What is this medicine?
RIFAXIMIN is an antibiotic that fights bacterial infection only in the intestines.
Rifaximin is used to treat travelers' diarrhea caused by E. coli in adults and children who are at least 12 years old. Most people get this infection by eating food or drinking fluids that have been contaminated with the bacteria.
Rifaximin is also used to lower the risk of worsened brain function, or hepatic encephalopathy, in adults with liver failure. Brain function can be affected when the liver stops working and cannot remove toxic substances from the body.
What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?
You should not use take Rifaximin if you are allergic to rifaximin or medications such as rifabutin (Mycobutin), rifampin (Rifater, Rifadin, Rifamate), or rifapentine (Priftin).
If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a Rifaximin dose adjustment or special tests:
- severe liver disease;
- diarrhea with a fever; or
- watery or bloody diarrhea.
FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether Rifaximin will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using Rifaximin. It is not known whether rifaximin passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use Rifaximin without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
How should I take this medicine?
Take Rifaximin exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Rifaximin can be taken with or without food.
Take this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Rifaximin will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu, or any form of diarrhea that is caused by a virus. Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 24 hours, or if they get worse while taking rifaximin. Rifaximin does not treat all bacterial forms of traveler's diarrhea.
What if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What should I watch for while taking this medicine?
Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or bloody, stop taking Rifaximin and call your doctor. Do not use anti-diarrhea medicine unless your doctor tells you to.
What side effects may I notice from this medicine?
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Rifaximin: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using Rifaximin and call your doctor at once if you have a fever or diarrhea that is watery or bloody.
Less serious Rifaximin side effects are more likely, and may include:
- bloating, gas, stomach pain;
- feeling like you need to empty your bowel urgently;
- feeling like your bowel is not completely empty;
- nausea, vomiting, constipation;
- headache, dizziness;
- tired feeling; or
- swelling in your hands, feet, or torso.
What may interact with this medicine?
There may be other drugs that can interact with Xalatan. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.
Where can I keep my medicine?
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.