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Ampicillin

Ampicillin by Dava Pharmaceuticals

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A broad spectrum antibiotic widely used in the treatment of kennel cough, tonsillitis, urinary infections, bacterial gastroenteritis, abscessed, dermatitis and other bacterial infections in dogs and cats.

Ampicillin (Principen) kills bacteria by preventing them from building a proper cell wall while they grow. It accomplishes this by inhibiting the linking of peptidoglycan chains that are a major component in both gram-positive and some gram-negative bacteria’s cell walls.

Aminopenicillins
(Ampicillin, Amoxicillin)

Common Drug Name
Ampicillin
Amoxicillin

Common Brand Names 
Ampicillin: Polyflex (injectable)  
Amoxicillin: Amoxi-Drops, Biomox, and  Robamox-V 
Generic products are available.

Storage 
Store at room temperature in a tight, light resistant childproof container.  
Once the oral suspension is reconstituted (the powder is mixed with water), store in the refrigerator and use within 14 days. 

Uses 
Aminopenicillins, also called broad-spectrum or ampicillin penicillins. They are used for the treatment of susceptible bacterial infections such as bite wounds, and bladder, upper respiratory, and oral infections in multiple species including dogs, cats, ferrets, and birds. They are generally not effective against Staphylococcal infections.

Do NOT use ampicillin or amoxicillin in rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas, or hamsters since it will affect the normal bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract and possibly cause a fatal diarrhea.

Dose and Administration
 
Always follow the dosage instructions provided by your veterinarian. If you have difficulty giving the medication, contact your veterinarian.

Ampicillin: For best absorption of ampicillin, give 1 hour prior to feeding or 2 hours after feeding. May be given with
food if necessary to decrease side effects, such as vomiting. 
Amoxicillin: Oral amoxicillin is better absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract than ampicillin. Amoxicillin may be given with food. 

Reconstituted oral suspensions should be refrigerated and the remainder discarded in 14 days. Shake well before use.

Ampicillin and amoxicillin must be given for at least 7-10 days for effectiveness; if given less than that, infections are likely to recur or become worse. Follow your veterinarian?s recommendations and use all of the medication prescribed.

If you miss a dose, give it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to the regular schedule. Do not give 2 doses at once. 

This medication should only be given to the pet for whom it was prescribed. 

Possible Side Effects
 
May see lack of appetite, drooling, vomiting, or diarrhea. Contact your veterinarian if you observe any of these effects in your pet.

If your pet experiences an allergic reaction to the medication, signs may include facial swelling, hives, scratching, sudden onset of diarrhea, vomiting, shock, seizures, pale gums, cold limbs, or coma. If you observe any of these signs, contact your veterinarian immediately. 

Precautions 
Not for use in animals hypersensitive (allergic) to penicillins or beta-lactam
antibiotics such as cephalosporins. 

Aminopenicillins cross the placenta, although no detrimental results to fetuses have been reported. The safety of aminopenicillins in breeding, pregnant, or lactating animals (those nursing their young) has not been established. 
Use with caution in very small animals who may be dehydrated or have kidney or heart disorders.

Human Precautions
People with hypersensitivities (allergies) to penicillins or beta-lactam antibiotics such as cephalosporins should not handle the aminopenicillins, since allergic reactions could occur just from contact. 

Drug, Food, and Test Interactions
Consult your veterinarian before using ampicillin or amoxicillin with vitamins, supplements, bacteriostatic antibiotics (such as erythromycin or tetracyclines), or anticoagulants (blood thinners, such as heparin or warfarin), since interactions may occur.   
Ampicillin may cause false-positive urine glucose results.

Signs of Toxicity/Overdose
May see vomiting or diarrhea. Dogs on high doses or long-term use may show signs of incoordination (difficulty walking). If you know or suspect your pet has had an overdose, or if you observe any of these signs in your pet, contact your veterinarian immediately. 

Keep this and all other medications out of the reach of children and pets.
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