Cephalexin (Keflex®, Biocef®) is an antibiotic often prescribed for the treatment of various bacterial infections, including skin infections, respiratory tract infections, middle ear infections, and sinus infections. It can also be used for preventing heart valve infections.
At this time, there are two different forms of the drug available (liquid and capsules). The liquid form of cephalexin is appropriate for children and people who have difficulty swallowing capsules whole. The medication is generally taken two to four times a day, either with food or on an empty stomach. Make sure that you complete your entire prescription, even if you start feeling better (this will ensure that the infection is completely treated).
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking cephalexin if you:
- Have kidney disease or kidney failure.
- Are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant.
- Are breastfeeding.
- Will be having surgery.
- Have any allergies. This includes allergies to cephalexin, to other cephalosporins such as Omnicef® (cefdinir) and Rocephin® (ceftriaxone), to penicillin, or to other types of antibiotics.
(Click Cephalexin to learn more about the effects of this medication, to find out how cephalexin works, and for more information on what you should be aware of before starting this drug.)