Infections caused by microbes can show up in several parts of your system. Most likely parts which are prone to such infections are your gastric tract, breathing airways, nerves, blood, etc. Drugs which help stop a viral attack are known as antiviral drugs. On the other hand, antibiotics are largely used for controlling bacterial attacks. In this milieu, metronidazole is administered for the treatment of infections showing up in joints, a few sexually transmitted conditions as well as vaginosis in women. What are the precautions needed while taking metronidazole? Also, what is the safe dosage level of this med? It is essential to know more about these details prior to commencing your medication plan.

Metronidazole is a drug that falls under a class known as antimicrobial medications. This drug is effective against a wide range of microbial organisms. Its use is prescribed for the treatment of infections in the gastric path, vaginal tract and also, for a few types of sexually transmitted infections. You need to know that metronidazole is sold in various forms. Most commonly available forms of metronidazole are pills, suspended solution, capsules and those with an extended release capability.

Safe dosage plan of metronidazole

Your dosage plan of metronidazole can vary based on many factors. Key among them is your age, body weight, gender and prior medical conditions, if any. Owing to this, no two people with seemingly same type of infection may be prescribed with the same strength, dosage frequency and duration of treatment. For example, to treat vaginosis – you may be offered with a dosage of 500 milligrams (mg) every day. In some women – especially, those with intense spells of vaginal infections, dosages can go up to twice within a 24-hour timeline.

In case of an extended release of metronidazole, dosage strength of up to 750 mg is often administered. This is taken orally, and in most instances consumed as a single dose per day. Your treating doctor may tell you to consume it at the same time every day; this practice is known to yield better results. Make sure your caregiving team is fully aware of the other drugs that you are currently taking. In general, ensure that your treating physician has a complete knowledge of your treatment plans that you are presently pursuing. It is considered a safe practice to compile a listing of all medications; while making this list, add all forms of over the counter drugs, prescription meds, vitamin supplements, protein-based supplements, herbal medicines as well as dietary aids. After having shared this listing, do not alter it i.e., without telling your treating doctor and / or pharmacist.

Metronidazole – Common as well as rare side effects this drug is likely to trigger

Like most antimicrobial medications, metronidazole is likely to trigger some undesired and unintended side effects. Commonly experienced side effects include fungal infections in your oral parts such as tongue and throat. This condition is referred to as oral thrush. This condition may be accompanied by a marked decrease in appetite level; in some remote instances, users have complained of abdominal problems like vomiting, indigestion, nausea as well as discharge of watery stools.

In a few stray cases, users of metronidazole also experienced painful spells while having sex, difficulties to urinate, etc. Those who have had prior episodes of mood shifts must inform their caregiving team about unwanted fears, spells of psychosis, etc. Women who are pregnant need to stay clear of metronidazole; intake of this antibiotic may result in newly born babies with cleft lips. Among both sexes, a few rare side effects such as decrease in sexual interest and episodes of being severely dehydrated have also showed up.

Safety precautions associated with the intake of metronidazole

It is a good practice to tell your caregiver of allergies and hypersensitivity to drugs – especially of the antibiotic or antimicrobial genre. Users who have prior episodes of anemia or other forms of blood cell count based deficiencies, renal conditions such as drop in filtration rates of kidneys, liver health conditions (like inflammation of liver or cirrhosis), etc. must tell their treating physician of such prior medical complaints.

As an important safety precaution, never take alcohol or other forms of intoxicating drugs along with metronidazole. Those who mixed an alcoholic drink along with this antibiotic witnessed intense spells of dizziness as well as drowsiness. Among elders, this combination may turn far more risky; those aged above 55 years may experience falls. These falls may lead to bone fractures among elders who are living with bone conditions such as osteoporosis or autoimmune problems such as osteoarthritis.

As this drug can make you drowsy, your caregiving team will tell you not to drive or work with heavy machinery. As an added safety measure, it is highly recommended to stay away from adventurous sporting activities such as cycling, jumping or swimming. Those who used substances such as marijuana or have had habits like a regular use of cannabis must keep their doctor informed of such habits. Users who have had a prior history of substance abuse also must take needful precautions of keeping away from metronidazole.

Last but not least, special care is needed if you are taking live microbial vaccines. It is of extreme importance to know that metronidazole will make such vaccines partially or fully ineffective. Hence, it is essential to tell your caregiver about your medication plans – especially, regular intake of metronidazole prior to taking shots of vaccines. As this drug may aggravate the action of anesthetic drugs, those who are opting for a surgery or a dental intervention should make their surgical team aware of their medication plans. Your surgeon may tell you to discontinue the intake of metronidazole for a few days during the run up to your surgery. In such instances, consult with your treating physician about when you can resume the medication plan.

In sum, dosage plan of metronidazole varies based on age, weight, sex, your current clinical condition and prior ailments, if any. For example, for the treatment of vaginosis a dosage of 500 mg is prescribed each day. However, for acute spells of infections, dosage may be two times every day. In case of the delayed release variant, the dosage strength can go up to 750 mg. It is a good practice to talk to you treating doctor about safe dosage levels and precautions to be observed prior to starting your treatment plan.

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