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What Is Sulfisoxazole?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 17, 2024
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Sulfisoxazole is an antibiotic medication effective against a range of bacteria. Patients may take it alone or in combination with another drug like erythromycin. It is generally safe for use in people over two years of age, including pregnant and breastfeeding women, although mothers should always consult obstetricians or pediatricians before starting a new medication. There are some potentially serious side effects with sulfisoxazole, making it important to receive monitoring while on the drug and to report any problems as soon as they appear.

This drug is part of the sulfonamide class of antibiotics, and works by preventing bacterial growth. Infections stop in their tracks and gradually shrink as older generations of bacteria die off. The appropriate sulfisoxazole dosage can depend on the patient’s age and weight, as well as the type of infection. It’s commonly used for ear and sinus infections, particularly in children, and can be appropriate in other settings as well.

Patients with liver or kidney problems, as well as blood disorders, may not be able to take sulfisoxazole safely. They can discuss their medical history with a doctor to determine if they should use the medication and if a dosage adjustment might be necessary. It is also inadvisable to take this antibiotic if a patient is using warfarin or methotrexate, as there are known drug interactions with these medications. Other drugs may interact as well, and patients should always discuss what they are taking before starting a new drug.

Side effects associated with sulfisoxazole can include mild nausea, fatigue, and itching. Patients who develop severe gastrointestinal discomfort, significant rashes, and weakness should consult a doctor. They may be experiencing a bad drug reaction. It could be necessary to switch to a different antibiotic and avoid sulfisoxazole in the future. Patients who have a history of problems with sulfonamides may also want to bring this up before starting a course of medication, because they could be at increased risk of adverse reactions.

To reduce the intensity of side effects, it can help to take the medication with a large glass of water, and to drink ample water throughout the day while on the drug. It’s also important to take doses at the same time every day to keep the levels of sulfisoxazole in the body consistent. This both ensures even coverage to address the infection and reduces the risk of a spike in medication levels that might cause more side effects.

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.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a WiseGeek researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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Mary McMahon

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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