What condition does Fidaxomicin treat?

Fidaxomicin is a type of medicine called a macrocyclic antibiotic. This is used for the treatment of infections in the intestine caused by a type of bacteria called Clostridium difficile (C. diff). This bacterium is often referred to as a superbug because infections with it can be very difficult to treat. Some symptoms may include:

  • Stomach cramping or pain
  • Mucus or blood in your stool
  • Persistent diarrhea

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this medication.

How does Fidaxomicin work?

Fidaxomicin works by killing the bacteria that are causing the infection. It is by directing and deactivating a bacterial enzyme known as RNA-polymerase. The bacteria use RNA-polymerase to create needed proteins and to duplicate their genetic information. Lacking this enzyme, the bacteria cannot duplicate and they die.

This medicine acts specifically on the bacteria and has little effect on the other bacteria that are normally found in the gut. Fidaxomicin also stops the bacteria from producing spores and toxins.

This antibiotic acts locally in the intestine and is not absorbed into the bloodstream in significant amounts. By killing the bacteria, this medicine treats the infection and helps to reduce the associated diarrhea. By killing the spores, Fidaxomicin may also make it less likely that the infection will come back.

What is the recommended dosage for Fidaxomicin?

Fidaxomicin is to be taken by mouth usually twice a day. The tablet is to be taken every 12 hours. You may take it with or without food. Take it with a full glass of water. Swallow the tablet as a whole do not chew or break it.

Remember to take it at the same time each day. The recommended dosage is based on your condition and response to the treatment. Continue taking the tablet until the prescription is finished. Stopping the medication suddenly may result in a return of the infection.

What are the side effects of Fidaxomicin?

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Gas
  • Stomach pain
  • Bloating
  • Skin itching or rash

What are the precautions in taking Fidaxomicin?

  • This drug should only be used to treat this type of intestinal bacterial infection.
  • This antibiotic will not work for other types of infections like viral infections.
  • This drug must not be taken if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. Inform your pharmacist and doctor if you have previously experienced such an allergy.
  • If you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist right away.
  • Inform your doctor if you have current medications including herbal products, food supplements, or vitamins.
  • To avoid some complications, do not take this drug more than the prescription.
  • Let your doctor know if your condition persists or worsens.
  • This medication may cause live bacterial vaccines such as typhoid vaccine to not work as well. Do not have any vaccinations or immunizations while having treatment with this medication unless your doctor tells you to do so.
  •  Keep this at a dry and clean place away from heat and moisture.