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Lincomycin (Lincocin®)

By: Dr. Dawn Ruben

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  • Lincomycin is an antibiotic that is used in dogs and cats. It inhibits bacteria by suppressing protein synthesis and growth. Lincomycin and its derivatives share a similar mechanism of action.
  • Lincomycin is similar to the drug clindamycin (Antirobe®) and erythromycin.
  • Lincomycin is effective against a narrow range of bacteria in dogs and cats. It is effective against bacteria that infect the skin, oral cavity, bone and respiratory tract. It is not effective against coliform (intestinal derived) bacteria.
  • Lincomycin 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 formulation: Lincocin® (Upjohn)
  • Veterinary formulation: Lincocin® (Upjohn)

    Uses of Lincomycin

  • Lincomycin is used in both dogs and cats to treat bacterial infections, skin infections, wound infections, bone infections, pneumonia, dental (tooth) infections and other infections of the oral cavity. It has been commonly used for bacteria that grow without oxygen (anaerobic bacteria).
  • Lincomycin is not effective against infections caused by parasites (intestinal worms), mites, viruses or fungi.

    Precautions and Side Effects

  • While generally safe and effective when prescribed by a veterinarian, lincomycin can cause side effects in some animals.
  • Lincomycin should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity or allergy to the drug.
  • Lincomycin may interact with other medications. Consult with your veterinarian to determine if other drugs your pet is receiving could interact with lincomycin. Such drugs include kaolin and drugs with neuromuscular blocking effects.
  • In people, the most serious adverse effect of lincomycin is an intestinal problem called pseudomembranous colitis. This condition, which has been fatal in people, has not been recognized when administered to dogs and cats.
  • Lincomycin may cause vomiting, diarrhea, and decreased appetite in dogs and cats.
  • The liquid formulation is bad tasting in cats and they may avoid the medication.

    How Lincomycin Is Supplied

  • Lincomycin is available in 100 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg and 500 mg capsule forms and a 50 mg/ml liquid form available in an oral suspension.
  • Lincomycin is also available in 25 mg/ml, 50 mg/ml, 100 mg/ml and 300 mg/ml injectable form and 40 gram powdered packets.

    Dosing Information

  • Medication should never be administered without first consulting your veterinarian.
  • The usual dose is 7 to 15 mg per pound (15 to 33 mg/kg) every 8 to 12 hours. The dose and frequency depend on the type of infection treated.
  • 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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