Cephalexin is generally used to treat infections that result from bacteria, such as urinary tract infections; pneumonia; and ear, bone and skin infections. It is a prescribed medication and is classified as a cephalosporin antibiotic. As with any type of medication, there are some potential side effects that are often associated with taking cephalexin.
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Less Severe Side Effects
There are some common side effects that can occur with cephalexin use. They are generally mild and subside quickly. They include vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach upset and mild skin rash. If these side effects do not go away, or if they are particularly severe, a person should seek medical attention.
Severe Side Effects
There are some severe side effects that also can result from taking cephalexin, including an excessive skin rash, hives, itchiness, sore throat, mouth and throat sores that are painful, vaginal infection, wheezing, unexplained bruising or bleeding, and difficulty breathing or swallowing. If these side effects occur, medical attention should be sought immediately.
Other Side Effects
Other side effects include headache, dizziness, confusion, disorientation, bloody stools, swollen throat and skin peeling. If these symptoms persist, a doctor should be consulted.
Rare Side Effects
There are some extremely rare cephalexin side effects that less than 1 per cent of its users experience. Some of these rare effects include exhaustion, joint aches, hallucinations, anaemia, vaginal discharge, severe infection of the intestines (known as enterocolitis), low blood platelets (known as thrombocytopenia) and seizures. People who experience these unusual side effects should seek emergency medical attention.
Cephalexin has some interactions with other medications. People who are taking medications such as aminoglycosides (such as kanamycin and tobramycin), typhoid vaccination medicines, metformin (including Glumetza and Fortamet) and probenecid (such as Probalan and Benemid) should avoid taking cephalexin.
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