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MetroGel (Generic Metronidazole Topical)

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Why is this medication prescribed?

MetroGel is a brand name for a medication called metronidazole, which is prescribed for various medical conditions. It is primarily used to treat bacterial and protozoal infections. Here are some common uses for MetroGel:

  • Bacterial Vaginosis (BV): MetroGel is often prescribed as a topical gel or cream for the treatment of bacterial vaginosis, a common vaginal infection caused by an imbalance of bacteria in the vagina.
  • Rosacea: MetroGel can be prescribed in both topical gel and oral forms to manage the symptoms of rosacea, a chronic skin condition characterized by facial redness, flushing, and sometimes pimples and pustules.
  • Dental Infections: Dentists may prescribe metronidazole, including MetroGel, to treat dental infections, especially if they are caused by anaerobic bacteria.
  • Other Infections: In some cases, metronidazole can be used to treat certain types of gastrointestinal infections, skin infections, and other infections caused by susceptible microorganisms.

How should this medicine be used?

The specific dosage and duration of MetroGel treatment will depend on the condition being treated, its severity, and your individual medical history. It’s important to follow your healthcare provider’s instructions carefully. Here are some general guidelines for using MetroGel:

  • Clean the Affected Area: Before applying MetroGel, clean and dry the affected area thoroughly. For example, when using it for rosacea, wash your face gently and pat it dry.
  • Apply a Thin Layer: When using the topical gel or cream, apply a thin layer of MetroGel to the affected area. It’s important to use only the amount prescribed by your healthcare provider.
  • Wash Your Hands: After applying MetroGel, wash your hands to avoid inadvertently spreading the medication to other areas.
  • Avoid Eyes and Mouth: Be careful to avoid contact with your eyes, mouth, and mucous membranes when applying MetroGel. If accidental contact occurs, rinse thoroughly with water.
  • Complete the Full Course: Even if your symptoms improve before you’ve finished the prescribed course of treatment, it’s crucial to complete the entire treatment regimen unless your healthcare provider instructs otherwise. This helps ensure that the infection is fully treated and prevents it from coming back.
  • Follow Your Healthcare Provider’s Advice: Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions regarding the use of MetroGel, including the frequency and duration of treatment.
  • Inform Your Doctor: Inform your healthcare provider about any allergies, medical conditions, or other medications you are taking before using MetroGel to avoid potential interactions or adverse effects.

Remember that MetroGel is a prescription medication, so it should only be used under the guidance of a healthcare professional. If you have any questions or concerns about its use or potential side effects, be sure to discuss them with your healthcare provider.

Other uses for this medicine

MetroGel is primarily prescribed for rosacea, but metronidazole, the active ingredient, can have other applications. These may include:

  • Bacterial Infections: Metronidazole is effective against certain bacterial infections, such as bacterial vaginosis, certain dental infections, and some skin infections.
  • Protozoal Infections: It can treat protozoal infections like trichomoniasis and giardiasis when taken orally.
  • Anaerobic Infections: Metronidazole is used in combination with other antibiotics to treat various anaerobic bacterial infections, such as intra-abdominal infections.

What special precautions should I follow?

When using MetroGel, it’s important to take certain precautions to ensure its safe and effective use. Here are some special precautions to keep in mind:

  • Allergies: Inform your healthcare provider if you are allergic to metronidazole or any other ingredients in MetroGel. Allergic reactions can be severe and require immediate medical attention.
  • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: Discuss with your healthcare provider if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding, as there may be potential risks associated with the use of MetroGel during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Your healthcare provider will weigh the benefits and risks before prescribing it.
  • Alcohol Interaction: Avoid consuming alcohol while using MetroGel and for at least 24 hours after the last dose. Combining metronidazole and alcohol can cause severe nausea, vomiting, headache, and flushing.
  • Neurologic Side Effects: In rare cases, metronidazole (the active ingredient in MetroGel) may cause neurologic side effects, such as peripheral neuropathy (tingling or numbness in the hands or feet). If you experience any unusual sensations, especially in the extremities, notify your healthcare provider promptly.
  • Blood Disorders: Metronidazole can affect blood cell counts. Inform your healthcare provider if you have a history of blood disorders or if you experience signs of blood problems, such as unexplained bruising, bleeding, or fever.
  • Interactions with Other Medications: Let your healthcare provider know about all the medications, supplements, and herbal products you are taking, as MetroGel can interact with certain drugs. It’s important to prevent potential interactions.
  • Skin Irritation: If you experience excessive skin irritation, redness, or a rash while using MetroGel, discontinue its use and contact your healthcare provider.

Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions and be sure to ask any questions or express concerns you may have about MetroGel. This will help ensure that the medication is used safely and effectively for your specific condition.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

MetroGel, which contains the active ingredient metronidazole, typically does not have specific dietary restrictions. However, it’s important to avoid alcohol while using this medication. It’s essential to completely avoid alcohol while taking MetroGel and for at least 24 hours after finishing your course of treatment. Alcohol can interact with metronidazole and lead to disulfiram-like reactions, which may include symptoms like nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, and flushing. These reactions can be quite uncomfortable.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If you forget a dose of MetroGel, follow these general guidelines:

  • Apply as Soon as Possible: If you forget to apply MetroGel, apply it as soon as you remember, unless it’s close to the time for your next scheduled dose.
  • Don’t Double Up: Do not apply a double dose to make up for the missed one. Continue with your regular dosing schedule.
  • Maintain the Schedule: Try to maintain a consistent schedule for applying MetroGel. Setting a reminder or using an alarm can help you remember to take it as prescribed.

What side effects can this medication cause?

MetroGel is a brand name for metronidazole, which is commonly used to treat bacterial infections. Like all medications, MetroGel can cause side effects. Not everyone will experience these side effects, and some people may experience them to a greater or lesser degree. Common side effects of MetroGel may include:

  • Gastrointestinal Side Effects:
    • Nausea
    • Vomiting
    • Diarrhea
    • Abdominal cramps or pain
    • Metallic taste in the mouth
  • Central Nervous System Effects:
    • Headache
    • Dizziness
    • Confusion (less common)
  • Vaginal Gel-Specific Side Effects:
    • Vaginal itching
    • Vaginal discharge
  • Less Common or Serious Side Effects:
    • Allergic reactions (rash, itching, swelling of the face or tongue, severe dizziness, difficulty breathing)
    • Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
    • Seizures (rare)
    • White patches or sores inside the mouth or on the lips
    • Dark urine or yellowing of the eyes or skin (jaundice)
    • Changes in taste perception

It’s important to note that while the majority of people using MetroGel experience only mild and temporary side effects, some individuals may experience more severe or persistent reactions. If you experience any severe or unusual side effects while using MetroGel, it is essential to contact your healthcare provider promptly.

Additionally, inform your healthcare provider about any other medications or supplements you are taking, as there can be interactions between drugs that may affect your treatment. Your healthcare provider will weigh the benefits of the medication against the potential side effects and can provide guidance on managing side effects if they occur. Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions for using MetroGel and report any concerns or adverse reactions to them.

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?

Regarding storage and disposal, here are some guidelines:


  • Store MetroGel at Room Temperature: Keep MetroGel at room temperature between 68°F and 77°F (20°C and 25°C). Avoid exposing it to excessive heat or moisture.
  • Protect from Light: Keep the medication in its original packaging or container, and protect it from light. Some medications can be sensitive to light.
  • Keep Out of Reach of Children and Pets: Store MetroGel in a secure location where children and pets cannot access it.
  • Do Not Freeze: Do not freeze MetroGel, as this can affect its stability and effectiveness.


  • Follow Local Regulations: Dispose of MetroGel according to your local regulations for medication disposal. Do not flush it down the toilet unless specifically instructed to do so.
  • Medication Take-Back Programs: Many communities have medication take-back programs or facilities where you can safely dispose of unused or expired medications. Check with your local pharmacy or healthcare facility for information on these programs.
  • Do Not Keep Unused Medication: Do not keep unused MetroGel beyond the prescribed treatment period. Dispose of any remaining medication after you have completed your course of treatment, even if there is some left.

In case of emergency or suspicion of an overdose, take the following steps:

In the event of an emergency or if you suspect an overdose of MetroGel, take the following steps:

  • Seek Medical Attention: If you or someone else has ingested oral MetroGel or applied excessive topical MetroGel and experiences severe symptoms or adverse reactions, seek immediate medical attention or call your local emergency number.
  • Poison Control: You can also contact your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 (United States) for guidance on what to do in case of overdose or exposure.

What other information should I know

  • Follow Prescribing Instructions: Always take MetroGel exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change the dose or stop the medication without consulting your healthcare provider.
  • Complete the Full Course: Complete the entire prescribed course of treatment with MetroGel, even if your symptoms improve before you finish. Stopping treatment prematurely can lead to the recurrence of the infection.
  • Keep Appointments: If your healthcare provider has scheduled follow-up appointments or tests while you are taking MetroGel, make sure to keep these appointments to monitor your progress and ensure that the medication is working as intended.
  • Inform Healthcare Provider: Inform your healthcare provider about all the medications (including over-the-counter and herbal supplements) you are taking, as well as any medical conditions or allergies you may have. This information is essential to prevent potential interactions and adverse effects.
  • Avoid Alcohol: As mentioned earlier, avoid consuming alcohol while taking MetroGel and for at least 24 hours after the last dose to prevent a disulfiram-like reaction.

Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions and advice regarding MetroGel and any other medications you may be prescribed. If you have any questions or concerns about its use or potential side effects, do not hesitate to discuss them with your healthcare provider or pharmacist.

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