Augmentin Warnings and Precautions
There are several Augmentin warnings and precautions to be aware of before starting treatment. For example, tell your healthcare provider if you have liver disease, kidney disease, or phenylketonuria before taking Augmentin. Warnings and precautions also extend to people who are allergic to penicillin or any components of the drug or who have had liver problems due to Augmentin in the past.
Augmentin: What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking Augmentin® (amoxicillin and clavulanate potassium) if you have:
- Liver disease, including liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- A penicillin allergy
- Any other allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Specific Augmentin Warnings and Precautions
Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking Augmentin include the following:
- Augmentin contains an antibiotic that belongs to the penicillin group of antibiotics. You should not take Augmentin if you are allergic to penicillin. Let your healthcare provider know immediately if you notice any signs of an allergic reaction, such as a rash, itching, hives, wheezing, swelling of the mouth or lips, or difficulty breathing. An allergic reaction to the medication can be dangerous.
- Let your healthcare provider know if you experience diarrhea that is severe or that lasts for more than two or three days. While diarrhea is a common side effect of Augmentin, severe or prolonged diarrhea may be a sign of a serious reaction to the antibiotic.
- Your healthcare provider may need to monitor you more closely if you have liver or kidney disease, since these problems often affect the way your body handles medications. Also, Augmentin may worsen liver or kidney disease.
- Sometimes, antibiotics (including Augmentin) can cause yeast infections. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop a vaginal yeast infection or thrush (a yeast infection of the mouth) while taking the drug.
- Augmentin should not be used to treat viruses, such as the common cold. It is completely ineffective for treating viruses, and such use can lead to bacterial resistance to Augmentin.
- It is important that you take Augmentin exactly as prescribed. Skipping doses or stopping the medication too early (even if you feel better) can lead to bacterial resistance to Augmentin.
- Some Augmentin products contain phenylalanine. This is important for people with phenylketonuria, who must monitor their phenylalanine intake. If you have phenylketonuria, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking Augmentin.
- Augmentin can interact with other medications (see Augmentin Drug Interactions).
- Augmentin is considered a pregnancy Category B medication. This means that it is probably safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are not known. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of taking the drug while pregnant (see Augmentin and Pregnancy).
- Augmentin passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, be sure to discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to using the drug (see Augmentin and Breastfeeding).