See CONTRAINDICATIONS section.
Levels of trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole in breast milk are approximately 2 to 5% of the recommended daily dose for infants over 2 months of age. Caution should be exercised when sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim is administered to a nursing woman, especially when breastfeeding, jaundiced, ill, stressed, or premature infants because of the potential risk of bilirubin displacement and kernicterus.
Clinical studies of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently from younger subjects.
There may be an increased risk of severe adverse reactions in elderly patients, particularly when complicating conditions exist, e.g., impaired kidney and/or liver function, possible folate deficiency, or concomitant use of other drugs. Severe skin reactions, generalized bone marrow suppression (see WARNINGS and ADVERSE REACTIONSsections), a specific decrease in platelets (with or without purpura), and hyperkalemia are the most frequently reported severe adverse reactions in elderly patients. In those concurrently receiving certain diuretics, primarily thiazides, an increased incidence of thrombocytopenia with purpura has been reported. Increased digoxin blood levels can occur with concomitant sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim therapy, especially in elderly patients. Serum digoxin levels should be monitored. Hematological changes indicative of folic acid deficiency may occur in elderly patients. These effects are reversible by folinic acid therapy. Appropriate dosage adjustments should be made for patients with impaired kidney function and duration of use should be as short as possible to minimize risks of undesired reactions (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATIONsection). The trimethoprim component of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim may cause hyperkalemia when administered to patients with underlying disorders of potassium metabolism, with renal insufficiency or when given concomitantly with drugs known to induce hyperkalemia, such as angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors. Close monitoring of serum potassium is warranted in these patients. Discontinuation of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim treatment is recommended to help lower potassium serum levels. Sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim tablets contain 0.45 mg sodium (0.02 mEq) of sodium per tablet. Sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim DS tablets contain 0.9 mg (0.04 mEq) of sodium per tablet. Pharmacokinetics parameters for sulfamethoxazole were similar for geriatric subjects and younger adult subjects. The mean maximum serum trimethoprim concentration was higher and mean renal clearance of trimethoprim was lower in geriatric subjects compared with younger subjects (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY: Geriatric Pharmacokinetics).
The most common adverse effects are gastrointestinal disturbances (nausea, vomiting, anorexia) and allergic skin reactions (such as rash and urticaria).
FATALITIES ASSOCIATED WITH THE ADMINISTRATION OF SULFONAMIDES, ALTHOUGH RARE, HAVE OCCURRED DUE TO SEVERE REACTIONS, INCLUDING STEVENS-JOHNSON SYNDROME, TOXIC EPIDERMAL NECROLYSIS, FULMINANT HEPATIC NECROSIS, AGRANULOCYTOSIS, APLASTIC ANEMIA AND OTHER BLOOD DYSCRASIAS (SEE
Agranulocytosis, aplastic anemia, thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, neutropenia, hemolytic anemia, megaloblastic anemia, hypoprothrombinemia, methemoglobinemia, eosinophilia.
Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis, anaphylaxis, allergic myocarditis, erythema multiforme, exfoliative dermatitis, angioedema, drug fever, chills, Henoch-Schoenlein purpura, serum sickness-like syndrome, generalized allergic reactions, generalized skin eruptions, photosensitivity, conjunctival and scleral injection, pruritus, urticaria and rash. In addition, periarteritis nodosa and systemic lupus erythematosus have been reported.
Hepatitis (including cholestatic jaundice and hepatic necrosis), elevation of serum transaminase and bilirubin, pseudomembranous enterocolitis, pancreatitis, stomatitis, glossitis, nausea, emesis, abdominal pain, diarrhea, anorexia.
Renal failure, interstitial nephritis, BUN and serum creatinine elevation, toxic nephrosis with oliguria and anuria, crystalluria and nephrotoxicity in association with cyclosporine.
Metabolic and Nutritional
Hyperkalemia, hyponatremia (see PRECAUTIONS: Electrolyte Abnormalities).
Aseptic meningitis, convulsions, peripheral neuritis, ataxia, vertigo, tinnitus, headache.
Hallucinations, depression, apathy, nervousness.
The sulfonamides bear certain chemical similarities to some goitrogens, diuretics (acetazolamide and the thiazides) and oral hypoglycemic agents. Cross-sensitivity may exist with these agents. Diuresis and hypoglycemia have occurred rarely in patients receiving sulfonamides.
Arthralgia and myalgia. Isolated cases of rhabdomyolysis have been reported with sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim, mainly in AIDS patients.
Cough, shortness of breath and pulmonary infiltrates (see WARNINGS).
Weakness, fatigue, insomnia.
Postmarketing Experience The following adverse reactions have been identified during post-approval use of trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole. Because these reactions were reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure:
- Thrombotic thrombocytopenia purpura
- Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura
- QT prolongation resulting in ventricular tachycardia and torsade de pointes
The amount of a single dose of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim that is either associated with symptoms of overdosage or is likely to be life-threatening has not been reported. Signs and symptoms of overdosage reported with sulfonamides include anorexia, colic, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headache, drowsiness and unconsciousness. Pyrexia, hematuria and crystalluria may be noted. Blood dyscrasias and jaundice are potential late manifestations of overdosage.
Signs of acute overdosage with trimethoprim include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headache, mental depression, confusion and bone marrow depression. General principles of treatment include the institution of gastric lavage or emesis, forcing oral fluids, and the administration of intravenous fluids if urine output is low and renal function is normal. Acidification of the urine will increase renal elimination of trimethoprim. The patient should be monitored with blood counts and appropriate blood chemistries, including electrolytes. If a significant blood dyscrasia or jaundice occurs, specific therapy should be instituted for these complications. Peritoneal dialysis is not effective and hemodialysis is only moderately effective in eliminating sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim.
Use of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim at high doses and/or for extended periods of time may cause bone marrow depression manifested as thrombocytopenia, leukopenia and/or megaloblastic anemia. If signs of bone marrow depression occur, the patient should be given leucovorin 5 to 15 mg daily until normal hematopoiesis is restored.
Sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim tablets are contraindicated in pediatric patients less than 2 months of age.
Urinary Tract Infections and Shigellosis in Adults and Pediatric Patients, and Acute Otitis Media in Children
The usual adult dosage in the treatment of urinary tract infections is 1 sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim DS (double strength) tablet or 2 sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim tablets every 12 hours for 10 to 14 days. An identical daily dosage is used for 5 days in the treatment of shigellosis.
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