Neomycin

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Generic Name: Neomycin Brand Name(s): Generics only. No brands available.

Uses

What is Neomycin used for?

Neomycin is used to decrease the risk of infection after certain intestinal surgeries. Neomycin belongs to a class of drugs known as aminoglycoside antibiotics. It works by stopping the growth of bacteria in the intestines.

Neomycin may also be used along with a special diet to treat a certain serious brain problem (hepatic encephalopathy). This condition is caused by too much of a certain natural substance (ammonia). Normally, the liver gets rid of ammonia, but liver disease can cause too much ammonia to build up in the body. This medication helps treat encephalopathy by killing certain intestinal bacteria that make ammonia.

This antibiotic treats only bacterial infections. It will not work for viral infections (such as common cold, flu). Unnecessary use or misuse of any antibiotic can lead to its decreased effectiveness.

How should I take Neomycin?

Take this medication by mouth exactly as prescribed by your doctor.

To decrease the risk of infection after intestinal surgery, this medication is usually taken for 3 or 4 doses the day before surgery, or as directed by your doctor. Carefully follow your doctor’s directions for any diet restrictions and using this medication or other products before surgery.

For treating hepatic encephalopathy, this medication is usually taken four times a day for 5 to 6 days, or as directed by your doctor.

Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. To decrease your risk of hearing loss and other side effects, take this medication at the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time. Do not increase your dose, take it more frequently, or take it for a longer time than prescribed. The manufacturer recommends that this medication should not be taken for longer than 2 weeks during each treatment period.

If you are taking this medication for hepatic encephalopathy, take it at evenly spaced times for the best effect. To help you remember, take it at the same times each day. Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.

How do I store Neomycin?

Neomycin is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Neomycin in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Neomycin that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush Neomycin down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using Neomycin?

Before taking neomycin tablets, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other aminoglycoside antibiotics (such as tobramycin); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: hearing problems (including deafness, decreased hearing), intestinal problems (including blockage, swelling, ulcers), kidney problems, myasthenia gravis, Parkinson’s disease.

High doses or longer use of neomycin may cause your body to not properly absorb some foods, nutrients (such as iron, Vitamins A and B-12), and drugs (such as digoxin, warfarin). Consult your doctor for more details.

Neomycin may cause live bacterial vaccines (such as typhoid vaccine) to not work as well. Do not have any immunizations/vaccinations while using this medication unless your doctor tells you to.

Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).

Newborn and premature babies may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially hearing problems.

This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Although there have been reports of harm in babies born to women using similar drugs, the risk for harm may not be the same with this drug. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.

It is unknown if this drug passes into breast milk. However, many doctors consider breastfeeding safe while using this medication. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breast-feeding?

There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using this Neomycin during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Neomycin. Neomycin is pregnancy risk category D according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:

  • A=No risk,
  • B=No risk in some studies,
  • C=There may be some risk,
  • D=Positive evidence of risk,
  • X=Contraindicated,
  • N=Unknown

Side effects

What side effects can occur from Neomycin?

Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: difficulty walking, numbness/tingling, muscle twitching or weakness, seizure.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with Neomycin?

Other medications that may affect the kidneys or hearing may increase the risk of kidney damage or hearing loss if taken with neomycin. Some examples include: amikacin, tobramycin, amphotericin B, cidofovir, cisplatin, polymyxin B, cephalosporins such as cephaloridine, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen, among others.

Although most antibiotics are unlikely to affect hormonal birth control such as pills, patch, or ring, a few antibiotics (such as rifampin, rifabutin) can decrease their effectiveness. This could result in pregnancy. If you use hormonal birth control, ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Neomycin may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

Does food or alcohol interact with Neomycin?

Neomycin may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with Neomycin?

Neomycin may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using this Neomycin.

What is the dose of Neomycin for an adult?

Usual Adult Dose for Bowel Preparation

1 g orally every hour for 4 doses followed by 1 g every 4 hours for 5 doses

Alternate dosing: 6 g/day orally divided every 4 hours for 2 to 3 days

Usual Adult Dose for Hepatic Encephalopathy

4 to 12 g/day orally divided every 4 to 6 hours for 5 to 6 days

Usual Adult Dose for Hepatic Coma

4 to 12 g/day orally divided every 4 to 6 hours for 5 to 6 days

Usual Adult Dose for Diarrhea

3 g/day orally in 4 divided doses

Renal Dose Adjustments

Patients with impaired renal function have a high risk of developing nephrotoxicity and ototoxicity with oral neomycin. Use of a less nephrotoxic medication may be a consideration for this patient.

Liver Dose Adjustments

In chronic hepatic insufficiency, it may be necessary to give neomycin sulfate 4 g daily for an indefinite period, if less toxic drugs cannot be used.

Dose Adjustments

Caution should be used when administering neomycin to patients with renal impairment. Dose reduction should be considered in these patients.

Dialysis

Patients with impaired renal function have a high risk of developing nephrotoxicity and ototoxicity with oral neomycin. Use of a less nephrotoxic medication may be a consideration for this patient.

What is the dose of Neomycin for a child?

Usual Pediatric Dose for Bowel Preparation

The safety and efficacy of neomycin in children less than 18 years of age has not been established. However, the use of neomycin may be appropriate is some situations.

Less than 1 month: 50 mg/kg/day orally divided every 6 hours

1 year to 18 years: 50 to 100 mg/kg/day orally divided every 6 hours

Usual Pediatric Dose for Hepatic Encephalopathy

The safety and efficacy of neomycin in children less than 18 years of age has not been established. However, the use of neomycin may be appropriate is some situations.

1 month to 18 years: 50 to 100 mg/kg/day orally divided every 6 to 8 hours for 5 to 6 days

Usual Pediatric Dose for Hepatic Coma

The safety and efficacy of neomycin in children less than 18 years of age has not been established. However, the use of neomycin may be appropriate is some situations.

1 month to 18 years: 50 to 100 mg/kg/day orally divided every 6 to 8 hours for 5 to 6 days

Usual Pediatric Dose for Diarrhea

The safety and efficacy of neomycin in children less than 18 years of age has not been established. However, the use of neomycin may be appropriate is some situations.

Less than 1 month: 50 mg/kg/day orally divided every 6 hours

1 year to 18 years: 50 mg/kg/day orally divided every 6 hours for 2 to 3 days

How is Neomycin available?

Neomycin is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Oral solution,
  • Oral tablet,
  • Compounding powder

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of Neomycin, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Review Date: April 5, 2018 | Last Modified: April 5, 2018

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