Common Brand Name(s): Furatine , Macrodantin
Important: How To Use This Information
This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
This medication is used to treat or prevent certain urinary tract infections.
This medication is an antibiotic that works by stopping the growth of bacteria. It will not work for viral infections (e.g., common cold, flu). Unnecessary use or overuse of any antibiotic can lead to its decreased effectiveness.
Nitrofurantoin should not be used in children less than one month of age due to the risk of a certain blood problem (hemolytic anemia).
How To Use
Take this medication by mouth, with food or milk, as directed by your doctor. This medication is usually taken four times daily to treat an infection or once daily at bedtime to prevent infections. Swallow the medication whole. Avoid using magnesium trisilicate-containing antacids while taking this medication. Magnesium trisilicate-containing antacids bind with nitrofurantoin, preventing its full absorption.
Dosage and duration is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. For children, the dosage is also based on body weight.
For the best effect, take this antibiotic at evenly spaced times. To help you remember, take this medication at the same time(s) every day.
When taking this medication to prevent infection, take it exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not skip doses or stop taking it without your doctor's approval. Inform your doctor if you notice signs of a new urinary tract infection (e.g., pain while you are urinating).
If you are taking this medication to treat an infection, continue to take this medication until the full-prescribed amount is finished, even if symptoms disappear after a few days. Stopping the medication too early may allow bacteria to continue to grow, which may result in a relapse of the infection. Inform your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.
Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, or headache may occur. Take this medication with food to help minimize nausea. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
This medication may cause your urine to turn dark yellow or brown in color. This effect is harmless and will disappear when the medication is stopped.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
This medication may rarely cause very serious (possibly fatal) lung problems. Lung problems may occur within the first month of treatment or after long-term use of nitrofurantoin (generally for 6 months or longer). Get medical help right away if you develop symptoms of lung problems, including:
- persistent cough
- chest pain
- shortness of breath/trouble breathing
- joint/muscle pain
- bluish/purplish skin
Tell your doctor right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur:
- new signs of infection (e.g., fever, persistent sore throat)
- easy bruising/bleeding
- mental/mood changes
- persistent or severe headaches
- vision changes
This drug may rarely cause serious (possibly fatal) liver disease, blood or nerve problems. Tell your doctor right away if you notice any of the following rare but very serious side effects:
- persistent nausea/vomiting
- dark urine
- yellowing of eyes/skin
- unusual/persistent fatigue
- fast/pounding heartbeat
- numbness/tingling of the arms/legs
- muscle weakness
This medication may rarely cause a severe intestinal condition (Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea) due to a type of resistant bacteria. This condition may occur during treatment or weeks to months after treatment has stopped. Do not use anti-diarrhea or opioid medications if you have any of the following symptoms because these products may make them worse. Tell your doctor right away if you develop:
- persistent diarrhea
- abdominal or stomach pain/cramping
- blood/mucus in your stool
Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new vaginal yeast infection (e.g., oral or vaginal fungal infection). Contact your doctor if you notice white patches in your mouth, a change in vaginal discharge, or other new symptoms.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including:
- itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat)
- severe dizziness
- trouble breathing
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before taking nitrofurantoin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have:
- little or no urine output (oliguria or anuria)
- severe kidney disease
- certain genetic conditions (glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency)
- a history of liver problems due to nitrofurantoin use in the past
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:
- certain blood disorders (e.g., anemia)
- kidney or liver problems
- lung diseases
- certain nerve problems (peripheral neuropathy)
- certain eye diseases (optic neuritis)
- untreated mineral imbalance
- vitamin B deficiency
Nitrofurantoin may cause live bacterial vaccines (such as typhoid vaccine) to not work as well. Do not have any immunizations/vaccinations while using this medication unless your doctor tells you to.
Kidney function declines as you grow older. This medication is removed by the kidneys. Therefore, older adults may be at a greater risk for side effects while using this drug, especially nerve, liver or lung problems (see Side Effects section).
This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. This medication should not be taken if you are at term (weeks 38-42 of pregnancy), near or at the time of delivery due to possible harm to the newborn, such as a certain blood problem (hemolytic anemia). Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
This medication passes into breast milk and may have undesirable effects on nursing infants less than one month old and infants with a certain genetic condition (G-6-PD deficiency). Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
See also the How to Use section.
Your healthcare professionals (e.g., doctor or pharmacist) may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for it. Do not start, stop or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of:
This drug can affect the results of certain urine glucose tests (cupric sulfate-type). Make sure laboratory personnel and your doctors know you use this drug.
This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
This medication has been prescribed for your current condition only. Do not use it later for another infection unless your doctor tells you to.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., complete blood counts, tests for kidney and liver function, urine cultures) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.
Information last revised January 2020.
Copyright(c) 2020 First Databank, Inc.
Conditions of use: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information in not intend to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects nor should it be construed in indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.