Precautions and Warnings With Ceftazidime
Before receiving ceftazidime, make sure your healthcare provider is aware of any other medical conditions you have, such as kidney failure, and any other medications you are taking. Ceftazidime's warnings and precautions should be fully understood to help ensure your safety. If you are allergic to any other cephalosporin antibiotics or any of the drug's ingredients, do not take it.
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to receiving ceftazidime (Fortaz®, Tazicef®) if you have:
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- An allergy to cephalosporin or penicillin antibiotics
- Any other allergies, including to foods, 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 of the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Some warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to using this drug include the following:
- Make sure your healthcare provider knows if you have kidney disease, as the kidneys excrete ceftazidime from the body. If your kidneys are not functioning well, you will need a lower and/or less frequent ceftazidime dosage.
- Let your healthcare provider know if you experience bloody or watery diarrhea. Although diarrhea is one of the common ceftazidime side effects, bloody or watery diarrhea may be a sign of a serious reaction to the drug that can occur when certain bacteria (Clostridium difficile) overgrow in the colon. This severe reaction can occur long after you stop using ceftazidime and can be life-threatening.
- Ceftazidime contains an antibiotic that belongs to the cephalosporin group of antibiotics (which are related to penicillin antibiotics). Some (but not all) people who are allergic to penicillins will also be allergic to ceftazidime. Let your healthcare provider know immediately if you notice any signs of an allergic reaction, such as:
- A rash
- Swelling of the mouth or lips
- Difficulty breathing.
An allergic reaction to this drug can be dangerous.
- Sometimes, antibiotics can cause yeast infections, since they can get rid of "good" bacteria that help protect against such infections. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop a vaginal yeast infection or thrush (a yeast infection of the mouth) while using ceftazidime.
- This medication should not be used to treat viruses, such as the common cold or the flu. Ceftazidime is completely ineffective for treating viruses, and such use can lead to bacterial resistance.
- Ceftazidime can react with other medications (see Drug Interactions With Ceftazidime).
- This product 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 using this medication when pregnant (see Ceftazidime and Pregnancy for more information).
- Ceftazidime passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, be sure to discuss the issue with your healthcare provider before using the drug (see Ceftazidime and Breastfeeding for more information).