This antibiotic type is widely prescribed to treat a very vast number of infections. Thanks to sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim in its content, Bactrim for UTI is proved to be highly effective in preventing the growth and multiplication of bacteria. The medication is available as an oral suspension and a tablet and its administration should be discussed with a healthcare provider.
Bactrim for UTI and Other Uses
As we have mentioned before, the medication has already proved its efficacy for different infections. It works against different types of bacteria:
- UTIs (or urinary tract infections) that are triggered by Proteus vulgaris, Enterobacter, Proteus mirabilis, E. coli, Morganells morganii or Klebsiella;
- Pneumonia that is triggered by Pneumocystis jiroveci. Bactrim doesn’t only treat the condition, yet can also assist in its prevention, if the patient’s immune system is compromised by HIV, AIDS or immunosuppressant medications;
- Chronic bronchitis, especially when it gets really worse or is caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae or Haemophilus influenzae;
- Middle-ear infections in children triggered by Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae;
- Diarrhea in case it is provoked by Shigella flexneri or S. sonnei infections. It also helps in case of traveler’s diarrhea triggered by enterotoxigenic E. coli.
It is true that Bactrim can be prescribed for acne as well, yet it’s better known as the medication for urinary tract infection treatment and prevention. Bactrim for UTI works almost for all cases, whether they’re mild or severe.
How Does Bactrim for UTI Work?
Bactrim for urinary tract infections has two components that are responsible for getting rid of a bacterial infection. Sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim target the production of folic acid in the bacterial cells. They are equally effective in different stages of the folic acid production. Why targeting its production is so essential? The thing is that folic acid is a must for the protein synthesis and DNA development. Bacteria can’t get it from foods like human beings can. This is why when they no longer receive it, they vanish.
Bactrim is recognized as one of the top effective meds due to the combination of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim. Their tandem works to prevent bacteria from getting immune to the drug’s effects. If there’s only sulfamethoxazole or only trimethoprim, they tend to get immune and always cope with it. Yet, when there’s a combination, they are powerless. Bactrim for UTI is called to be the medication with a double effect as there’re no bacteria that manage to survive after its administration.
Does Bactrim suppress folic acid in humans? No, it doesn’t. It can be taken safely without worrying about the possibility of the folic acid suppression and related issues. Nevertheless, we insist on having a professional consultation for your individual case.
Bactrim Dosage for UTI
The medication should always be administered according to doctor’s recommendations. The dosage information provided below is general and doesn’t refer to specific cases or takes into account other possible health complications. If the drug is taken more often than prescribed, it causes side effects.
Bactrim for UTI should better be administered with a full glass of water. Several more glasses of water should be taken during the next 2 hours after administration. Extra water is said to help in preventing adverse body reactions.
Those patients, who are about to take the oral liquid form of the same drug, should use a special measuring spoon or any other measuring device for an accurate dosage measurement. A regular teaspoon you have doesn’t measure the right liquid amount. To clear the infection completely and for good, take the full treatment course, even if you feel better within several days after a regular intake. Patients, who stop taking Bactrim too soon, have their severest symptoms returned.
How much Bactrim should be taken?
- Infants younger than two months are never prescribed to take the medication;
- Children (two months and older) with the weight up to 40 kg should take 8 mg per 1 kg of body weight of trimethoprim and 40 mg per 1 kg of body weight of sulfamethoxazole in divided doses daily every 12 hours for ten days;
- Children weighting 40 kg and more as well as adults are prescribed 800 mg of sulfamethoxazole and 160 mg of trimethoprim every 12 hours for 10 days – 2 weeks.
When needed, the doses are adjusted.
Bactrim for UTI Warnings and Precautions
The following groups of people are not allowed to administer Bactrim for UTI:
- Hypersensitive to either of two medication’s components;
- With low count of red blood cells (megaloblastic anemia) triggered by the deficiency of folic acid;
- With thrombocytopenia condition (low count of blood platelet);
- Severe liver damage;
- Poor kidney functioning.
Before you get the medication prescribed, inform your doctor of the following conditions that you may have: a thyroid disorder, HIV or AIDS, severe allergies, folic acid deficiency, bronchial asthma, an inherited enzyme disease, and an inherited disorder that leads to intellectual disabilities.
Bactrim during pregnancy. The medication can harm the fetus. When taken by a pregnant woman, it leads to different birth defects including cleft lip or palate, club feet or urinary tract defects. Bactrim for UTI is prescribed during pregnancy is only if the benefits after its administration exceed the drawbacks.
Bactrim while breastfeeding. If you take Bactrim, you should not breastfeed. If you breastfeed, you are not allowed to take Bactrim. The drug is always excreted in breast milk and causes the potential harm to breastfeeding infants, especially when they are premature, ill or stressed.
Bactrim for UTI and Drug Interaction
There are over 300 medications that interact with Bactrim. Here are the most widely-spread and dangerous interactions:
- ACE inhibitors
The combination of ACE inhibitors and Bactrim results in the increase of potassium levels in one’s blood (hyperkalemia). The related symptoms include fatigue and nausea, tingling sensations, muscle weakness and slowed heartbeat. High doses can trigger the heart stopping. Some popular ACE inhibitors are Vaseretic, Benazepril, Quinaretic, Quinapil, Altace, and Accuretic.
- Blood thinners
They trigger the most severe interactions with Bactrim for UTI. Patients report headache, dizziness, unusual bleeding from nose and cuts. The urine gets red or brown. The stools become red or black. Immediate medical help is required. The common blood thinners are Warfarin, Indandione, Anisindione, Coumdrin, and Dicumarol.
- Seizure drugs
Drugs like Phenytoin interact with Bactrim and get their levels in the blood stream increased. If you can’t do without seizure drugs, you need to have their doses adjusted by a professional. When the levels of seizure meds in blood are elevated, a person suffers from slurred speech and confusion, dizziness, and insomnia, constipation and nausea.
- Tricyclic antidepressants
The commonest of them are Imipramine, Protriptyline, Clomipramine, Hydrochloride, and Doxepin. They lose their efficacy rates when combined with Bactrim. Their incorrect work leads to fatigue and depressed mood, the suicidal ideation, etc.
Some experts agree on the idea that almost all known meds do interact with Bactrim for UTI. This is why your doctor should know about all drugs, supplements, and herbs you are going to take along with the UTI drug.
Side Effects after Bactrim for UTI Use
It is said that the commonest side effect that appears after the administration of Bactrim is nausea. It is usually mild. However, when it gets worse, a patient also suffers from vomiting and stomach ache, loss of appetite and anorexia (in a case of a long-term use). As to other reported adverse reactions, they are rash, itchiness and hives. They are always the signs of some serious complications that should be treated professionally.
As to the rare side effects, Bactrim for UTI is associated with them, too. However, they hardly require medical help:
- Mild tiredness;
- Abdominal pain and/or diarrhea;
- Mild weakness;
Should any serious adverse reactions be expected? They can occur but they shouldn’t be expected every time the medication is taken. Some of them include:
- Coughing and sore throat;
- Chills or fever;
- Trouble breathing;
- Severe and prolonged diarrhea accompanied with stomach cramps;
- Bleeding and unusual bruising;
- Muscle/joint pain;
- Reddish or purple spots on skin.
Sulfonamide can cause the Stevens-Johnson syndrome or any other life-threatening reactions, but such cases are very rare. We recommend stopping taking the medication if you have a rash after administration. When not treated, rash gets severe and a person may suffer from a serious allergic reaction.
Some other serious reactions are toxic epidermal necrolysis. This skin condition belongs to the group of life-threatening ones. Other non-reported but possible side effects are severely low levels of white blood cells and acute liver failure, anemia or some other blood-related disorders.
The latter adverse reactions haven’t occurred in any Bactrim for UTI patient. Yet we let you know the fact they are possible. Discuss their chances in your case with a healthcare provider. Have your doses correctly adjusted and you will manage to avoid the mentioned complications.