is generally best swallowed with a full eight-ounce glass of water.

To maintain adequate levels of the medicine in your body, it is usually recommended that doses be given every eight hours.

Check with your pharmacist to see how you should adjust your schedule to get the third dose in on time.

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42 Comments

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I was given Amox TR-K CLV ( Generic for Augmentin ) 500mg three times a day for five days, for a dog bite on the lip, is this a long enough course of this antibiotic?

I was given Augmentin for a sinus infection and because I had an infected puncture wound on my palm from my cat clawing me. 6 days into treatment I developed a rash that started on my back and rapidly spread to my whole trunk... two days later it was going down my arms and legs. Now it is over 3 weeks later and I am on steroids to calm down the severe rash reaction I had to the augmentin. Can I assume that I am allergic to Penicillin? As a child I was given penicillin shots many times with no bad side effects. Have I developed an allergy?

PEOPLE'S PHARMACY RESPONSE: YOU AND YOUR DOCTOR NEED TO TALK ABOUT THIS. IT IS POSSIBLE YOU MIGHT HAVE DEVELOPED AN ALLERGY TO PENICILLIN, BUT YOU ALSO MIGHT BE REACTING TO THE OTHER COMPONENT OF THIS DRUG.

I was prescribed by a dentist with augmentin. I've been taking my medication for 10 days when itchy skin rashes appeared. First it was only on my legs then it spreads to my body, my nape and neck, then on my arms and back.

Amoxiciliin-clavulinate (Augmentin) has caused me significant heartburn and nausea. Probably not appropriate for those with GERD/hiatal hernia.

I was given Augmentin DF after a head injury because the doctors were afraid I would get bacterial meningitis. I took it for 3 weeks and then 2 weeks after I finished I started feeling terrible. I was admitted to hospital with a rash, epigastric pain, terrible pruritis and really dark urine.

My liver levels were right out of balance. I really thought I was going to die. It is now 5 months later and I have recovered by about 95% but I find now I cannot wear clothes which contain polyester - they make me feel really prickly where they touch my body. I also get slight sensations like an insect is crawling over my skin - mostly around my stomach.

To recover I didn't take anything, I was just treated very conservatively. According to a liver specialist I had a rare genetic reaction - not an allergic reaction.

CAUTION! Clavulanic acid can, in rare individuals (I am one!) result in quite severe liver poisoning -- symptoms, jaundice, skin rash and eruptions, elevated liver enzymes (the diagnostic evidence). In my case, recovery required a full four months.

I just started Augmentin as a result of gastric attack or constipation and was hospitalized for it. Is one of the side effect getting strange sensation on my tongue???
Thanks

I can't remember it affecting my tongue but it gave me a severe rash with many purply pustule type eruptions all over my chest and upper arms. My urine was very dark and my LFT's (Liver function tests) took about 6 weeks to return to normal. I have suffered from mild puritus (itching) for 6 months. Clothing containing synthetics was most uncomfortable. During the first 6 weeks of the reaction, having my back scratched by my wife was like going to heaven. The liver specialist told me it wasn't an allergic reaction rather it was a genetic reaction - don't really know what she meant by that.

I had a severe head injury and was given about 4 IV injections of Timentin in the hospital which contains clavulanic acid. I then had 3 weeks of Augmentin pills and I started feeling ill 2 weeks to the day after I finished them.

I think now - 7 months after the accident - I am fully recovered and I don't think I will take antibiotics containing clavulonic acid again.

Well reading the reviews on this medication, it has convinced me to NOT take this medication that I Was prescribed for my sinus infection. I'm already diabetic, I don't have time for that! lol Seems like a small portion of people can take this medicine and have a normal outcome, but it doesn't seem like anyone here has had a positive result.

PEOPLE'S PHARMACY RESPONSE: Please realize that people who do well on the drug (probably most people who take it) have no reason to report their experience here, so the sample is skewed. We think it is helpful to know what the problems may be, but do recognize that many people get benefit.

Last year I had a terrible cough and skin rash which hadn't gone away for over 100 days. I had seen over 5 different doctors, and none medications prescribed had worked. I was then prescribed Amoxycillin and Clavalanic Acid 300 mg for 7 days.

During the last few days of taking the medication I began to get what I thought was heat rash from wearing stockings all the time in the heat. After a few days it began to spread down my legs and become larger in size, they were itchy and raised above my skin and very red in colour. I thought nothing as I have always been allergic to raspberries and gotten hives from eating them and it usually went away in a few days.

The hives then became aggressive and spread to my arms, stomach, back and neck. I took myself to the doctors and they said it was nothing and gave me anti-heistmens for the next took weeks I went to 5 different doctors and none of them knew what was wrong with me even the one who had prescribed the medicine to me.

After going to the another doctor and getting different anti-heistimens I was finally back to normal and non spotty red. I have taken many different medications and know I am not allergic to penicillin so would I have been allergic to the clavalanic acid?

My daughter caught the flu and it turned into a double ear infection.
ER prescribed her Amox TR-K CLV. She has woke up with severe stomach pain and became sick. She did not have any stomach problems before the medication I may note. She also started running a high fever and her and my husband are back at the ER as we speak.
I had called before hand and luckily was able to speak to the same doc from earlier this evening. He said because of the fever bring her back in. Just waiting to hear of any news now. But I honestly wish they would have just given her the amoxicillin alone, she has used it in the past for ear infections and it worked fine. It's bad enough having a little girl miserable from flu symptoms and ear infection but to add stomach problem that could have been avoided is just awful.

I took Augmentin for 6 days for an ear infection. Five days after stopping the antibiotic, I developed a rash over trunk, upper arms, upper legs. That took 3 days to clear. Two days later, I experienced chills, mostly in legs and arms. A really odd feeling. I am taking mutli-vitamin B, and hoping this disappears. By the way, the ear infection appears to be cured.

Severe cat scratch and bite after rescuing my cat when she had her claws stuck in her cat perch. PA gave Amox TR-K CLV 825-125mg twice a day. Day 6 I am back at Doc with what I think is the starting of thrush - my mouth feels burned, dry and the inside of my lips is inflamed, red and VERY sore! She indicated was a reaction to the 'acid' part of the amox. - great, just great. Now on Amox regular for another week and a lovely yeast infection now from the higher powered stuff - I just can't win!

I was prescribed Augmentin by my dentist after a crown repair. It was a short 3 day course. 2 days after I finished, I started feeling itchy all over. We went to the E.R. and they found my bilirubin was at 9.1 (shouldn't be higher than 1.2), and my liver enzymes (mainly ALT) were elevated. They admitted me, and ruled out gall stones, cancer, etc. They discharged be and had me make an appointment with the doctor on call at the hospital.

In just 48 hours, I was much, much worse. He referred me to a hepatologist. They checked my blood and bilirubin was up to 15; ALT was up to 100 (shouldn't be higher than 55). The doc asked me what medications I had taken, and as soon as I said Augmentin, he said, "of course!".

My first symptoms appeared right after Thanksgiving. By Christmas, my bilirubin was up to 28.1 and my ALT was up to 438. They were talking about the possibility of putting me on the liver transplant list.

Before I got sick, I rode my bike 150 miles per week; at year's end, I couldn't get up the stairs without getting exhausted. With my bilirubin so high, the itching felt more like electrical shocks all over my body, about 30 per minute, 24 hours a day. I couldn't get more than an hour of sleep at a time.

Fortunately, I had a great doctor, and after 11 weeks, I started to get better. My liver was finally restored to full health the middle of March. Apparently, there are around 35 million doses given per year, with around 1,000 reactions like mine.

My doc said my reaction to Augmentin was probably genetic. It was by far the worst experience of my life.

I was given this for a sinus infection and have been on it for about 4 days with another 10 days to go. So far my side effects are diarrhea, nausea and seem more tired.

I was prescribed generic Augmentin for a sinus infection. I took one pill at 10:30 pm, and by 12:30 am, I was up vomiting, which lasted through the night. I spent the next day in bed. I've taken straight Amoxicillin many times in the past with no adverse effects. I feel that it had to be the addition of the Clavulanic Acid that caused the nausea. Won't take this medication again.

Hi RW, our son has the same problem since yesterday. Took him to ER and doc prescribed another antibiotic for the ear infection. But since then hes been to the bathroom at least 4 times with loose motion. What ended up helping your daughter for the stomach? Thanks.

I was prescribed Amox Tr-K- CLV for a gallbladder infection. I broke out in hives/skin rash. My urine in very dark. I have not been myself since taking this med.. I have a doctor apt. in the morning.

These were the exact same symptoms I had at the beginning of my ordeal. I hope you are OK. If not, post again and maybe my experience in getting through this nightmare will help you out.

I was prescribed AMOX/CLAV XR 1000mg/62.5mg 2x daily for 10 days along with Prednizone 20mg for 5 days for what the Dr thought was a severe allergic reaction on my face that was infected. I am diabetic, and was told that if my blood sugar went up [???] to just take double the medicine I take, [I take 4 pills in the AM and 1 in the PM].

After breakfast the first day my blood sugar dropped to 62, but by bedtime it was still over 200. My face is much better except for being dry and rough. I have felt good, very energetic although last night I couldn't I couldn't sleep.

After reading the comments from people taking these 2 meds I have decided not to take any more and maybe my withdrawal won't be as bad as some of the ones I read and I can get my blood sugar back to normal.

People's Pharmacy response: We think that when taking an antibiotic for an infection, it makes sense to follow the course through unless you experience a severe reaction to the drug.

I was prescribed these for a swollen lymph node/persistent strep throat infection. I would literally rather die than take this antibiotic again. I took amoxicillin years ago and had a little trouble like I do with most antibiotics (easily upset stomach), but this time, I took one pill and it felt like I was being stabbed in the stomach.

Eventually I was curled up in a ball sobbing from the pain and cramping, and I had nausea and severe diarrhea for three days from just the one pill. There was nothing that would help. I refused to take it again and had my doctor prescribe something else; she was frustrated with my intolerance but I'm convinced this medicine is straight from HELL and I'll never go near amox-clav again.

I was just prescribed this medication for a sinus infection 2 days ago. So far my only bad symptom is diarrhea! I am hating it! I might lower my dose to one horse pill a day. Those pills are HUGE.

Got prescribed this after I thought I was bit by some insect or bug (or w.e)(doc says it wasn't a bug), but since I had swollen lymph nodes still and 6 months before I had swollen lymph nodes as well she prescribed me Augmentin 875 2x Day for 7 Days. I would say on the first day I was ok, I guess it had to kind of build up in my system before I got some bad effects. I eat when I take it like I am supposed to though and avoid milk as the precautions say.

One day I was at work and needed to take a dose, and I just wish I didn't have to take it at work because I became sort of zombie like (mostly just sluggish) and clumsier than usual (I don't think its hard to fill a 3 oz cup with liquid and you keep dropping the cup) ... that made no sense, at any rate I haven't really felt as bad as that afterwards, still feeling a bit weird but it is helping my infection because I don't have the pain in my neck anymore (where the insect bit me).

I had taken Amox TR-K CLV 825-125mg that night I began to throw up. The next morning when I have awoken I had red colored bumps all over mainly the top of my legs everywhere on both then on stomach and on my chest, sides and my back. Its freaking me out and I'm starting to feel some pain in my stomach. I don't want any more problems than I just got over, is this just a bad skin rash from this medicine and even my face itchs. Will it go away?? PLEASE LET ME KNOW

See my comments from May 14, 2013. If your itching is really bad, you may be having a reaction that's toxic to your liver. I started itching 3 days after I finished my round of Augmentin, and by then my bilirubin was up to 15 (should be less than 1.5). If you're itching all over, you may want to get a blood test, either through your doctor or the ER, and take a look at your bilirubin and ALT (liver enzyme) numbers. Hope you don't have what I had!

I suffer from chronic sinus infections (about twice a year when the weather changes). I take Augmentin for them. I have recently developed GERD and upon taking my latest round of Augmentin, have been experiencing TERRIBLE heartburn/ reflux. I only have two days left, so I will persevere, but I am going to explore other antibiotics.

I was prescribed this med. For a sinus infection and have not bad any problems at all my prescription was 875-125 mg twice a day. After the third day I felt a lot better with no side effects at all

The doctor proscribed me Amoxicillin/clavulanic acid. Everybody saying that they have had rashes, heart burns, and bumps popping out. Maybe I shouldn't take it. I'm really scared.

People's Pharmacy response: Keep in mind that people who have had no problems, just good experiences with this antibiotic, don't usually post here. It is meant to cure a serious infection that could also cause you harm.

I too had the same reaction from this drug, which was prescribed for a slight infection from a dog bite. A few days after quitting the 5-day regimen. I developed thrush and very sore lips. Instqtin, a fungus fighting mouthwash, was the answer to that , said the P.A. It was, I guess, but that has taken nearly a month. A mistake to have taken anything in the first place.

I have been prescribed this drug a handful of times. It works every time, but as I get older (now 43) I find that I tolerate ALL antibiotics poorly. No matter what the antibiotic I always have a severe yeast infection. I talk with my Dr. and he writes a prescription on the same day as the initial visit... I'm not waiting on this anymore. Yeast is my most severe and bothersome symptom... but fairly easy to fix. I always now get diarrhea as well, and I have to admit this is the quickest onset of the problem and worst one ever... sorry for the details, but I almost feel I am leaking. However.... I was absolutely miserable with a sinus infection. I cried at the silliest thing for an entire day which made the symptoms worse. I was so dizzy that if I closed my eyes, moved them, then re-opened I almost fell down. I felt I had been kicked in the face because the pressure was so bad. So if I had to choose to continue that or have a yeast infection and severe diarrhea.... I'll take the meds. 4 doses later I can tell a major difference. I'll talk with the pharmacist and see if they recommend anything for the diarrhea.

My dentist prescribed this medication for an abscessed tooth. The dose is described as 875/125 mg. The pharmacist cautioned me to take only with food. I made a point of eating a substantial lunch and took the first dose mid-meal. After approximately one hour I began frequent projectile vomiting, which lasted about 24 hours, and began to decrease in frequency after 8 to 10 hours.

My distinct impression is that a second dose would have put me in the E.R., a third may not have been survivable.

I'm a 66 year old male who is not allergic to penicillin. In fact, my dentist switched me to penicillin, which worked fine.

I was given this drug, like others, for sinus infection, along with Methylprednisolone. The Prednisone made me very irritable, very restless and gave me insomnia. I was so focused on those side effects from the other med that I didn't notice the side effects from the Amoxicillin at first. Or perhaps they weren't there - not sure.

But with about two days left for the antibiotic, I started to have lower back and lower abdominal cramping. I had this once before but in my stomach when I took clindamycin, a very dull, aching throbbing feeling. Other than the cramping I have had no other side effects. The sinus infection appears to have gone away - with the exception of the swollen left eye that I always seem to get when I have a sinus infection. Hoping that the dull aching pain will go away now that I have stopped taking the meds since yesterday.

I was given this medication for a sinus infection and the first day taking it I noted could not sleep that night. I ended up with fever, horrible aches, hallucinations and it wired me so I could not sleep. Worst night of my life, would not take again.

I was prescribed Amox trk clv 875 125 for bronchitis. I have only felt tired and hurt around the heart area with a warm feeling. I haven't been able to sleep well. I was given z PAC 2 weeks before with only minimal results. Hope this is working, tired of checking compatibility of drugs. I am type 2 diabetic and blood tests are very low at times with amox. I will continue to use if no other problems are encountered.

I have been prescribed Amoxiclav for 100 days for a spinal infection. I am usually very stoic but three weeks in to the course I am suffering very bad nausea and am trying to work with difficulty. I am wondering if this situation passes off with time. I have tried to eat more, peppermint and ginger ale but nothing works. I know I need to take the whole course to try and cure the severe back pain I have endured for the past 7 years. Any advice welcome I am very despondent if I can continue on with this...

Well I've been taking this drug for fours days now, I have black stools? Is this a common effect?

People's Pharmacy response: Black stools generally warrant a call to the doctor's office, with the exception of Pepto-Bismol. It could indicate intestinal bleeding and should be checked out.

I was told to take this with food, but forgot one time on my fourth dose. Within minutes of taking the pill, I started to get severe heartburn and nausea. It was so intense, I swear my esophagus was burned. Now it feels as though there is a lump in my chest in that spot, and it hurts to swallow anything when it passes that spot. I stopped taking the medicine in fear of the pain, but it's been three days and I'm still feeling awful. I keep burping up stomach acid and I've hardly eaten since then because of how painful it was. Never had heartburn before like this!!

I was prescribed the amox/k clav for a severe ear infection. Along with this prednisone steroids. I took my first dose this morning. 5 hours later I began to get queasy. 5 minutes later I was throwing all my breakfast up and into the garbage can. I will try it once more but if it happens again I will discontinue using it.

Age 57 male was given this drug (amox tr-k clv 875-125 mg) for sinus infection but was in there because acquired a tick bite from three days early.... take drug two times a day for 10 days... about the 7th day a little nausea but didn't think about it to much..
but then day 8 super joint pain, headaches, chills, slight fever, sweats... by the way sinus infection gone in three to four days.

I was reminded by the doctor to finish the medication.. yeah yeah heard that before.. went back to doctor day 8 I knew either drug or tick bite.. doctor examined me was told not tick that this drug can cause ALL KINDS OF POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS...STOP TAKING THIS

Started on 5 June now the 16th still.. still joint pain, headache, woke up this morning in a full sweat...just soaked head to toe, try to take the pain as much as possible.. use advil.. 20 minutes later its like unlocking the body everything felt as before I ever took this drug... sorry forgot also pain on both sides of body... now I think was my kidneys... not a drinker, smoker, drug user.. believing in healthy living... never sick... work in public for over 25 years... I am never... NEVER JUST GOING TO TRUST WHAT DOCTOR PRESCRIBES...

I can't tell you all the checking a do with businesses, contractor, companies, and peoples on the NET.... why didn't I check... IF YOU CAN STAY WITH THE OLD TRIED AND TRUE... DON'T GO OUT OF THE BOX ON THIS... I swear the pharmaceutical companies are using us as guinea pigs... and getting away with it... and ours laws are letting them.... so many death are acceptable in their eyes... I CAN'T BELIEVE I DIDN'T CHECK...... WARNING.... WARNING... WARNING....

Diagnosed with a sinus infection and was given this antibiotic I have only taken two pills out of the 20 I have to take and each time immediately after I got a severe headache and stomach pain. I then got diarrhea and it felt like bugs were crawling on me. The side effects seem to last for hours. I hope that it will fade as I continue to finish my antibiotics if not the doctor may need to put me on something else because this is horrible.

I was given Augmentin for a sinus infection at the beginning of the year. Right after finishing my two week course, I stated getting extremely itchy and was tested for a yeast infection which came back negative. I also had blood work done and had an elevated lipase... No liver or pancreas inflammation, but have changes in my duodenum plus inflammation, chronic stomach and intestinal issues, chronic loose sticky stools, am now lactose intolerant and can't eat red meat, pork, can't tolerate gluten and have lost weight.

I am currently low FODMAP diet, gluten and dairy free. I've been to numerous doctors. No one seems to be able to heal my gut, not even with high dose probiotics and bland diet. One test (CDSA) showed Augmentin pretty much wiped out all of my good bacteria. I took OTC probiotics while taking it and for weeks afterward, but obviously it didn't help. I didn't have any of these issues before. I think someone needs to look into this drug and the side effects more. What good is an antibiotic if a person is sicker after taking it? It has been nearly eight months since I took it and I'm still sick and low energy since I have malabsorption now as well.

I was given augmentin for a toothache. I took one pill and went to bed. When I woke up my face was swollen beyond recognition. I went back to the hospital only to find out I was having an allergic reaction. Funny I never had a reaction before. 100 cc's of benadryl and steroids for a whole week.

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