Clindamycin Hydrochloride

CLINDAMYCIN HYDROCHLORIDE- clindamycin hydrochloride capsule
Blenheim Pharmacal, Inc.

To reduce the development of drug-resistant bacteria and maintain the effectiveness of clindamycin hydrochloride and other antibacterial drugs, clindamycin hydrochloride should be used only to treat or prevent infections that are proven or strongly suspected to be caused by bacteria.

WARNING

Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD) has been reported with use of nearly all antibacterial agents, including clindamycin hydrochloride and may range in severity from mild diarrhea to fatal colitis. Treatment with antibacterial agents alters the normal flora of the colon, leading to overgrowth of C. difficile.

Because clindamycin hydrochloride therapy has been associated with severe colitis which may end fatally, it should be reserved for serious infections where less toxic antimicrobial agents are inappropriate, as described in the INDICATIONS AND USAGE section. It should not be used in patients with nonbacterial infections such as most upper respiratory tract infections. C. difficile produces toxins A and B, which contribute to the development of CDAD. Hypertoxin producing strains of C. difficile cause increased morbidity and mortality, as these infections can be refractory to antimicrobial therapy and may require colectomy. CDAD must be considered in all patients who present with diarrhea following antibiotic use. Careful medical history is necessary since CDAD has been reported to occur over two months after the administration of antibacterial agents.

If CDAD is suspected or confirmed, ongoing antibiotic use not directed against C. difficile may need to be discontinued. Appropriate fluid and electrolyte management, protein supplementation, antibiotic treatment of C. difficile , and surgical evaluation should be instituted as clinically indicated.

INDICATIONS AND USAGE

Clindamycin is indicated in the treatment of serious infections caused by susceptible anaerobic bacteria.

Clindamycin is also indicated in the treatment of serious infections due to susceptible strains of streptococci, pneumococci, and staphylococci. Its use should be re­served for penicillin-allergic patients or other patients for whom, in the judgment of the physician, a penicillin is inappropriate. Because of the risk of co­li­tis, as described in the WARNING box, before selecting clindamycin, the physician should consider the nature of the infection and the suitability of less toxic alternatives (e.g., erythromycin).

Anaerobes: Serious respiratory tract infections such as empyema, anaerobic pneumonitis, and lung abscess; serious skin and soft tissue infections; septicemia; intra-abdominal infections such as peritonitis and intra-abdominal abscess (typically resulting from anaerobic organisms resident in the normal gastrointestinal tract); infections of the female pelvis and genital tract such as endometritis, nongonococcal tubo-ovarian abscess, pelvic cellulitis, and postsurgical vaginal cuff infection.

Streptococci: Serious respiratory tract infections; serious skin and soft tissue infections.

Staphylococci: Serious respiratory tract infections; serious skin and soft tissue infections.

Pneumococci: Serious respiratory tract infections.

Bacteriologic studies should be performed to determine the causative organisms and their susceptibility to clindamycin.

To reduce the development of drug-resistant bacteria and maintain the effectiveness of clindamycin hydrochloride and other antibacterial drugs, clindamycin hydrochloride 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

Clindamycin hydrochloride is contraindicated in individuals with a history of hypersensitivity to preparations containing clindamycin or lincomycin.

WARNINGS

See WARNING box.

Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea

Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD) has been reported with use of nearly all antibacterial agents, including clindamycin, and may range in severity from mild diarrhea to fatal colitis. Treatment with antibacterial agents alters the normal flora of the colon, leading to overgrowth of C. difficile.

C. difficile produces toxins A and B, which contribute to the development of CDAD. Hypertoxin producing strains of C. difficile cause increased morbidity and mortality, as these infections can be refractory to antimicrobial therapy and may require colectomy.

CDAD must be considered in all patients who present with diarrhea following antibiotic use. Careful medical history is necessary since CDAD has been reported to occur over two months after the administration of antibacterial agents.

If CDAD is suspected or confirmed, ongoing antibiotic use not directed against C. difficile may need to be discontinued. Appropriate fluid and electrolyte management, protein supplementation, antibiotic treatment of C. difficile, and surgical evaluation should be instituted as clinically indicated.

Severe Skin Reactions

Severe skin reactions such as Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis, some with fatal outcome, have been reported. In case of such an event, treatment should be permanently discontinued.

A careful inquiry should be made concerning previous sensitivities to drugs and other allergens.

Usage in Meningitis

Since clindamycin does not diffuse adequately into the cerebrospinal fluid, the drug should not be used in the treatment of meningitis.

PRECAUTIONS

General

Review of experience to date suggests that a subgroup of older patients with associated severe illness may tolerate diarrhea less well. When clindamycin is indicated in these patients, they should be carefully monitored for change in bowel frequency.

Clindamycin hydrochloride should be prescribed with caution in individuals with a history of gastrointestinal disease, particularly colitis.

Clindamycin hydrochloride should be prescribed with caution in atopic individuals.

Indicated surgical procedures should be performed in conjunction with antibiotic therapy.

The use of clindamycin hydrochloride occasionally results in overgrowth of nonsusceptible organisms–particularly yeasts. Should superinfections occur, appropriate measures should be taken as indicated by the clinical situation.

Clindamycin dosage modification may not be necessary in patients with renal disease. In patients with moderate to severe liver disease, prolongation of clindamycin half-life has been found. However, it was postulated from studies that when given every eight hours, ac­cum­ulation should rarely occur. There­fore, dosage modification in patients with liver disease may not be necessary. However, periodic liver enzyme deter­mina­tions should be made when treating patients with severe liver disease.

Prescribing clindamycin hydrochloride 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.

Information for Patients

Patients should be counseled that antibacterial drugs, including clindamycin hydrochloride should only be used to treat bacterial infections. They do not treat viral infections (e.g., the common cold). When clindamycin hydrochloride is prescribed to treat a bacterial infection, patients should be told that although it is common to feel better early in the course of therapy, the medication should be taken exactly as directed. Skipping doses or not completing the full course of therapy may (1) decrease the effectiveness of the immediate treatment and (2) increase the likelihood that bacteria will develop resistance and will not be treatable by clindamycin hydrochloride or other antibacterial drugs in the future.

Diarrhea is a common problem caused by antibiotics which usually ends when the antibiotic is discontinued. Sometimes after starting treatment with antibiotics, patients can develop watery and bloody stools (with or without stomach cramps and fever) even as late as two or more months after having taken the last dose of the antibiotic. If this occurs, patients should contact their physician as soon as possible.

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