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Suprax (cefixime) vs. Keflex (cephalexin): What's the difference?
- Suprax (cefixime) and Keflex (cephalexin) are cephalosporin antibiotics used to treat infections of the middle ear (otitis media), tonsillitis, throat infections (pharyngitis), laryngitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, urinary tract infections (UTIs), gonorrhea, and acute bacterial bronchitis in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
- Suprax is a brand name for cefixime.
- Keflex and Daxbia are brand names for cephalexin.
- Side effects of Suprax and Keflex that are similar include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, skin rash, fever, abnormal liver tests, vaginitis, headaches, and dizziness.
- Side effects of Suprax that are different from Keflex include joint pain and itching.
What are Suprax and Keflex?
Suprax is a cephalosporin antibiotic used to treat middle ear infections (otitis media), tonsillitis, throat infections (pharyngitis), laryngitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, urinary tract infections (UTIs), gonorrhea, and acute bacterial bronchitis in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Other cephalosporin antibiotics include cephalexin (Keflex), cefpodoxime (Vantin), cefaclor (Ceclor), cefuroxime (Zinacef), cefprozil (Cefzil), and injectable forms. Cephalosporins stop bacteria from multiplying by preventing bacteria from forming the walls that surround them that 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. Suprax is active against a wide variety of bacteria such as Streptococcus pneumoniae, Streptococcus pyogenes (the cause of strep throat), Staphylococcus aureus, Hemophilus influenzae, Moraxella catarrhalis, E. coli, Klebsiella, Proteus mirabilis, Shigella, Salmonella, and Neisseria gonorrhoeae.
Keflexis a cephalosporin antibiotic used to treat middle ear infections (otitis media), tonsillitis, throat infections, laryngitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, urinary tract infections (UTIs), skin infections, and bone infections. Cephalosporins stop or slow the growth of bacterial cells by preventing bacteria from forming the cell wall that surrounds each cell. The cell wall protects bacteria from the external environment and keeps the contents of the cell together, and without a cell wall, bacteria are not able to survive. Bacteria susceptible to Keflex include Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, E. coli, and others.
What are the side effects of Suprax and Keflex?
Common side effects of Suprax include:
Other side effects include:
The most common side effects of Keflex are:
- abdominal pain,
- skin rash,
- abnormal liver tests, and
Individuals who are allergic to penicillin may also be allergic to Keflex. Serious but rare reactions include seizures, severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis), and low platelet or red blood cell count.
Keflex, like almost all antibiotics, may cause mild or severe cases of pseudomembranous colitis, a mild to severe inflammation of the colon. Antibiotics, including Keflex, alter the types of bacteria in the colon and permit overgrowth of a bacterium called Clostridium difficile. Studies indicate that toxins produced by Clostridium difficile are a primary cause of pseudomembranous colitis.
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What is the dosage of Suprax vs. Keflex?
- The recommended adult dose for otitis media, tonsillitis, pharyngitis, and urinary tract infections is 400 mg once daily or divided and given as 200 mg every 12 hours.
- Pediatric patients (6 months and older) have a recommended dose of 8 mg/kg/day once daily or in two doses of 4/mg/kg every 12 hours.
- The dose of Keflex for adults is 1 to 4 grams in divided doses.
- The usual adult dose is 250 mg every 6 hours.
- Some infections may be treated with 500 mg every 12 hours.
- Children are treated with 25-100 mg/kg/day in divided doses.
- The dosing interval may be every 6 or 12 hours depending on the type and seriousness of the infection.
What drugs interact with Suprax and Keflex?
Probenecid (Benemid) may increase the blood concentration of Suprax by decreasing the kidney's ability to remove Suprax. This interaction sometimes is used to enhance the effect of cephalosporins.
Combining Suprax with aminoglycosides -- for example, tobramycin (Tobradex) -- produces additive bacterial killing effects but also may increase the risk of harmful effects to the kidney.
Suprax may cause a false positive urine ketone test.
Keflex may reduce the effect of the Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) tuberculosis vaccine and typhoid vaccine. Keflex should not be combined with BCG or typhoid vaccines unless there are no other options.
Are Suprax and Keflex safe to use while pregnant or breastfeeding?
Keflex is excreted in breast milk. Stop Keflex use or use with caution when breastfeeding.
Suprax (cefixime) and Keflex (cephalexin) are cephalosporin antibiotics used to treat infections of the middle ear (otitis media), tonsillitis, throat infections (pharyngitis), laryngitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, urinary tract infections (UTIs), gonorrhea, and acute bacterial bronchitis in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
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Related Disease Conditions
Staph Infection (Staphylococcus Aureus)
Staphylococcus or staph is a group of bacteria that can cause a multitude of diseases. Staph infections can cause illness directly by infection or indirectly by the toxins they produce. Symptoms and signs of a staph infection include redness, swelling, pain, and drainage of pus. Minor skin infections are treated with an antibiotic ointment, while more serious infections are treated with intravenous antibiotics.
Pneumonia (Symptoms, Causes, Types, Treatment, and Recovery)
Pneumonia is inflammation of the lungs caused by fungi, bacteria, or viruses. Symptoms and signs include cough, fever, shortness of breath, and chills. Antibiotics treat pneumonia, and the choice of the antibiotic depends upon the cause of the infection.
Upper Respiratory Tract Infection (URTI)
An upper respiratory infection is a contagious infection of the structures of the upper respiratory tract, which includes the sinuses, nasal passages, pharynx, and larynx. Common causes of an upper respiratory infection include bacteria and viruses such as rhinoviruses, group A streptococci, influenza, respiratory syncytial, whooping cough, diphtheria, and Epstein-Barr. Examples of symptoms of upper respiratory infection include sneezing, sore throat, cough, fever, and nasal congestion. Treatment of upper respiratory infections are based upon the cause. Generally, viral infections are treated symptomatically with over-the-counter (OTC) medication and home remedies.
Middle Ear Infection (Otitis Media)
Middle ear infection (otitis media) is inflammation of the middle ear. There are two forms of this type of ear infection, acute and chronic. Acute otitis media is generally short in duration, and chronic otitis media generally lasts several weeks. Babies, toddlers, and children with a middle ear infection may be irritable, pull and tug at their ears, and experience numerous other symptoms and signs. Treatment depends upon the type of ear infection.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection of the bladder, kidneys, ureters, or urethra. E. coli, a type of bacteria that lives in the bowel and near the anus, causes most UTIs. UTI symptoms include pain, abdominal pain, mild fever, urinary urgency and frequency. Treatment involves a course of antibiotics.
Tonsillitis is a contagious infection with symptoms of bad breath, snoring, congestion, headache, hoarseness, laryngitis, and coughing up blood. Tonsillitis can be caused acute infection of the tonsils, and several types of bacteria or viruses (for example, strep throat or mononucleosis). There are two types of tonsillitis, acute and chronic. Acute tonsillitis lasts from one to two weeks while chronic tonsillitis can last from months to years. Treatment of tonsillitis and adenoids include antibiotics, over-the-counter medications, and home remedies to relieve pain and inflammation, for example, salt water gargle, slippery elm throat lozenges, sipping warm beverages and eating frozen foods (ice cream, popsicles), serrapeptase, papain, and andrographism Some people with chronic tonsillitis may need surgery (tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy).
Sore throat (throat pain) usually is described as pain or discomfort in the throat area. A sore throat may be caused by bacterial infections, viral infections, toxins, irritants, trauma, or injury to the throat area. Common symptoms of a sore throat include a fever, cough, runny nose, hoarseness, earaches, sneezing, and body aches. Home remedies for a sore throat include warm soothing liquids and throat lozenges. OTC remedies for a sore throat include OTC pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Antibiotics may be necessary for some cases of sore throat.
Laryngitis is an inflammation of the voice box (vocal cords). The most common cause of acute laryngitis is infection, which inflames the vocal cords. Symptoms may vary from degree of laryngitis and age of the person (laryngitis in infants and children is more commonly caused by croup). Common symptoms include a "barky" cough, a hoarse cough, fever, cold, runny nose, dry cough, and loss of voice. Chronic laryngitis generally lasts more than three weeks. Causes other than infection include smoking, excess coughing, GERD, and more. Treatment depends on the cause of laryngitis.
E. coli (0157:H7) Infection
There are many types of E. coli (Escherichia coli). E. coli can cause urinary tract and bladder infections, or lead to sepsis. E coli O157:H7 (EHEC) causes bloody diarrhea and colitis. Complications of E. coli infection include hemorrhagic diarrhea, hemolytic-uremic syndrome, and thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. Symptoms include severe abdominal pain and bloody diarrhea. E coli O157:H7 commonly is due to eating raw or undercooked hamburger or raw milk or dairy products.
Gonorrhea In Women
Gonorrhea is a bacterial infection transmitted during sexual contact. In women, symptoms include a yellow vaginal discharge, burning or frequent urination, and redness, swelling, burning and itching of the vaginal area. Gonorrhea can be treated with injectable (penicillin) or oral medications.
COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a lung condition caused by smoking tobacco, exposure to secondhand smoke, and/or air pollutants. Conditions that accompany COPD include chronic bronchitis, chronic cough, and emphysema. Symptoms of COPD include shortness of breath, wheezing, and chronic cough. Treatment of COPD includes GOLD guidelines, smoking cessation, medications, and surgery. The life expectancy of a person with COPD depends on the stage of the disease.
Group A streptococcal infections are caused by group A streptococcus, a bacteria that causes a variety of health problems, including strep throat, impetigo, cellulitis, erysipelas, and scarlet fever. There are more than 10 million group A strep infections each year.
Bronchitis (Acute) Contagoius Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Recovery Time
Bronchitis is inflammation of the airways in the lung. Acute bronchitis is is short in duration (10 to 20 days) in comparison with chronic bronchitis, which lasts for months to years. Causes of acute bronchitis include viruses and bacteria, which means it can be contagious. Acute bronchitis caused by environmental factors such as pollution or cigarette smoke is not contagious. Common symptoms for acute bronchitis include nasal congestion, cough, headache, sore throat, muscle aches, and fatigue. Acute bronchitis in children also my include runny nose, fever, and chest pain. Treatment for acute bronchitis are OTC pain relievers, cough suppressants (although not recommended in children), and rest. Infrequently antibiotics may be prescribed to treat acute bronchitis.
Chronic Bronchitis (Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, Remedies)
Chronic bronchitis is a cough that occurs daily with production of sputum that lasts for at least three months, two years in a row. Causes of chronic bronchitis include cigarette smoking, inhaled irritants, and underlying disease processes (such as asthma, or congestive heart failure). Symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, and wheezing. Treatments include bronchodilators and steroids. Complications of chronic bronchitis include COPD and emphysema.
Shigellosis is a disease caused by the Shigella bacteria. Bloody diarrhea, stomach cramps, and fever are common symptoms. Mild infections usually resolve on their own. Antibiotics are used to treat more severe cases.
Treatment & Diagnosis
- Swollen Tonsils
- Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
- Upper Respiratory Infection
- Middle Ear Infection (Otitis Media)
- Sore Throat (Pharyngitis)
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
- How to Choose a Doctor
- Doctor: Checklist to Take To Your Doctor's Appointment
- Doctor: Getting the Most from Your Doctor's Appointment
- Urinary Tract Infection FAQs
- Pneumonia FAQs
- Strep Streptococcal Throat Infection FAQs
- Ear Infection FAQs
- COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) FAQs
- Bronchitis FAQs
- How Do You Get Staph Infection?
- What Causes an Ear Infection?
- How Do You Get an Ear Infection?
- How to Get Rid of a Staph Infection
- Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) Symptoms
- E. coli Infection Facts
- Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) Treatment
Medications & Supplements
- Keflex (cephalexin)
- cefixime (Suprax)
- Cipro, XR (ciprofloxacin) vs. Keflex (cephalexin)
- Doxycycline vs. Keflex
- Keflex vs. Penicillin
- Suprax (cefixime) vs. azithromycin
- Cefdinir vs. Keflex
- Suprax (cefixime) vs. ofloxacin
- Suprax (cefixime) vs. cefuroxime
- Suprax (cefixime) vs. Augmentin
- Levaquin (levofloxacin) vs. Keflex (cephalexin)
- Suprax (cefixime) vs. cefpodoxime
- Suprax (cefixime) vs. Rocephin (ceftriaxone)
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