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What Factors Affect Bactrim® Dosage?

By Madeleine A.
Updated May 17, 2024
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Factors that affect a Bactrim® dosage include the type of infection it is being used to treat, the current medical conditions of the patient, and the height and weight of the patient. Other medications that are being taken also play a role in a Bactrim® dosage. The standard Bactrima® dosage is a single double-strength tablet or two tablets of regular strength Bactrim&reg taken twice daily for 10 days to two weeks. This antibiotic is used to treat urinary tract infections, traveler's diarrhea, ear infections, and certain types of chronic bronchitis and pneumonia.

Though generally safe and well-tolerated by most people, even the standard Bactrim® dosage can cause side effects. These side effects include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and skin rash. Other, less common side effects from a standard Bactrim® dosage include easy bruising, jaundice, high potassium levels, and muscle weakness. Rarely, seizures, swelling of the throat, mouth and lips, and difficulty breathing can occur. These reactions are considered medical emergencies and need to be evaluated and treated by a health care professional as soon as possible.

Even long after Bactrim&reg has been discontinued, severe diarrhea can occur, which can quickly cause dehydration. The health care provider needs to be notified when diarrhea occurs. Diarrhea and resultant dehydration can be treated with anti-diarrhea medications, fluid replacement with sports drinks, and, in severe cases, intravenous fluids.

Taking Bactrim&reg when pregnant may pose possible risks to the unborn baby, and is not recommended except in certain situations. This antibiotic may cause birth defects, but additional studies are warranted to substantiate these risks. Women who take the standard Bactrim® dosage late in their pregnancies may be increasing the risk of their babies becoming jaundiced. In severe cases, jaundice can cause a serious medical condition known as kernicterus, which brain damage induced by extreme jaundice.

Bactrim&reg has the potential to pass through the breast milk in those who are nursing a baby. Taking this medication should be discussed with the health care provider prior to taking it. Breast feeding a baby while taking Bactrim&reg can result in the baby experiencing diarrhea, diaper rash, and thrush, which is a type of yeast infection of the mouth. If these effects occur, the health care provider may recommend an alternative treatment and discontinuation of this antibiotic.

This medication is commonly used to treat urinary tract infection symptoms such as burning, urgency, and frequency. Other remedies that can be used in the treatment of a urinary tract infection include drinking plenty of water, avoiding caffeine, and drinking cranberry juice. Also, over-the-counter urinary tract pain relievers are also helpful in reducing discomfort.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

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