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(klor am fen' i kol)Chloramphenicol injection may cause a decrease in the number of certain types of blood cells in the body. In some cases, people who experienced this decrease in blood cells later developed leukemia (cancer that begins in the white blood cells). You may experience this decrease in blood cells whether you are being treated with chloramphenicol for a long time or a short time. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately: pale skin; excessive tiredness; shortness of breath; dizziness; fast heartbeat; unusual bruising or bleeding; or signs of infection such as sore throat, fever, cough, and chills. Your doctor will order laboratory tests regularly during your treatment to check whether the number of blood cells in your body has decreased. You should know that these tests do not always detect changes in the body that may lead to a permanent decrease in the number of blood cells. It is best that you receive chloramphenicol injection in the hospital so that you can be closely monitored by your doctor. Chloramphenicol injection should not be used when another antibiotic can treat your infection. It must not be used to treat minor infections, colds, flu, throat infections or to prevent the development of an infection. Talk to your doctor about the risks of receiving chloramphenicol injection.
Before receiving chloramphenicol injection,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to chloramphenicol injection or any other medications.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: anticoagulants (''blood thinners'') such as warfarin (Coumadin); aztreonam (Azactam); cephalosporin antibiotics such as cefoperazone (Cefobid), cefotaxime (Claforan), ceftazidime (Fortaz, Tazicef), and ceftriaxone (Rocephin); cyanocobalamin (vitamin B12); folic acid; iron supplements; certain oral medications for diabetes such as chlorpropamide (Diabinese) and tolbutamide; phenobarbital; phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek); rifampin (Rimactane, Rifadin); and medications that may cause a decrease in the number of blood cells in the body. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if any of the medications that you are taking may cause a decrease in the number of blood cells. Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects. Other medications may also interact with chloramphenicol injection, so be sure to tell your doctor about all the medications you are taking, even those that do not appear on this list.
- tell your doctor if you have ever been treated with chloramphenicol injection before, especially if you experienced severe side effects. Your doctor may tell you not to use chloramphenicol injection.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney or liver disease.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while receiving chloramphenicol injection, call your doctor.
- if you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are receiving chloramphenicol injection.
- tongue or mouth sores
- swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
- difficulty swallowing or breathing
- watery or bloody stools (up to 2 months after your treatment)
- stomach cramps
- muscle aches or weakness
- feelings of numbness, pain, or tingling in an arm or leg
- sudden changes in vision
- pain with eye movement