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Indications:

Symptomatic Trichomoniasis Metronidazole is indicated for the treatment of symptomatic trichomoniasis in females and males when the presence of thetrichomonad has been confirmed by appropriate laboratory procedures (wet smears and/or cultures). Asymptomatic Trichomoniasis Metronidazole is indicated in the treatment of asymptomatic females when the organism is associated with endocervi-citis, cervicitis, or cervical erosion. Since there is evidence that presence of the trichomonad can interfere with accurate assessment of abnormal cytological smears, additional smears should be performed after eradication of the parasite. Treatment of Asymptomatic Consorts. T. vagi-nalis infection is a venereal disease. Therefore, asymptomatic sexual partners of treated patients should be treated simultaneously if the organism has been found to be present, in order to prevent reinfection of the partner. The decision as to whether to treat an asymptomatic male partner who has a negative culture or one for whom no culture has been attempted is an individual one. In making this decision, it should be noted that there is evidence that a woman may become reinfected if her consort is not treated. Also, since there can be considerable difficulty in isolating the organism from the asymptomatic male carrier, negative smears and cultures cannot be relied upon in this regard. In any event, the consort should be treated with Metronidazole in cases of reinfection. Amebiasis Metronidazole is indicated in the treatment of acute intestinal amebiasis (amebic dysen-tery)and amebic liver abscess. In amebic liver abscess, Metronidazole therapy does not obviate the need for aspiration or drainage of pus. Anaerobic Bacterial Infections Metronidazole is indicated in the treatment of serious infections caused by susceptible anaerobic bacteria. Indicated surgical procedures should be performed in conjunction with Metronidazole therapy. In a mixed aerobic and anaerobic infection, antimicrobials appropriate for the treatment of the aerobic infection should be used in addition to Flagyl. In the treatment of most serious anaerobic infections, Metronidazole I.V. (metronidazole hydrochloride) or Metronidazole I.V. RTU® (metronidazole) is usually administered initially. This may be followed by oral ther-apy with Metronidazole (metronidazole) at the discretion of the physician. INTRA-ABDOMINAL INFECTIONS, including peritonitis, intra-abdominal abscess, and liver abscess, caused by Bacteroides species including the B. fragilis group (B. fragilis, B. distasonis,B. ovatus, B. thetaiotaomicron, B. vulgatus), Clostrid-ium species, Eubacterium species, Peptococcus niger, and Peptostreptococcus species. SKIN AND SKIN STRUCTURE INFECTIONS caused by Bacteroides species including the B. fragilis group, Clostridium species, Peptococcus niger,Peptostreptococcus species, and Fusobacte-rium species. GYNECOLOGIC INFECTIONS, including endo-metritis, endomyometritis, tubo-ovarian abscess, and postsurgical vaginal cuff infection, caused by Bacteroides species including the B. fragilis group, Clostridium species, Peptococcusniger, and Pepto-streptococcus species. BACTERIAL SEPTICEMIA caused by Bacteroides species including the B. fragilis group, and Clos-tridium species. BONE AND JOINT INFECTIONS, as adjunctive therapy, caused by Bacteroides species including the B. fragilis group. CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM (CNS) INFECTIONS, including meningitis and brain abscess, caused by Bacteroides species including the B.fragilis group. LOWER RESPIRATORY TRACT INFECTIONS, including pneumonia, empyema, and lung abscess, caused by Bacteroides species including the B. fragilis group. ENDOCARDITIS caused by Bacteroides species including the B.fragilis group. To reduce the development of drug-resistant bacteria and maintain the effectiveness of Metronidazole and other antibacterial drugs, Metronidazole should be used only to treat or prevent infections that are proven or strongly suspected to be caused by susceptible bacteria. When culture and susceptibility information are available, they should be considered in selecting or modifying antibacterial therapy. In the absence of such data, local epidemiology and susceptibility patterns may contribute to the empiric selection of therapy.

Contraindications:

Metronidazole is contraindicated in patients with a prior history of hypersensitivity to metronidazole or other nitroimidazole derivatives.

Adverse reactions:

Two serious adverse reactions reported in patients treated with Metronidazole (metronidazole) have been convulsive seizures and peripheral neuropathy, the latter characterized mainly by numbness or paresthesia of an extremity. Since persistent peripheral neuropathy has been reported in some patients receiving prolonged administration of Metronidazole , patients should be specifically warned about these reactions and should be told to stop the drug and report immediately to their physicians if any neu-rologic symptoms occur. The most common adverse reactions reported have been referable to the gastrointestinal tract, particularly nausea reported by about 12% of patients, sometimes accompanied by headache, anorexia, and occasionally vomiting; diarrhea; epi-gastric distress; and abdominal cramping. Constipation has also been reported. The following reactions have also been reported during treatment with Metronidazole (metronidazole): Mouth: A sharp, unpleasant metallic taste is not unusual. Furry tongue, glossitis, and sto-matitis have occurred; these may be associated with a sudden overgrowth of Candida which may occur during therapy. Hematopoietic: Reversible neutropenia (leuko-penia); rarely, reversible thrombocytopenia. Cardiovascular: Flattening of the T-wave may be seen in electrocardiographic tracings. Central Nervous System: Convulsive seizures, peripheral neuropathy, dizziness, vertigo, incoordination, ataxia, confusion, irritability, depression, weakness, and insomnia. Hypersensitivity: Urticaria, erythematous rash, flushing, nasal congestion, dryness of the mouth (or vagina or vulva), and fever. Renal: Dysuria, cystitis, polyuria, incontinence, and a sense of pelvic pressure. Instances of darkened urine have been reported by approximately one patient in 100,000. Although the pigment which is probably responsible for this phenomenon has not been positively identified, it is almost certainly a metabolite of metronidazole and seems to have no clinical significance. Other: Proliferation of Candida in the vagina, dyspareunia, decrease of libido, proctitis, and fleeting joint pains sometimes resembling &ldquoserum sickness.” If patients receiving Metronidazole drink alcoholic beverages, they may experience abdominal distress, nausea, vomiting, flushing, or headache. A modification of the taste of alcoholic beverages has also been reported. Rare cases of pan-creatitis, which generally abated on withdrawal of the drug, have been reported. Crohn’s disease patients are known to have an increased incidence of gastrointestinal and certain extraintestinal cancers. There have been some reports in the medical literature of breast and colon cancer in Crohn’s disease patients who have been treated with metronidazole at high doses for extended periods of time. A cause and effect relationship has not been established. Crohn’s disease is not an approved indication for Metronidazole.

Interactions:

Metronidazole has been reported to potentiate the anticoagulant effect of warfarin and other oral coumarin anticoagulants, resulting in a prolongation of prothrombin time. This possible drug interaction should be considered when Metronidazole (metronidazole) is prescribed for patients on this type of anticoagulant therapy. The simultaneous administration of drugs that induce microsomal liver enzymes, such as phe-nytoin or phenobarbital, may accelerate the elimination of metronidazole, resulting in reduced plasma levels; impaired clearance of phenytoin has also been reported. The simultaneous administration of drugs that decrease microsomal liver enzyme activity, such as cimetidine, may prolong the half-life and decrease plasma clearance of metronidazole. In patients stabilized on relatively high doses of lithium, short-term Metronidazole therapy has been associated with elevation of serum lithium and, in a few cases, signs of lithium toxicity. Serum lithium and serum cre-atinine levels should be obtained several days after beginning metronidazole to detect any increase that may precede clinical symptoms of lithium intoxication. Alcoholic beverages should not be consumed during Metronidazole therapy and for at least one day afterward because abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, headaches, and flushing may occur. Psychotic reactions have been reported in alcoholic patients who are using metronidazole and disulfiram concurrently. Metronidazole should not be given to patients who have taken disulfiram within the last two weeks.

Warnings:

Convulsive Seizures and Peripheral Neuropathy Convulsive seizures and peripheral neuropathy, the latter characterized mainly by numbness or paresthesia of an extremity, have been reported in patients treated with metronidazole. The appearance of abnormal neurologic signs demands the prompt discontinuation of Metronidazole (metronidazole) therapy. Metronidazole should be administered with caution to patients with central nervous system diseases. Patients with severe hepatic disease metabolize metronidazole slowly, with resultant accumulation of metronidazole and its metabolites in the plasma. Accordingly, for such patients, doses below those usually recommended should be administered cautiously. Known or previously unrecognized candidiasis may present more prominent symptoms during therapy with Metronidazole (metronidazole) and requires treatment with a candidacidal agent. Prescribing Metronidazole in the absence of a proven or strongly suspected bacterial infection or a prophylactic indication is unlikely to provide benefit to the patient and increases the risk of the development of drug-resistant bacteria. Laboratory tests Metronidazole (metronidazole) is a nitro-imidazole and should be used with caution in patients with evidence of or history of blood dys-crasia. A mild leukopenia has been observed during its administration; however, no persistent hematologic abnormalities attributable to metro-nidazole have been observed in clinical studies. Total and differential leukocyte counts are recommended before and after therapy for trichomonia-sis and amebiasis, especially if a second course of therapy is necessary, and before and after therapy for anaerobic infections. Carcinogenesis, mutagenesis, impairment of fertility Metronidazole has shown evidence of carcinogenic activity in a number of studies involving chronic, oral administration in mice and rats. Prominent among the effects in the mouse was the promotion of pulmonary tumorigenesis. This has been observed in all six reported studies in that species, including one study in which the animals were dosed on an intermittent schedule (administration during every fourth week only). At very high dose levels (approx. 500 mg/kg/day which is approximately 33 times the most frequently recommended human dose for a 50 kg adult based on mg/kg body weight) there was a statistically significant increase in the incidence of malignant liver tumors in males. Also, the published results of one of the mouse studies indicate an increase in the incidence of malignant lym-phomas as well as pulmonary neoplasms associated with lifetime feeding of the drug. All these effects are statistically significant. Several long-term, oral-dosing studies in the rat have been completed. There were statistically significant increases in the incidence of various neo-plasms, particularly in mammary and hepatic tumors, among female rats administered metroni-dazole over those noted in the concurrent female control groups. Two lifetime tumorigenicity studies in hamsters have been performed and reported to be negative. Although metronidazole has shown mutagenic activity in a number of in vitro assay systems, studies in mammals (in vivo) have failed to demonstrate a potential for genetic damage. Fertility studies have been performed in mice at doses up to six times the maximum recommended human dose based on mg/m² and have revealed no evidence of impaired fertility. Pregnancy Teratogenic Effects Pregnancy Category B. Metronidazole crosses the placental barrier and enters the fetal circulation rapidly. Reproduction studies have been performed in rats at doses up to five times the human dose and have revealed no evidence of impaired fertility or harm to the fetus due to metronidazole. No fetotoxicity was observed when metronidazole was administered orally to pregnant mice at 20 mg/kg/day, approximately one and a half times the most frequently recommended human dose (750 mg/day) based on mg/kg body weight; however in a single small study where the drug was administered intraperitoneally, some intrauterine deaths were observed. The relationship of these findings to the drug is unknown. There are, however, no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Because animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response, and because metronidazole is a carcinogen in rodents, this drug should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. Use of Metronidazole for trichomoniasis during pregnancy should be restricted to those in whom alternative treatment has been inadequate. Use of Metronidazole (metronidazole) for trichomoniasis in pregnancy should be carefully evaluated because metronidazole crosses the placental barrier and its effects on the human fetal organogenesis are not known. Nursing mothers Because of the potential for tumorigenicity, shown for metronidazole in mouse and rat studies, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug, taking into account the importance ofthe drug to the mother. Metronidazole is secreted in human milk in concentrations similar to those found in plasma. Geriatric use Decreased renal function does not alter the single-dose pharmacokinetics of metroni-dazole. However, plasma clearance of metronida-zole is decreased in patients with decreased liver function. Therefore, in elderly patients, monitoring of serum levels may be necessary to adjust the metronidazole dosage accordingly. Pediatric use Safety and effectiveness in pediatric patients have not been established, except for the treatment of amebiasis.

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