Rifampicin is an antibiotic used to treat and prevent tuberculosis and other in
fections. This medicine can treat only bacterial infections.
Uses of Rifampicin
- A severe form of lung inflammation (Legionnaires disease)
- Other bacterial serious infections like Brucellosis, Staphylococcal infections, etc.
Contraindications of Rifampicin
When should one not use Rifampicin
- If you have any allergic reaction to Rifampicin
- Liver problem
- Have a rare blood problem called porphyria
Side effects of Rifampicin
Common side effects of this drug are:
- Stomach upset
- Inability to concentrate
- Change in behaviour
- Muscular weakness
- Vision changes
- Painful or irregular menstruation
- Flushing and itchiness
- Lack of coordination
Precautions and Warnings of Rifampicin
Can I take Rifampicin during pregnancy?
This medicine should not be taken during pregnancy as it can affect the growth of your unborn baby and may cause complications to the mother and the baby after birth.
Can I take Rifampicin while breastfeeding?
Do not breastfeed your baby as small amounts of Rifampicin can pass into breast milk.
Can I drive if I have consumed Rifampicin?
You may feel dizzy or faint, have problems with vision or have other side effects that could affect your ability to drive while taking this medicine. If this happens, do not drive.
Can I consume alcohol with Rifampicin?
No relevant information found yet.
Other General Warnings
Talk to your doctor if
- May cause yellowing of the skin, whitening of the eye and urine
- You are taking other antiviral medicines like Saquinavir or Ritonavir (as you may develop liver problems if you are also taking Rifampicin)
- If you have kidney disease, talk to your doctor before taking this medicine
Mode of Action of Rifampicin
How Does It Work?
It works by interfering with bacterial covering; thus, bacterial growth is hindered and the existing ones are killed by immunity or their lifecycle ends.
Interactions of Rifampicin
Interactions with other medicines
- Heart ailment medicine like Digoxin
- Anti-infectives like Chloramphenicol, Clarithromycin, Quinolones such as Ciprofloxacin
- Antimalarial medicines like Atovaquone, Quinine
- Anti-seizure medicines like Phenytoin, Phenobarbital, Lamotrigine
- Antifungals like Itraconazole, Ketoconazole
- Benzodiazepines like Midazolam
- Blood thinners like Warfarin
- Calcium channel blockers like Diltiazem, Nimodipine, Verapamil
- Anti-cancer medicines like Imatinib, Irinotecan
- Certain oral medicines for diabetes like Repaglinide
Interactions with food items
It has known interactions with alcohol. Do not drink alcohol while taking this medicine. Also, Increase fluid intake.
Dosage of Rifampicin
Overdose symptoms of Rifampicin may include nausea, vomiting, itching, headache, weakness, fast or uneven heart rate, or feeling like you might pass out. Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have had an overdose of this medicine....
Missed a Dose
It is ideal not to miss even a single medicine. Take medicine as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to the regular dosing schedule. Do not double the dose....
Dr. Ravi Kakarla
Dr. Ritu Budania
MBBS, MD (Pharmacology)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: What should I discuss with my healthcare expert before taking this medicine?
A: You should not take this medicine if you are allergic to it. Before taking this medicine, tell your doctor if you have liver disease or porphyria (a genetic enzyme disorder that causes symptoms affecting the skin or nervous system). Give a detailed account of your medical and surgical history. Also, mention to your doctor all the prescription and non-prescription medicines, herbal preparations and nutritional supplements that you may be taking before starting this medication.
Q: When and how to consume the medicine?
A: Take this medicine with a full glass of water on an empty stomach one hour before or two hours after a meal or with small portions of food.
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