What Is Cefprozil?

wiseGEEK Writer

Cefprozil is an antibiotic belonging to a group of medications called the cephalosporins. It is prescribed for children and adults to treat a variety of common infections and comes in a couple of forms for easier use. This class of drugs has to be prescribed with care because it may provoke severe allergy if patients are allergic to other cephalosporins or to penicillin. The presence of additional conditions could also contraindicate the drug’s use or require caution when prescribing it. Additionally, cefprozil can have benign and severe side effects.

Some individuals may experience hives as part of an allergic reaction to cefprozil.
Some individuals may experience hives as part of an allergic reaction to cefprozil.

Drug testing has shown that this medication is safe to use in adults and children. To make it easier for children to take, the antibiotic comes in a suspension liquid. Most adults take the drug in a tablet or pill form, which may come in different strengths.

Cefprozil is commonly prescribed to treat sinus infections.
Cefprozil is commonly prescribed to treat sinus infections.

There are a variety of infections that cefprozil treats effectively. It can be useful for uncomplicated staph infections of the skin, such as from a cut or along a suture line. Other bacterial illnesses like ear infections, bronchitis, sinus infections, and tonsillitis frequently respond positively to a course of this antibiotic.

Cefprozil may cause severe allergy in people who are sensitive to other cephalosporins or penicillin, and this is a serious concern. Patients should be fully questioned about allergies to other antibiotics prior to being given this drug. Should allergy develop, and it may even without a previous reaction, the warning signs are difficulty breathing, hives, and swelling of the face, mouth, and tongue. This is an anaphylactic shock reaction and requires immediate medical attention.

A medical history might indicate that cefprozil isn't the best choice for other reasons. Patients with stomach problems like colitis may have severe abdominal difficulties if they take this antibiotic. Those with kidney problems can still take this medication but may need a lower dose. Some adjustment to dosage might be required if patients take certain medications, too. Doctors should get a list of all drugs a patient uses to make certain no dangerous medication interactions are present.

Generally, few complications arise from taking cefprozil in the properly screened patient. The most common benign side effects are nausea and diarrhea. Minor rashes that are clearly not hives can also occur. About 3% of patients have eosinophilia, a slight elevation of certain white blood cells. Some people also report headaches or dizziness while taking this medication.

In addition to anaphylaxis, the most severe reactions to cefprozil are extreme diarrhea or elevated thirst. Some patients develop jaundice or notice an appreciable reduction in urinary output. Seizures or flu symptoms accompanied by peeling skin are very uncommon, but can occasionally occur. All of these serious side effects require immediate medical attention.

Cefprozil can be used to treat bronchitis.
Cefprozil can be used to treat bronchitis.

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