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31 Jan 2012 02:26 PM

Augmentin - An oral antibacterial combination


Amoxicillin, a beta-lactam antibiotic being susceptible to degradation by beta-lactamase producing germs is used with a combination of clavulanic acid. The role of clavulanic acid is to inhibit the action of beta-lactamase thus making amoxicillin effective. This combination is sold by the brand name Augmentin by GlaxoSmithKline and by the brand name Clavamox by Pfizer. Augmentin is strictly to be used for bacterial infections only to prevent the development of drug-resistant microbes and also for other antibiotics to be effective. The physician should be confirmed that the infection is bacterial and then only he should recommend it to his patients.
Augmentin is used mainly for curing bacterial infections of human body. As it is a combination of amoxicillin and clavulanic acid it is drug of the penicillin family. The clavulanic acid is basically clavulanate potassium similar to penicillin. It fights with bacteria which are resistant to amoxicillin or penicillin or other antibiotics of same family. Bacterial diseases like pneumonia, sinusitis, ear infections, skin infections, bronchitis and urinary infections are treated by the use of Augmentin. Augmentin is taken orally. This drug is used for many other purposes not listed here.
Augmentin although is very effective drug and used to cure numerous bacterial infections but like other drugs it has adverse effects too. Not everyone can withstand its dose. There are some people who are highly allergic to this drug and they are strictly prohibited from consuming it. People who are allergic to either amoxicillin or clavulanate potassium individually may also not able to withstand it and might produce its side effects in their bodies. The common side effects that occur in the body due to Augmentin allergy are severe watery diarrhea associated with blood, yellowing of skin color, dark brown urine, extreme weakness and fever, difficulty in breathing, easy bleeding and red rashes on skin. These symptoms are severe and need immediate medical attention.
If any of the above signs is visible in the patient he should immediately stop the usage of Augmentin and consult his physician for the change of antibiotic or other treatment of the allergy. Persons who have a history of any disease related to liver should also avoid the use of Augmentin. Liver patients are also recommended not to use the other drugs also of the penicillin family. If a doctor prescribes you Augmentin you should immediately inform him about your hepatic history, renal history and mononucleosis.
It is also advisable for the patients that the exact form and strength of Augmentin which is prescribed by the physician should be taken, like for instance if its chewable then continue with it, if its extended release, stick to it unless the doctor suggests. Changing the form from one to another may also be harmful. Young mothers who feed their babies should also avoid the use of this antibiotic. It dissolves in blood and mixes with the breast milk and from there it goes to the babies. Hence it is advisable for such ladies not to take Augmentin during the breast feeding period for the sake of their babies.
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