Antibiotics Home > Cefazolin

Given as an injection into a vein or muscle, cefazolin is prescribed to treat various bacterial infections. It can also be used to prevent surgical infections. As a cephalosporin antibiotic, cefazolin works to kill bacteria by preventing them from making cell walls. Allergic reactions, thrush, and digestive problems are some of the possible side effects.

What Is Cefazolin?

Cefazolin (Ancef®) is a prescription cephalosporin antibiotic licensed to treat a number of different infections. It is also used to help prevent surgical infections. The drug is given intravenously (by IV) or by intramuscular (IM) injection.
(Click What Is Cefazolin Used For? for more information on this topic, including possible off-label uses.)

Are There Side Effects?

Just like any medicine, cefazolin can cause side effects. However, not everyone who uses the drug will experience problems. Most people tolerate it quite well.
If reactions do occur, in most cases, they are mild and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
Common side effects of cefazolin include but are not limited to:
  • Allergic reactions (usually an itchy rash)
  • Digestive side effects like nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Thrush.
(Click Cefazolin Side Effects to learn more, including potentially serious side effects you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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