Dicloxacillin Warnings and Precautions
Even though dicloxacillin may be an effective antibiotic for many people, it can cause serious allergic reactions, dangerous side effects, or other complications. In particular, people who have kidney disease should talk to their healthcare provider before taking dicloxacillin. Other safety precautions include warnings for people who have a penicillin allergy and those who are taking certain medications.
What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking dicloxacillin if you have:
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- An allergy to penicillin 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
You should also tell your healthcare provider about all other medications you are taking, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Some warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking dicloxacillin include the following:
- Dicloxacillin is an antibiotic that belongs to the penicillin group of antibiotics. People can be severely allergic to penicillin. Do not take this medication if you are allergic to penicillin medications. Because an allergic reaction to dicloxacillin can be extremely dangerous, 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.
- As an oral antibiotic, dicloxacillin may not be appropriate for severe infections. In these cases, injectable (IV) antibiotics may be more reliable.
- Let your healthcare provider know if you experience bloody or watery diarrhea. While diarrhea is a common side effect of dicloxacillin, 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 treatment ends and can be life-threatening.
- Antibiotics can sometimes cause yeast infections, as they can get rid of "good" bacteria that help protect against yeast infections. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop a vaginal yeast infection or thrush (a yeast infection of the mouth) during treatment.
- Dicloxacillin should not be used to treat viruses, such as the common cold or the flu. It is completely ineffective for treating viruses, and such use can lead to bacterial resistance.
- Dicloxacillin may react with other medications (see Dicloxacillin Drug Interactions).
- Dicloxacillin is a pregnancy Category B medication. This means that it is probably safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are currently unknown. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of taking this drug when pregnant (see Dicloxacillin and Pregnancy for more information).
- Dicloxacillin passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking this drug (see Dicloxacillin and Breastfeeding for more information).