What Is The Shelf Life Of Amoxicillin
Amoxicillin capsules and tablets have an expiry date of around two years and, provided they are stored as recommended and in the original packaging, there will be a small leeway of safety if used beyond that period. However, this is not true with amoxicillin suspensions which have a much shorter shelf life of perhaps only seven to 10 days once they have been made up.
There are several reasons for these differences between oral and injectable forms of amoxicillin. Injections can be given by healthcare professionals who are familiar with handling their own stock or those supplied by pharmacies. On the other hand, most people do not know how to take the correct dosage on time from an ordinary package of capsules or tablets. They may also be concerned at the thought of swallowing something that looks like medication but doesn’t taste right. So, when you see the word’suspension’ written on the label, it means that it’s probably best taken exactly as it says – suspended in water. This form has been specially developed so that you don’t need to swallow any powdery particles; just add cold water. It should never be allowed to come into contact with foodstuffs or drinks. If kept refrigerated, the suspension will last for no more than ten days.
How long does Amoxicillin take to work?
The usual dose of 500mg three times daily (amoxycillin trihydrate) usually takes 3-5 days to treat bacterial infections such as tonsillitis, throat infection, urinary tract infection or chest infections. For skin and soft tissue infections, doses of 250mg twice daily are often sufficient although some strains of staphylococci may require higher dosages. You should consult your doctor before using the drug.
If you are allergic to penicillin, then non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), e.g., ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, ketoprofen, flurbiprofen, fenbufen, meclofenamic acid, piroxicam, indomethacin, diflunisal, celebrex, etodolac, or nadroparin calcium may be required to control symptoms associated with pain relief.
Side effects & Warnings
Common side effects include nausea, diarrhoea, rash, headache, dizziness, tiredness, stomach cramps, flatulence, fever, chills, urticaria (rash). These symptoms are mild to moderate and disappear within 24 hours after stopping taking the tablet or capsule. Occasionally, severe allergic reactions including difficulty breathing, tightness in the chest, hives, swelling of lips, tongue, mouth or throat, vomiting, itching, red rashes, blisters, peeling of skin, eyes, nose, mouth, or breathlessness occur. Symptoms indicate a serious allergy. Seek medical attention immediately.
Storage of medicines
Medicines must be protected from heat, moisture and light. To help protect against damage, keep medicine away from direct sunlight, where possible, and store it in a cool dry place. Do not use the blister pack after opening the lid. Keep all medicines out of reach of children and pets. Ask a relative or friend to get in touch with you if the medicine cannot be returned because of incorrect storage.
Do not eat them. Take the whole pack at one sitting. Drink plenty of fluids while taking the antibiotic.
Store below 30° C and above 15° C. Refrigerate after preparation. After dilution, store in the refrigerator.
Tell your doctor if you become pregnant or plan to stop breast feeding.
Pregnancy Category D – May harm unborn baby. Use only with caution. Not suitable for women.
Notify your doctor if you develop muscle weakness, loss of balance or double vision.
Be careful during hot weather, exercise or heavy lifting.
Never share your capsules or tablets with anyone else.
Your doctor may prescribe less frequent intervals between doses. Your condition may improve faster than normal without needing to continue treatment for as long as you would normally.
Always read the patient information leaflet provided with each medicinal product. Your pharmacist can advise you further regarding specific products.
To reduce the risk of accidental poisoning, keep the medicine out of sight and reach of children.
In case of accidental overdose seek immediate medical advice.
Allergy warning: See section 4 “About Allergies”.
Consult your doctor or health care professional early if you notice a sudden change in behaviour such as agitation, confusion, hallucinations, twitching movements, slurred speech, convulsions, coma, uncontrolled body temperature, rapid weight gain, increased thirst, constipation, diarrhoea, excessive sweating, paleness or jaundice.
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