What is oral vancomycin? What are the uses for oral vancomycin?

Oral vancomycin is a glycopeptide antibiotic that is used for the treatment of Clostridium difficile diarrhea and staphylococcal enterocolitis. Vancomycin is a bactericidal antibiotic (it kills bacteria) that exerts its effects by preventing bacteria from forming cell walls, which they need to survive. Vancomycin is only effective against gram-positive bacteria.

Oral vancomycin is poorly absorbed, and ingestion does not result in significant levels of drug in the body. Therefore, oral vancomycin is limited to the treatment of infections that are limited to the gastrointestinal tract such as diarrhea that is associated with the overgrowth of C. difficile.

What brand names are available for oral vancomycin?

Vancocin HCL

Is oral vancomycin available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for oral vancomycin?

Yes

What are the side effects of oral vancomycin?

The most common side effects associated with oral vancomycin treatment are

Less common side effects are:

Rare but serious side effects are

What is the dosage for oral vancomycin?

C. difficile-associated diarrhea

Adult Patients (18 years of age and older): 125 mg orally 4 times daily for 10 days.

Pediatric Patients (younger than 18 years of age): 40 mg/kg in 3 or 4 divided doses for 7 to 10 days. The total daily dosage should not exceed 2 g.

Staphylococcal enterocolitis

Adult Patients (18 years of age and older): 500 mg to 2 g orally in 3 or 4 divided doses for 7 to 10 days.

Pediatric Patients (younger than 18 years of age): 40 mg/kg in 3 or 4 divided doses for 7 to 10 days. The total daily dosage should not exceed 2 g.

Which drugs or supplements interact with oral vancomycin?

No drug interaction studies have been conducted for oral vancomycin.

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Is oral vancomycin safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

Use of vancomycin in pregnancy has not been adequately evaluated. Due to the lack of safety data, vancomycin should be used in pregnancy only if clearly needed. Oral vancomycin is classified as FDA pregnancy risk category B. This designation indicates animal studies have shown no harm to the fetus, but adequate safety studies on pregnant women do not exist.

Vancomycin is excreted in human milk after intravenous administration. However, oral administration of vancomycin does not result in significant levels of drug in the blood, and it is not known if vancomycin is excreted in breast milk after oral administration. Due to the lack of safety data, oral vancomycin should be used cautiously in nursing mothers.

What else should I know about oral vancomycin?

What preparations of vancomycin-oral are available?

Capsules: 125 and 250 mg. Oral powder: 25 and 50 mg compounding kit.

How should I keep vancomycin-oral stored?

Tablets should be stored at room temperature, from 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).

Summary

Vancomycin (Vancocin) is an antibiotic used to treat cases of Clostridium difficile (C. Diff) and staphylococcal enterocolitis, both of which are intestinal infections that cause diarrhea. Review side effects, drug interactions, dosage, and pregnancy safety information prior to taking this medication.

Treatment & Diagnosis

Medications & Supplements

QUESTION

Bowel regularity means a bowel movement every day. See Answer

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Medically Reviewed on 7/5/2019
References
FDA Prescribing Information
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