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Generic Name: metronidazole

It is used to treat certain kinds of bacterial and protozoal infections
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What is this medicine?

METRONIDAZOLE (me troe NI da zole) is an antiinfective. It is used to treat certain kinds of bacterial and protozoal infections. It will not work for colds, flu, or other viral infections.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • anemia or other blood disorders
  • disease of the nervous system
  • fungal or yeast infection
  • if you drink alcohol containing drinks
  • liver disease
  • seizures
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to metronidazole, or other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth with a full glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Do not crush or chew. Take this medicine on an empty stomach 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals or food. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Take all of your medicine as directed even if you think you are better. Do not skip doses or stop your medicine early.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
  • alcohol or any product that contains alcohol
  • amprenavir oral solution
  • disulfiram
  • paclitaxel injection
  • ritonavir oral solution
  • sertraline oral solution
  • sulfamethoxazole-trimethoprim injection

This medicine may also interact with the following medications:

  • cimetidine
  • lithium
  • phenobarbital
  • phenytoin
  • warfarin

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Tell your doctor or health care professional if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse.

You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells.

Avoid alcoholic drinks while you are taking this medicine and for three days afterward. Alcohol may make you feel dizzy, sick, or flushed.

If you are being treated for a sexually transmitted disease, avoid sexual contact until you have finished your treatment. Your sexual partner may also need treatment.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • confusion, clumsiness
  • difficulty speaking
  • discolored or sore mouth
  • dizziness
  • fever, infection
  • numbness, tingling, pain or weakness in the hands or feet
  • trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
  • redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
  • seizures
  • unusually weak or tired
  • vaginal irritation, dryness, or discharge

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • diarrhea
  • headache
  • irritability
  • metallic taste
  • nausea
  • stomach pain or cramps
  • trouble sleeping

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Protect from light and moisture. Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.


All visitors to AARP.org should seek expert medical care and consult their own physicians for any specific health issues. Read this disclaimer in its entirety.
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Note: This information is not intended to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions, or adverse effects for this drug. If you have question about the drug(s) you are taking, check with your health care professional.
 
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