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Wymox (Generic Amoxicillin)

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Why is this medication prescribed?

Amoxicillin is a widely prescribed antibiotic that belongs to the penicillin class of antibiotics. It is used to treat a variety of bacterial infections. Some common reasons why amoxicillin may be prescribed include:

  • Respiratory Infections: Amoxicillin is often prescribed to treat respiratory infections such as bronchitis, pneumonia, and sinusitis.
  • Ear Infections: It is effective against certain types of bacterial ear infections, particularly in children.
  • Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs): Amoxicillin can be used to treat urinary tract infections caused by susceptible bacteria.
  • Skin Infections: Certain skin infections caused by bacteria may be treated with amoxicillin.
  • Dental Infections: Amoxicillin is sometimes used to treat dental infections, including dental abscesses.
  • Strep Throat: Amoxicillin is a common choice for treating streptococcal throat infections.
  • Gastrointestinal Infections: In some cases, amoxicillin may be prescribed for certain gastrointestinal infections.

How should this medicine be used?

It’s crucial to take amoxicillin exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Here are general guidelines for its use:

  • Dosage: The dosage of amoxicillin will depend on the type and severity of the infection, as well as your age, weight, and overall health. Always take the prescribed dose.
  • Timing: Amoxicillin is usually taken with or without food every 8 or 12 hours, depending on the prescription. It’s important to space the doses evenly throughout the day.
  • Completion of Course: Even if you start feeling better before the entire prescribed course is completed, it’s important to finish all the medication. This helps ensure that the infection is completely eradicated and reduces the risk of antibiotic resistance.
  • Do Not Skip Doses: If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it’s almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular schedule.
  • Do Not Self-Prescribe: Never use leftover antibiotics or share antibiotics with others. Only take antibiotics that have been prescribed to you by a healthcare professional.
  • Side Effects: Like any medication, amoxicillin can have side effects. Common side effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and rash. If you experience severe or persistent side effects, contact your healthcare provider.
  • Allergies: Inform your healthcare provider if you are allergic to penicillin or any other antibiotics. Allergic reactions can be serious and may require immediate medical attention.

Always consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice regarding the use of amoxicillin or any other medication.

Other uses for this medicine

Apart from its primary use as an antibiotic for bacterial infections, amoxicillin might be prescribed for other purposes. Some examples include:

  • Prophylaxis: Amoxicillin may be used to prevent bacterial infections in individuals at risk, such as those with certain heart conditions before dental procedures.
  • Helicobacter pylori Eradication: In combination with other medications, amoxicillin may be used to treat infections caused by Helicobacter pylori, a bacterium associated with peptic ulcers.
  • Lyme Disease: Amoxicillin can be used to treat early-stage Lyme disease.
  • Respiratory Tract Infections: It’s commonly prescribed for respiratory tract infections, such as sinusitis, bronchitis, and pneumonia.

What special precautions should I follow?

Special precautions to consider when using amoxicillin include:

  • Allergies: Inform your healthcare provider if you are allergic to amoxicillin, other penicillins, cephalosporins, or any other medications. Allergic reactions can range from mild rashes to severe, life-threatening reactions.
  • Medical History: Provide a complete medical history to your healthcare provider, including any history of kidney disease, liver disease, mononucleosis, or allergic reactions to drugs.
  • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: Inform your healthcare provider if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding. While amoxicillin is generally considered safe during pregnancy and breastfeeding, your healthcare provider will weigh the benefits and risks.
  • Interactions with Other Medications: Inform your healthcare provider about all the medications you are taking, including over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Some medications may interact with amoxicillin, affecting its effectiveness or increasing the risk of side effects.
  • Diarrhea: Antibiotics, including amoxicillin, can sometimes cause diarrhea. If you develop severe or persistent diarrhea during or after the use of amoxicillin, inform your healthcare provider, as it may be a sign of a more serious condition.
  • Resistance: Overuse or misuse of antibiotics can contribute to antibiotic resistance. Take amoxicillin exactly as prescribed, and do not use leftover antibiotics for self-treatment.
  • Birth Control Pills: Amoxicillin may reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives. Use an additional form of contraception, such as condoms, while taking amoxicillin and for a short period afterward.

Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions and contact them if you have any concerns or experience unusual symptoms while taking amoxicillin.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

There are generally no specific dietary restrictions associated with amoxicillin. However, it’s important to take the medication with food or milk if it upsets your stomach. This can help reduce the risk of gastrointestinal side effects.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If you forget to take a dose of amoxicillin, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it’s almost time for your next scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not double up on doses to make up for a missed one.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Amoxicillin is an antibiotic commonly used to treat bacterial infections. While it is generally considered safe and well-tolerated, like any medication, it can cause side effects in some people. Common side effects of amoxicillin include:

  • Gastrointestinal Issues: This is the most common set of side effects and may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain.
  • Allergic Reactions: Some individuals may be allergic to amoxicillin, leading to allergic reactions such as rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness, or difficulty breathing. In rare cases, severe allergic reactions like anaphylaxis can occur, which is a medical emergency.
  • Yeast Infections: Amoxicillin can disrupt the normal balance of bacteria in the body, potentially leading to overgrowth of yeast and causing a fungal infection, especially in the mouth or genital area.
  • Dermatological Effects: Skin reactions such as rash and hives are possible side effects.
  • Hematologic Effects: Amoxicillin can rarely affect blood cell counts, leading to conditions like leukopenia (low white blood cell count), thrombocytopenia (low platelet count), and anemia.
  • Kidney Issues: In rare cases, amoxicillin can cause kidney problems, usually manifested by changes in urine color or frequency.
  • Hepatic Effects: Liver dysfunction is a rare side effect, which may cause symptoms such as jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

It’s important to note that not everyone will experience these side effects, and many people tolerate amoxicillin well. If you notice any unusual or severe side effects, it’s crucial to contact your healthcare provider promptly. Additionally, if you have a history of allergies, particularly to antibiotics, make sure to inform your healthcare provider before taking amoxicillin.

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

Storage and Disposal of Amoxicillin:

  • Storage:
    • Store amoxicillin at room temperature, away from light and moisture.
    • Keep it out of reach of children.
    • Do not store in the bathroom, as moisture and humidity can affect the medication.
  • Disposal:
    • Dispose of any unused or expired amoxicillin properly. Do not flush it down the toilet unless specifically instructed to do so.
    • Follow local guidelines or drug take-back programs for safe disposal. Many communities have designated locations for medication disposal.

In case of emergency/overdose

If you suspect an overdose or experience severe symptoms, seek emergency medical attention. Symptoms of an overdose may include:

  • Severe nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Blood in the urine
  • Confusion
  • Seizures

What other information should I know?

  • Complete the Course: Finish the entire prescribed course of amoxicillin, even if you start feeling better before it’s finished. This helps ensure that the infection is fully treated and reduces the risk of antibiotic resistance.
  • Follow Healthcare Provider’s Instructions: Take amoxicillin exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change the dosage or stop taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
  • Inform Healthcare Provider: Inform your healthcare provider about all medications, including over-the-counter drugs, supplements, and herbal products, that you are taking. Some medications may interact with amoxicillin.
  • Birth Control Considerations: If you are using oral contraceptives, such as birth control pills, additional contraceptive methods (e.g., condoms) may be advisable, as amoxicillin can reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives.
  • Regular Check-ups: Attend follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider to monitor your progress and address any concerns.
  • Allergic Reactions: Be aware of signs of allergic reactions, such as rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness, or difficulty breathing. Seek medical attention if you experience these symptoms.
  • Avoid Alcohol: While there is no specific contraindication against moderate alcohol consumption with amoxicillin, it’s generally advisable to limit alcohol intake when taking medications.

Always consult with your healthcare provider or pharmacist if you have specific questions or concerns about your prescription. They can provide guidance tailored to your individual health status and the specific conditions being treated.

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