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Cephalothin (Injection)

Cephalothin (sef-A-loe-thin)

Treats infections caused by bacteria. Belongs to a class of drugs called cephalosporin antibiotics.

Brand Name(s):

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

You should not use this medicine if you have ever had an allergic reaction to cephalosporin medicine, such as Keflex®, Velosef®, or Ceclor®.

How to Use This Medicine:

Injectable

  • Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often it should be given.
  • An IM shot is given in your muscle (upper arm, thigh, buttocks).
  • An IV is medicine that is put directly into your body through one of your veins.
  • This medicine should be given by a person trained to give IV or IM medicine, such as a nurse. Sometimes you, a family member, or friend can be taught to give your medicine.
  • If you are receiving IV medicine, check the bag to make sure there are no leaks. Also make sure the solution is clear.

If a dose is missed:

  • This medicine needs to be given on a regular schedule. Take the missed dose as soon as you remember, and take the rest of the doses for the day at evenly spaced time intervals.
  • If you miss more than one dose, call your doctor for instructions.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store in a refrigerator. Do not freeze. Take it out of the refrigerator an hour before the time for your next dose and allow it to warm to room temperature in a clean, dry place.
  • If you see particles in the solution, You should not use it.
  • If you have your treatments at home, you may be given a special container for the used needles. Keep it where children or pets cannot reach it.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are taking birth control pills or probenecid (Benemid®, ColBENEMID®) while taking cephalothin.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, talk to your doctor before taking this medicine.
  • Before taking this medicine, let your doctor know if you have ever had an allergic reaction to penicillin medicines.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you have liver or kidney disease or colitis before taking this medicine.
  • If you have severe diarrhea while taking cephalothin, check with your doctor before taking medicine to stop the diarrhea.
  • Cephalothin may cause incorrect results with urine sugar tests used by patients with diabetes.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Rash, hives, or blistering skin
  • Swelling of the face, throat, or lips
  • Wheezing or trouble breathing
  • Severe diarrhea, vomiting, or stomach pain
  • Pain, burning, or swelling where the shot or IV is given

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Mild diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Sore mouth or tongue
  • Vaginal itching or discharge

Last Updated: 6/12/2013

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