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Prescription vs.OTC: Prescription by Doctor required
Last Updated: October 22, 2020

Ciprofloxacin is an antibiotic that is a member of the quinolone family of medicines. It is effective in treating infections that are caused by bacteria. Ciprofloxacin is used to treat patients with bacterial infections such as pneumonia, anthrax, syphilis, gonorrhea, bronchitis, gastroenteritis and plague.

This antibiotic is also used to fight against infections of the throat, skin, ears, nose, sinus, bones, respiratory system and urinary tract. Ciprofloxacin inhibits the regular synthesis of bacterial DNA, obstructing the process of their cell division. Therefore, it destroys the existing bacteria that are causing the infection, and it inhibits the growth of new bacteria.

Ciprofloxacin is an anti-biotic, which is a member of the fluoroquinolone family. It helps fight against infections caused by bacteria. It is used to treat severe bacterial infections including pneumonia, respiratory or urinary tract infections, gonorrhoea, anthrax, gastroenteritis as well as infections of the sinus, bones, skin and joints. It is also effective in treating septicemic plague.

Ciprofloxacin works by destroying the existing bacteria, that cause infection, from within the body and preventing the growth of new bacteria. The regular synthesis of DNA requires the presence of enzymes of bacterial DNA gyrase and topoisomerase IV.

Ciprofloxacin inhibits the activity of DNA gyrase, thus preventing DNA relaxation, encouraging the damage of double-stranded DNA and inhibiting the cell division of bacteria. In this way, Ciprofloxacin is efficient in fighting against bacterial infections within the body.

It is important to read the label of this medicine and follow the exact guidelines of the doctor’s prescription. Do not take an extra pill to make up for a missed dose, if you forget to take a dose. Instead, just continue with the next dose.

If you are allergic to Ciprofloxacin, you will experience rashes, hives, breathing problems, swelling of the throat, tongue, face or limbs and itchiness. If you notice these symptoms, it is advisable to stop taking this medicine immediately and contact your doctor.

In some cases, patients having certain disorders, who take this antibiotic, are more susceptible to its side effects. Therefore, before starting a prescription of this medicine, you should consult the doctor if you are allergic to Ciprofloxacin, blood disorders, conditions of the heart and low levels of magnesium in the blood.

Children and pregnant women should exercise caution before taking this medication. Although this antibiotic does treat infections, it does not treat infections like influenza, cold and viral infections.

Information given here is based on the salt content of the medicine. Uses and effects of the medicine may vary from person to person. It is advisable to consult a Internal Medicine Specialist before using this medicine.

The most common use of this medication is:

  • Allergy

  • Cns Stimulation

  • Discoloration Of Teeth

Following are the common side effects of this medicine:

  • How long is the duration of effect?

    Ciprofloxacin remains active in the body up to 24 hours after administration and is excreted in the urine.
  • What is the onset of action?

    Ciprofloxacin is rapidly absorbed from the Gastro-intestinal tract and reaches its peak levels after 2 to 2.5 hours of oral administration.
  • Are there any pregnancy warnings?

    Ciprofloxacin is considered safe for consumption by pregnant women. But there is a lack of conclusive evidence and hence, it must be used only when necessary after consulting a Doctor. Potential benefits and risks involved should be considered before taking the drug.
  • Is it habit forming?

    No habit forming tendencies were reported.
  • Are there any breast-feeding warnings?

    Ciprofloxacin is not expected to cause any adverse effects on the breastfed baby. However, a Doctor must be consulted before taking the drug.
  • Is It safe with alcohol?

    Consumption of alcohol with this medicine does not cause any harmful side effects.
  • Is it safe to drive while on this medicine?

    This medicine may affect the alertness of the patient, thus driving must be avoided if you are taking this medication.
  • Does this affect kidney function?

    Caution must be taken in patient with kidney disease. Adjustment of the dose might be needed. Consult your doctor before taking this medication.
  • Does this affect liver function?

    This medicine is probably found to be safe to use in patients with liver disease. Limited information is available to suggest dose adjustment in these patients. Kindly consult your doctor for further information.
  • Are there any missed dose instructions?

    The missed dose should be taken as soon possible. It is advisable to skip the missed dose if it's already time for your next scheduled dose.
  • Are there any overdose instructions?

    Seek emergency medical treatment or contact your doctor in case of an overdose.
  • India

  • United States

  • Japan

Below is the list of medicines, which contains Ciprofloxacin as ingredient

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The active constituent of this medication belongs to the class fluoroquinolones. It works as a bactericidal by inhibiting the bacterial DNA gyrase enzyme, which is essential for DNA replication, transcription, repair, and recombination. This leads to expansion and destabilization of the bacterial DNA and causes cell death.

Whenever you take more than one medicine, or mix it with certain foods or beverages, you"re at risk of a drug interaction.

  • Interaction with Alcohol

    Interaction with alcohol is unknown. It is advisable to consult your doctor before consumption.
  • Interaction with Lab Test

    Information not available.
  • Interaction with Medicine

    • CYP1A2 enzyme inhibitor
    • Enteral feedings may decrease plasma concentrations of Ciprofloxacin probably by >30% inhibition of absorption. Ciprofloxacin should not be administered with enteral feedings. The feeding would need to be discontinued for 1-2 hours prior to and after Ciprofloxacin administration. Nasogastric administration produces a greater loss of Ciprofloxacin bioavailability than does nasoduodenal administration.
    • Aluminum/magnesium products, didanosine, and sucralfate may decrease absorption of Ciprofloxacin by greater than or equal to 90% if administered concurrently.
    • RECOMMENDATION: Administer Ciprofloxacin 2 hours before dose OR administer Ciprofloxacin at least 4 hours and preferably 6 hours after the dose of these agents OR change to an H2-antagonist or omeprazole.
    • Calcium, iron, zinc, and multivitamins with minerals products may decrease absorption of Ciprofloxacin significantly if administered concurrently.
    • RECOMMENDATION: Administer Ciprofloxacin 2 hours before dose OR administer Ciprofloxacin at least 2 hours after the dose of these agents.
    • Increased toxicity:
      • Caffeine and theophylline CNS stimulation when concurrent with Ciprofloxacin.
      • Cyclosporine may increase serum creatinine levels.
  • Interaction with Disease

    Liver Disease

    Any incidence of liver disease should be reported to the Doctor. Suitable adjustment in dosage can be done based on the extent of the liver impairment.


    Suitable adjustment in dosage and duration should be made for patients who are at risk for Osteoporosis related fracture. Established treatment guidelines should be strictly followed in such cases.


    Any incidences of magnesium level imbalance should be reported to the Doctor. The imbalance could occur due to a disease or due to other medication used by the patient. Regular monitoring is recommended for patients taking Ciprofloxacin.
  • Interaction with Food

    • Food: Decreases rate, but not extent, of absorption. Drug may cause GI upset; take without regard to meals (manufacturer prefers that drug is taken 2 hours after meals)
    • Dairy products, oral multivitamins, and mineral supplements: Absorption decreased by divalent and trivalent cations. These cations bind to and form insoluble complexes with quinolones. Avoid taking these substrates with Ciprofloxacin. The manufacturer states that the usual dietary intake of calcium has not been shown to interfere with Ciprofloxacin absorption.
    • Caffeine: Possible exaggerated or prolonged effects of caffeine. Ciprofloxacin reduces total body clearance of caffeine. Patients consuming regular large quantities of caffeinated beverages may need to restrict caffeine intake if excessive cardiac or CNS stimulation occurs.

Ques: Does the use of Ciprofloxacin cause diarrhea?

Ans: Yes, the use of this medication causes diarrhea as it is an antibiotic which kills the harmful bacteria. However, it affects the helpful bacteria in your stomach or intestine and can cause diarrhea. If your symptoms are severe, consult your doctor immediately about it.

Ques: Can I stop taking Ciprofloxacin when I feel better?

Ans: No, do not stop taking Ciprofloxacin and complete the full course of treatment even if you feel better. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cured.

Ques: Does the use of Ciprofloxacin increase the risk of muscle damage?

Ans: Yes the use of Ciprofloxacin increases the risk of muscle damage, commonly in the ankle. Muscle damage can happen in people of all ages who take Ciprofloxacin medication. Consult your doctor if you feel any kind of muscle pain while using this medication.

Ques: Is Ciprofloxacin safe?

Ans: Ciprofloxacin is relatively a safe drug. However, it is not devoid of side-effects and hence it should be taken only if prescribed by a doctor and must take appropriate dose as prescribed, frequency and duration as advised.

Ques: Can I take Ciprofloxacin with paracetamol?

Ans: Consult your doctor before using both the medications together as Ciprofloxacin is not known to have any clinically meaningful interaction with paracetamol.
Disclaimer: The information produced here is best of our knowledge and experience and we have tried our best to make it as accurate and up-to-date as possible, but we would like to request that it should not be treated as a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Lybrate is a medium to provide our audience with the common information on medicines and does not guarantee its accuracy or exhaustiveness. Even if there is no mention of a warning for any drug or combination, it never means that we are claiming that the drug or combination is safe for consumption without any proper consultation with an expert.

Lybrate does not take responsibility for any aspect of medicines or treatments. If you have any doubts about your medication, we strongly recommend you to see a doctor immediately.

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Table of Content
About Ciprofloxacin
What are the uses of Ciprofloxacin
What are the contraindications of Ciprofloxacin ?
What are the side effects of Ciprofloxacin ?
Key highlights of Ciprofloxacin
What are the dosage instructions?
Where is the Ciprofloxacin approved?
Medicines containing Ciprofloxacin
How does this medication work?
What are the interactions of Ciprofloxacin ?
FAQs about Ciprofloxacin