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Amoxicillin

By: Dr. Mark Papich

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Overview

  • Amoxicillin is an antibiotic related to penicillin used to treat and prevent bacterial infections.
  • As with similar penicillin drugs, amoxicillin kills bacteria by inhibiting production of the bacteria cell wall. Other related drugs include penicillin G, amoxicillin and ticarcillin.
  • Amoxicillin is not effective against infections caused by viruses or parasites (such as worms).
  • Many bacteria develop resistance to amoxicillin.
  • Amoxicillin is a prescription drug and can only be obtained from a veterinarian or by prescription from a veterinarian.

    Brand Names and Other Names

  • This drug is registered for use in humans and animals.
  • Human formulations: Amoxil® (Beecham) and Polymox® (Apothecon)
  • Veterinary formulations: Amoxi-Tabs® (Pfizer), Amoxi-Drops® (Pfizer) and Robamox® (Fort Dodge)
  • Amoxicillin is supplied by numerous drug companies with a variety of trade names and various generic formulations.

    Uses of Amoxicillin

  • Amoxicillin is prescribed to treat or control infections caused by susceptible bacteria.
  • Infections treated with amoxicillin often include wounds, skin infections, tooth abscesses and bladder infections.

    Precautions and Side Effects

  • While generally safe and effective when prescribed by a veterinarian, amoxicillin can cause side effects in some animals.
  • Amoxicillin should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity or allergy to the drug.
  • Amoxicillin may interact with other medications. Consult with your veterinarian to determine if other drugs your pet is receiving could interact with amoxicillin. Such drugs include the antibiotics chloramphenicol and tetracycline.
  • It is common for animals to develop diarrhea or loose stools following treatment with oral amoxicillin because this antibiotic can change the bacterial population of the pet's intestinal tract. If your pet has diarrhea, notify your veterinarian.

    How Amoxicillin Is Supplied

  • Amoxicillin is available in various size tablets (50 mg to 400 mg) and also comes in different liquid oral suspensions (liquids that should be gently shaken).

    Dosing Information

  • Medication should never be administered without first consulting your veterinarian.
  • The typical dose of amoxicillin ranges from 5 to 12 mg per pound (10 to 25 mg/kg), two or three times a day.
  • The duration of administration depends on the condition being treated, response to the medication and the development of any adverse effects. Be certain to complete the prescription unless specifically directed by your veterinarian. Even if your pet feels better, the entire treatment plan should be completed to prevent relapse or prevent the development of resistance.




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