Amoxycillin/clavulanic acid is a penicillin antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections such as throat, ear, chest, bladder and kidney (urinary tract), and skin infections, as well as sexually transmitted diseases (e.g. gonorrhoea and syphilis). The addition of clavulanic acid to amoxicillin has reduced the problem of bacterial resistance to amoxicillin alone. It is available by prescription only, e.g. Augmentin. Possible common side effects include nausea, diarrhoea, heartburn, and oral or vaginal thrush (fungal infections). More serious possible side effects include severe, even fatal, allergic reactions, especially in people who are allergic to penicillin. Amoxycillin/clavulanic acid may make the contraceptive pill ineffective. Overdose in people with reduced kidney function requires hospitalisation.
Brand Names Available
Curam, Terry White Chemists Amoxycillin and Clavulanic Acid, Amoxycillin and Clavulanic Acid GenRx, Amoxycillin and Clavulanic Acid Chemmart, Augmentin (suspension), Augmentin Duo, Augmentin Duo Forte
Tablets, Capsules, Syrup/suspension, Injection, Schedule 4. Only available by prescription, Generic equivalents are available
What is it?
Antibiotic containing Penicillin
Antibiotics attack infection-causing bacteria and are used in the treatment of infections including throat, ear, chest, urinary tract (bladder and kidney), and skin infections. Amoxycillin is an excellent antibiotic, but many bacteria have become resistant to it. The addition of clavulanic acid to amoxicillin has reduced this problem considerably, making this a very effective, popular and widely used antibiotic
How does it work?
Penicillin antibiotics interfere with bacterial cell walls, either destroying or weakening the bacteria
Dosage and Directions for use
Adults: 375mg-750mg 8 hourly, or 875 mg 12 hourly
Children under 40 kg: 20 mg/kg/day in equally divided doses (based on the amoxicillin component)
Best taken immediately before food
Possible Side Effects
Allergic reactions from mild rash to fatal anaphylaxis
Antibiotics often change the natural balance of organisms within the body, which may lead to overgrowth problems such as candida infection (oral or vaginal thrush) and intestinal problems (psuedomembranous colitis). Nausea, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, and heartburn. Headaches. Dizziness.
Kidney damage. Liver damage. Blood changes (reduced red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets).
Pregnancy – safety has not been established. The benefits and risks need to be individually considered by the doctor prescribing the drug.
Breast feeding –excreted in breast milk, so benefits of treatment need to be wieghed up against potential harm to the baby. Decisions would be taken on an individual basis by the prescirbing doctor.
Aged – may need reduced doses, especially if kidney function is impaired.
Children – weight-based dosing is used.
Driving and hazardous work – no special precautions needed.
Known allergy to penicillin; moderate to severe renal impairment (high does combinations)
Overdose is uncommon but may occur in people who have reduced kidney function and do not excrete the drug effectively, leading to build up of drug levels. Convulsions and other signs of toxicity to the brain may occur and need to be treated in hospital
Interaction with other medicines
People who are allergic to penicillin can have potentially fatal reactions.
Co-amoxiclav may render the oral contraceptive pill ineffective as a contraceptive, making unplanned pregnancy possible.
Amoxycillin/clavulanic acid is a penicillin antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections such as throat, ear, chest, bladder and kidney (urinary tract), and skin infections, as well as sexually transmitted diseases (e.g. gonorrhoea and syphilis).
Amoxycillin/clavulanic acid, amoxicillin, amoxycillin, clavulanic acid, penicillin, antibiotic, augmentin, augmaxcil , clamentin , ranclav