meropenem (Merrem)

What is meropenem injection, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Meropenem is an injectable carbapenem antibiotic. It is similar to impenem and cilastin (Primaxin). Meropenem prevents bacteria from forming the walls that surround them. The walls are necessary to protect bacteria from their environment and to keep the contents of the bacterial cell together. Bacteria cannot survive without a cell wall. Meropenem is effective against susceptible strains of E. coli, H. influenzae, K. pneumoniae, N. meningitidis, P. aeruginosa, and many other bacteria.

The FDA approved meropenem in June 1996.

What brand names are available for meropenem-injection?


Is meropenem-injection available as a generic drug?


Do I need a prescription for meropenem injection?


What are the side effects of meropenem injection?

Common side effects of meropenem are:

Injection site pain and inflammation

Serious reactions rarely may occur such as:

Serious hypersensitivity (allergic) reactions may occur.


Bacterial Infections 101: Types, Symptoms, and Treatments See Slideshow

What is the dosage for meropenem injection?

  • For the treatment of complicated skin infections in adults, 500 mg to 2 grams should be administered intravenously every 8 hours.
  • For abdominal infections, 1 to 2 grams should be administered intravenously every 8 hours.

Which drugs or supplements interact with meropenem injection?

Meropenem should not be combined with valproic acid (Depakene) or divalproex (Depakote) because meropenem may reduce absorption of valproic acid and divalproex from the intestine and increase elimination of the drugs through the kidneys thereby reducing the levels of these drugs in the body and reducing their effectiveness.

Probenecid (Benemid) may increase levels of meropenem by reducing its elimination through the kidneys. Increased levels of meropenem in the body could increase side effects like nausea, vomiting, and headache.

Is meropenem injection safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

Safe and effective use of meropenem is not established in pregnant females. Therefore, it should be used only if clearly needed.

It is not known whether meropenem enters breast milk.

What else should I know about meropenem injection?

What preparations of meropenem-injection are available?

Intravenous powder for solution: 500 mg/vial and 1 gram/vial.

How should I keep meropenem-injection stored?

Meropenem should be stored at room temperature, 20 C to 25 C (68 F to 77 F).


Meropenem (Merrem) is an injectable antibiotic prescribed to treat a variety of bacteria. Side effects, drug interactions, dosing, and storage information, and pregnancy safety information should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.

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Medically reviewed by John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP; Board Certified Emergency Medicine


FDA Prescribing Information.