Levofloxacin

Medication Information Leaflet

What is this medication for?

Levofloxacin is an antibiotic that is used to treat bacterial infections. These infections may include those of the lungs, bone, joints, skin, eyes and ears.

How should I take/use this medication?

Oral tablets

  • You may take this medication with or without food.
  • Take this medication at the same time each day.
  • Complete the course of antibiotics as prescribed by your doctor. Incomplete treatment may cause infections to recur.
  • Do check with your healthcare professional before stopping your medication.

Eye drops

  1. Wash and dry your hands before using the eye drops.
  2. Shake the bottle and remove the cap.
  3. Tilt your head back and pull your lower eyelid downwards to form a pocket.
  4. Hold the tip of the bottle near your eye. Do not touch your eye with the tip of the bottle.
  5. Gently, squeeze the bottle to instil one drop into your eye.
  6. Release the lower eyelid and close your eye.
  7. Press the inner corner of your eye (the tear duct). This helps to stop the medication from draining away and keeps it in your eye.
  8. Repeat steps 1 to 7 for the other eye if you have been instructed to use the eye drops for both eyes. If you need more than 1 drop to the eye, repeat steps 1 to 7 after 5 minutes.
  9. Replace the cap.

What should I do if I forget to take/use this medication?

If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember. Then take your next dose at the usual time. If it is less than 8 hours until the next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time. Do not take two doses to make up for the missed dose.

What precautions should I take?

Inform your healthcare professional if:

  • You have any other medical conditions such as:
    • Epilepsy (fits or seizures)
    • Myasthenia gravis (a long-term immune condition that causes muscle weakness)
  • You are allergic to this medication or any of the other ingredients of this medication
  • You are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding
  • You are taking any other medications, including supplements, traditional medications and herbal remedies
  • You have existing heart problems or are on any medicine that regulates your heartbeat
  • You have glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency

What are some common side-effects of this medication?

Oral tablets

  • Nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite
    • Eat mild tasting food, and avoid rich or spicy meals.
    • Take this medication after meals.
  • Diarrhoea
    • Drink plenty of water with oral rehydration salts to replenish your fluids and electrolytes.
    • Speak to your healthcare professional if the diarrhoea is severe or bloody.
  • Dizziness
    • Rest, and wait for it to go away before resuming daily activities.
    • Avoid driving or operating machinery if affected.
  • Increased sensitivity to sunlight
    • Apply sunblock, wear long sleeves and trousers, and avoid being exposed to direct sunlight especially during the hottest time of the day while taking Levofloxacin.

Eye preparations

  • Temporary blurring of vision after use
    • Do not drive or operate machinery until you can see clearly again.

What are some rare but serious side-effects that I need to seek medical advice immediately?

  • Painful swelling of the joints or tendons
  • Sudden chest, stomach or back pain
  • Burning, tingling or numbing sensations or muscle pain/weakness
  • Change in mood, thoughts or behaviour
  • New or worsening thoughts of harming yourself or ending your life
  • Seizures (fits)

How do I know if I am allergic to this medication?

The symptoms of a drug allergy include one or more of the following:

  • Swollen face/eyes/lips/tongue
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Skin rashes over your whole body

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should stop your medication and see your healthcare professional immediately.

What food or medication should I avoid when I take this medication?

Oral tablets

Avoid consuming the following foods or medications together with Levofloxacin:

  • Milk-containing products or dairy products (e.g. milk feeds)
  • Indigestion remedies (e.g. Antacids)
  • Medicines (e.g. Sucralfate) or supplements that contain aluminium, calcium, iron, magnesium or zinc.
  • Medicines that acts as binders (e.g. Lanthanum, Sevelamer)

You should take the above products 2 hours before or after Levofloxacin as taking them together reduces the absorption of Levofloxacin into your body.

Certain medications may increase the risk of side effects of Levofloxacin if taken together with Levofloxacin. These medications are (but not limited to):

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Theophylline
  • Cyclosporine
  • Probenecid

Consult your healthcare professional if you can continue taking them with Levofloxacin.

How should I store this medication?

Store in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight. Keep this medication away from children.

How should I throw away this medication safely?

Pack the medication into a bag and bring it back to the pharmacy where you received the medication from.

Discard eye drops 4 weeks after opening. ‚Äč

Disclaimers

If you take more than the recommended dose, please seek medical advice immediately. The information provided on this page does not replace information from your healthcare professional. Please consult your healthcare professional for more information.

This article is jointly developed by members of the National Medication Information workgroup. The workgroup consists of cluster partners (National Healthcare Group, National University Health System and SingHealth), community pharmacies (Guardian, Unity and Watsons) and Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore. The content does not reflect drug availability and supply information in pharmacies and healthcare institutions. You are advised to check with the respective institutions for such information.

Last updated on July 2021

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