Levaquin Generic Name: Levofloxacin
Levaquin is associated with an increased risk of tendon problems. These include pain, swelling, inflammation, and possible breakage of tendons. The risk of tendon problems is greater in patients who are over 60 years old patients who take corticosteroids (eg, prednisone), and in those who have received kidney, heart, or lung transplants. The Achilles tendon in the back of the foot/ankle is most often affected. However, problems may also occur in other tendons (eg, in the shoulder, arm, or hand). Problems may occur while you take Levaquin or up to several months after you stop taking it.
Signs of tendon problems may include pain, soreness, redness, or swelling of a tendon or joint; bruising right after an injury in a tendon area; hearing or feeling a snap or pop in a joint or tendon area; or inability to move or bear weight on a joint or tendon area. Tell your doctor right away if you experience any of these symptoms while you take Levaquin or within several months after you stop taking it.
Levaquin is used for:
Treating infections caused by certain bacteria. It may also be used to prevent or slow anthrax after exposure.
Levaquin is a quinolone antibiotic. It works by killing sensitive bacteria.
Do NOT use Levaquin if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in Levaquin or to any other quinolone antibiotic (eg, ciprofloxacin)
- you have a certain type of irregular heartbeat (QT prolongation, long QT syndrome) or low blood potassium levels
- you are taking cisapride or certain antiarrhythmics (eg, amiodarone, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol)
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using Levaquin :
Some medical conditions may interact with Levaquin . Tell your health care provider if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have a history of severe or persistent diarrhea, skin sensitivity to the sun, diabetes, low blood potassium levels, chest pain, angina, heart problems (eg, enlarged heart, heart failure), heart attack, irregular heartbeat (eg, QT prolongation), or if you have a family member with a history of fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat (eg, QT prolongation)
- if you have a stomach infection, liver problems, brain or nervous system problems, muscle problems (eg, myasthenia gravis), increased pressure in the brain, Alzheimer disease, brain blood vessel problems, or a history of seizures
- if you have a history of bone, joint, or tendon problems; rheumatoid arthritis; liver problems; kidney problems or decreased kidney function; or heart, kidney, or lung transplant
- if you take corticosteroids (eg, prednisone) or participate in strenuous physical work or exercise
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Levaquin . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Antiarrhythmics (eg, amiodarone, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol), arsenic, astemizole, cisapride, dofetilide, droperidol, haloperidol, imidazoles (eg, ketoconazole), macrolides (eg, erythromycin), methadone, paliperidone, phenothiazines (eg, chlorpromazine), pimozide, ranolazine, serotonin receptor antagonists (eg, dolasetron), telithromycin, terfenadine, or ziprasidone because the risk of serious heart problems, including irregular heartbeat, may be increased
- Insulin or oral diabetes medicines (eg, glyburide) because the risk of high or low blood sugar may be increased
- Corticosteroids (eg, prednisone) because the risk of tendon problems may be increased
- Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin) because the risk of bleeding may be increased
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (eg, ibuprofen) or theophylline because the risk of serious side effects, including seizures, may be increased
- Serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) (eg, duloxetine) because the risk of their side effects may be increased by Levaquin
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Levaquin may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use Levaquin :
Use Levaquin as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Levaquin comes with an extra patient information sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it carefully. Read it again each time you get Levaquin refilled.
- Drinking extra fluids while you are taking Levaquin is recommended. Check with your doctor for instructions.
- Levaquin is usually given as an injection at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. If you will be using Levaquin at home, a health care provider will teach you how to use it. Be sure you understand how to use Levaquin . Follow the procedures you are taught when you use a dose. Contact your health care provider if you have any questions.
- Do not use Levaquin if it contains particles, is cloudy or discolored, or if the vial is cracked or damaged.
- Keep this product, as well as syringes and needles, out of the reach of children and pets. Do not reuse needles, syringes, or other materials. Ask your health care provider how to dispose of these materials after use. Follow all local rules for disposal.
- Levaquin works best if it is used at the same time each day.
- To clear up your infection completely, use Levaquin for the full course of treatment. Keep using it even if you feel better in a few days.
- Do not miss any doses of Levaquin . If you miss a dose of Levaquin , use it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Levaquin .
Important safety information:
- Levaquin may cause dizziness or lightheadedness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Levaquin with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
- Mild diarrhea is common with antibiotic use. However, a more serious form of diarrhea (pseudomembranous colitis) may rarely occur. This may develop while you use the antibiotic or within several months after you stop using it. Contact your doctor right away if stomach pain or cramps, severe diarrhea, or bloody stools occur. Do not treat diarrhea without first checking with your doctor.
- Levaquin only works against bacteria; it does not treat viral infections (eg, the common cold).
- Be sure to use Levaquin for the full course of treatment. If you do not, the medicine may not clear up your infection completely. The bacteria could also become less sensitive to this or other medicines. This could make the infection harder to treat in the future.
- Long-term or repeated use of Levaquin may cause a second infection. Tell your doctor if signs of a second infection occur. Your medicine may need to be changed to treat this.
- Tell your doctor right away if you experience pain or swelling of a tendon or weakness or loss of use of a joint area. Rest the area and avoid exercise until further instruction from your doctor.
- Levaquin may cause you to become sunburned more easily. Avoid the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to Levaquin . Use a sunscreen or wear protective clothing if you must be outside for more than a short time.
- If you are scheduled to receive a typhoid vaccine while you are using Levaquin , talk with your doctor. Levaquin may decrease the effectiveness of the vaccine.
- Diabetes patients - Levaquin may affect your blood sugar. Check blood sugar levels closely. Ask your doctor before you change the dose of your diabetes medicine.
- Levaquin may interfere with certain lab tests. Be sure your doctor and lab personnel know you are using Levaquin .
- Lab tests, including liver function, kidney function, and complete blood cell counts, may be performed while you use Levaquin . These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- Use Levaquin with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects (eg, tendon problems), especially if they take corticosteroids (eg, prednisone). They may also be more sensitive to other effects (eg, irregular heartbeat, liver problems).
- Levaquin should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 18 years old; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially joint and tendon problems
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Levaquin while you are pregnant. Levaquin is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Levaquin .
Possible side effects of Levaquin :
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Constipation; diarrhea; dizziness; gas; headache; lightheadedness; nausea; stomach pain.Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue; unusual hoarseness); bloody or tarry stools; chest pain; decreased or painful urination; fainting; fast or irregular heartbeat; fever, chills, sore throat, or unusual cough; hallucinations; inability to move or bear weight on a joint or tendon area; moderate or severe sunburn; mood or mental changes (eg, new or worsening anxiety, nervousness, agitation, confusion, depression, restlessness, sleeplessness); muscle pain or weakness; new or worsening nightmares; pain, soreness, redness, swelling, weakness, or bruising of a tendon or joint area; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; seizures; severe or persistent diarrhea; severe or persistent dizziness, lightheadedness, tiredness, or weakness; severe or persistent stomach pain/cramps; shortness of breath; suicidal thoughts or actions; symptoms of high or low blood sugar (eg, dizziness; fainting; fast breathing; flushing; increased thirst, hunger, or urination; increased sweating; vision changes); symptoms of liver problems (eg, dark urine, loss of appetite, pale stools, yellowing of the skin or eyes); symptoms of nerve problems (eg, changes in perception of heat or cold; decreased sensation of touch; unusual burning, numbness, tingling, pain, or weakness of the arms, hands, legs, or feet); tremors; unusual bruising or bleeding; vaginal discharge, irritation, or odor; vision changes; wheezing.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org), or emergency room immediately.Proper storage of Levaquin :
Levaquin is usually handled and stored by a health care provider. If you are using Levaquin at home, store Levaquin as directed by your pharmacist or health care provider. Keep Levaquin out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about Levaquin , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Levaquin is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Levaquin . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Levaquin Prescribing Information (FDA)
- Levaquin Consumer Overview
- Levaquin Detailed Consumer Information (PDR)
- Levaquin Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
- Levofloxacin Prescribing Information (FDA)
- Levofloxacin Professional Patient Advice (Wolters Kluwer)