clindamycin, oral (Cleocin)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

What is clindamycin-oral, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

  • Clindamycin is an antibiotic used for treating serious infections. It is effective again several types of bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Staphylococcus epidermidis, and Propionibacterium acnes. It reduces growth of bacteria by interfering with their ability to make proteins.
  • The FDA approved clindamycin in February 1970.

What brand names are available for clindamycin-oral?

Cleocin

Is clindamycin-oral available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for clindamycin-oral?

Yes

What are the uses for clindamycin-oral?

  • Clindamycin is used for treatment of serious infections caused by susceptible bacteria. It is most often used for treating penicillin-allergic patients or in other situations where penicillin or other alternative antibiotics cannot be used.
  • Examples of infections that are treated with clindamycin include:
    • Serious respiratory tract infections (for example, empyema, pneumonitis, and lung abscess)
    • Serious skin and soft tissue infections
    • Female pelvic and genital tract infections (for example, endometritis); and ovarian abscess)

What are the side effects of clindamycin-oral?

The most common side effects of clindamycin are

Cleocin also frequently causes

Clindamycin causes Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD) because it can alter the normal bacteria in the colon and encourage overgrowth Clostridium difficile, a bacteria which causes inflammation of the colon (pseudomembranous colitis). Patients who develop signs of pseudomembranous colitis after starting clindamycin (diarrhea, fever, abdominal pain, and possibly shock) should contact their physician immediately.

Other serious side effects of clindamycin include:

  • serious allergic reactions
  • blood disorders
  • Stevens-Johnson syndrome
  • toxic epidermal necrolysis

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/6/2016

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