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Do Antibiotics Give You Diarrhea

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How To Stop Diarrhea While Taking Antibiotics

Q/A: How to Prevent Diarrhea when Taking Antibiotics? Part One

To help prevent antibiotic-associated diarrhea, try to:

  • Take antibiotics only when necessary. Dont use antibiotics unless your doctor feels theyre
  • Ask caregivers to wash their hands. If youre hospitalized, ask everyone to wash his or her hands
  • Tell your doctor if youve had antibiotic-associated diarrhea before.

Can You Give A Cat Acidophilus When On Antibiotics

Keep feeding it to your cat even after the antibiotics are finised. She will need time for the friendly bacteria to grow and become restablished in her intestinal tract. This is a common physical reaction to antibiotics, as has already been well explained. I, too, recommend giving Teddy acidophilus.

Veterinarians often find it controversial to give antibiotics to treat diarrhea, but when antibiotics do resolve the diarrhea, they speculate that the cause of this kind of diarrhea was from a small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.

What You Can Do In The Meantime

Continue taking your antibiotics as directed by your doctor.

To cope with diarrhea until your appointment, you can:

  • Drink more water and other liquids to replace fluids lost because of diarrhea
  • Eat bland foods and avoid spicy or greasy foods that can aggravate diarrhea

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What Foods Should You Eat To Treat Diarrhea

If youre experiencing diarrhea from antibiotics, adjusting your diet may help ease your symptoms. Some general suggestions include:

  • Eating low fiber foods. While high fiber foods are recommended when youre healthy, eating them when you have diarrhea can make your condition worse.
  • Replacing potassium. This nutrient can be lost due to diarrhea, but eating foods containing potassium may help replace it.
  • Replenishing lost fluids and salts. Diarrhea can cause you to lose fluids and electrolytes more rapidly, so its important to replace these.

Based on these suggestions, try to consume the following foods and beverages when you have diarrhea:

  • fluids including water, broths, or decaffeinated tea
  • fruit such as bananas, applesauce, or small amounts of canned fruit without syrup
  • grains such as white rice, white bread, and noodles
  • peeled potatoes that have been boiled or baked
  • protein sources like poultry, lean meats, and fish
  • yogurt that contains live cultures

Some types of food may worsen your symptoms or interfere with your antibiotic treatment. These include:

Also, try to avoid eating grapefruit or taking calcium supplements. These can both interfere with how well antibiotics are absorbed by your body, and can diminish the effects of the medication.

In addition to adjusting your diet, there are other steps you can take to help ease your symptoms.

Search Strategy And Study Selection

What Causes IBS along With Alternating Constipation ...

The flow of the meta-analysis, from search to study selection, is depicted in Fig. . The literature search identified 128 relevant studies. An overview of these studies, including the reasons for their exclusion, is presented in Additional file . A total of 32 trials satisfied our inclusion criteria and were included in the meta-analysis: 26 were obtained from previous reviews and six from direct database searches . The specific characteristics of all included studies are summarized in Additional file .

Fig. 1

Prescriptions of antibiotics in The Netherlands including those for high risk of AAD. The data have been extracted from the Genees- en hulpmiddelen Informatie Project from the Zorginstituut Nederland, that collects trends on use of medication in the Netherlands as reported by health insurance companies. Grey bars indicate the antibiotics that are associated with a higher risk of AAD

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Study Selection And Inclusion Criteria

In this review we chose to only include studies that had a clear definition of antibiotic-associated diarrhea, to be able to compare their results in a systematic way. However, studies lacking a precise definition of diarrhea may still provide valuable information, and it could be a subject for future discussions how to interpret them and whether to take them into account when formulating recommendations. Furthermore, the strict definition of diarrhea used in some studies means that the protective effect of probiotics against AAD may have been underestimated . Given the scope of the review, we searched for clinical trials involving the use of antibiotics, but we didnt apply strict inclusion criteria regarding the kind of antibiotic used. We didnt look for studies using specific treatments, nor did we exclude studies that did not indicate which antibiotics they used, since diarrhea can be a side-effect of many. Five of the studies that we included did not specify which antibiotic was administered to the patients during the clinical trial. Of the remaining 27 studies, 21 enrolled patients taking different antibiotics, including antibiotic such as broad-spectrum penicillins and cephalosporins associated with a high-risk of AAD.

How To Prevent Diarrhea While Taking Antibiotics

Many individuals endure an upset stomach when taking certain antibiotics to fight or kill bacterial infections. Diarrhea along with gas and abdominal cramping are common ailments. Long-term usage of antibiotics can lead to infections such as colitis or even the inflammation of your colon.

The main concern with antibiotics that kill bacteria in your lungs, sinuses and other places, is that the antibiotics also affects the digestive balance in your intestine.

This is one of the main reasons why many experts recommend not overusing antibiotics and taking them only when you truly need them to fight an infection or virus . There are also certain precautions you can follow to decrease or even completely stop diarrhea.

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The Good And Bad Of Antibiotics

When antibiotics eliminate the good bacteria as well as the bad, the loss causes a disruption to the balance in your gut, which can lead to inflammation and digestive troubles. The most common of these troubles is diarrhea.

Broad-spectrum antibiotics are the ones most likely to cause you diarrhea. This side effect is often mild and only temporary, stopping once the antibiotics are finished.

However, in some cases, antibiotic-associated diarrhea lingers. This is typically seen in individuals with weakened immune systems or those living in nursing homes. In these cases, a more serious infection can result in painful conditions, like colitis and toxic megacolon.

If you notice that antibiotics are causing diarrhea, you can speak with your doctor. It may be possible to change the dosage or switch to another antibiotic. Not every antibiotic cause this side effect in every person, so there may be an alternative that treats your infection without diarrhea.

In addition to this, you can also avoid certain foods that are known to trigger diarrhea:

Fatty foods

High-fiber foods like whole grains



Beyond that, you can also add a probiotic to your daily routine. Probiotics help to support the natural bacterial community living in your gut. These bacteria help promote digestion but also work to support your immune system.

Medications Used For Dog Diarrhea

ASK UNMC! How can I prevent diarrhea while taking antibiotics?

Metronidazole and Tylosin are two antibiotics that have known anti-inflammatory properties in the gastrointestinal tract. When a bacterial overgrowth is suspected, additional antibiotics may be added, such as amoxicillin.

Probiotics and fiber can be an important part of resolving diarrhea. The good bacteria in the GI consume fiber and produce short-chain fatty acids that help heal the intestine.

In the case of diarrhea caused by cancer, a chemotherapeutic drug may be prescribed.

Antacids and stomach protectants can help to resolve stomach and upper GI irritation, and anti-nausea drugs are often added when vomiting or inappetence is an issue.

Other options include deworming and/or anti-inflammatories such as prednisone.

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Can Antibiotics Cause Diarrhea

Yes, antibiotics can cause diarrhea and heres why.

Antibiotics target bacteria by taking advantage of structures and processes that bacterial cells have that are different from our own cells. So, while antibiotics dont harm our own cells, they can kill both good and bad bacteria living in your intestines.

Not all bacteria is bad. There are many types of good bacteria that live in your intestines. These good bacteria help with the digestive process and they also play a role in keeping you healthy. Antibiotics can disrupt the balance of these bacteria. One of the side effects of killing off the good bacteria, in addition to the bad bacteria, is the possibility of looser stools.

Another job thats done by good bacteria is to keep the growth of opportunistic bacteria in check. These bacteria, such as Clostridium difficile, can cause infections if theyre allowed to thrive, which can happen if good bacteria are killed off by antibiotics.

Toxins produced by C. diff can cause inflammation in the intestines, leading to diarrhea. Studies estimate that

Treating Diarrhea And Upset Stomach From Antibiotics

Most often, just time and light foods are the best medicine for diarrhea and upset stomach caused by antibiotics:

  • Make sure to maintain good hydration for your child with plenty of water avoid fruit juice or soft drinks as these can make diarrhea worse.
  • Follow the directions that come with the antibiotic. Does it say to take with food? This may help to minimize stomach upset.
  • Maintain healthy eating habits. Make sure your child is consuming plenty of fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains if possible.
  • You should give probiotics only if your primary care provider or pediatric gastroenterologist recommends them .
  • There is no use for anti-diarrheal medications such as loperamide please refrain from using these medications.

Although rare, pay attention to any symptoms such as severe diarrhea that contains blood or mucous, fever, severe stomach pain and extreme weakness. If these symptoms are present, please seek medical attention for your child.

If the diarrhea persists despite time and light foods, or if its present for more than 7-10 days, check in with your childs pediatrician or gastroenterologist.

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Onsequences Of Travelers’ Diarrhea

Antibiotic-associated diarrhea may affect 2-5% of those treated with fluoroquinolones or macrolides.115 This clinical diagnosis should be considered in the differential among TD patients who are treated with antibiotics yet who have persistent or worsening symptoms. Other notable complications of TD include reactive arthritis and Campylobacter jejuni-associated Guillain-Barré syndrome.

Chronic diarrhea has been estimated to affect 1% of all travelers.113 Steffen’s study among Swiss travelers in the 1980s showed that 11% of travelers who developed acute diarrhea went on to experience chronic diarrhea.7 A total of 20 of the 73 cases of chronic diarrhea were associated with protozoa, such as amoeba or Giardia the rest were undiagnosed. The highest rate of chronic diarrhea was noted after travel in West Africa and East Asia. One-third of the patients became symptomatic only after returning home some after more than a 1-month delay. Chronic diarrhea ranked second of all travel related illness in days of inability to work. Furthermore, a recent study reported out of the GeoSentinel network found that among long term travelers compared to short term travelers more often experienced chronic diarrhea, giardiasis, or irritable bowel syndrome , suggesting unique exposures to this traveler sub-population.116

John W. Sanders, … Herbert L. DuPont, in, 2019

Pay Attention To What You Eat

Acute diarrhea in (inflammatory, non

Would you like to get probiotics from food? Many types of yogurt contain probiotics. Look for active and live cultures on the label. It is advised to consume one or two plain Greek yogurts per day for patients consuming antibiotics. However, if eating dairy triggers stomach problems, go easy on dairy heavy foods while consuming antibiotics.

People who have more GI symptoms usually develop more GI side effects while consuming antibiotics, but each case is unique.

Foods that do not harm others may upset you, trust your gut. If spicy foods are usually cause you upset stomachs, avoid them when taking antibiotics. If sugar is your trigger, avoid sugary foods. Although fiber is usually important for digestion, you may need to decrease your consumption if your diarrhea flares up while you are taking antibiotics.

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Lifestyle And Home Remedies

To cope with diarrhea:

  • Drink enough fluids. To counter a mild loss of fluids from diarrhea, drink more water or drinks that contain electrolytes. For a more severe loss, drink fluids that contain water, sugar and salt such as oral rehydration solution. Try broth or fruit juice that isn’t high in sugar. Avoid beverages that are high in sugar or contain alcohol or caffeine, such as coffee, tea and colas, which can worsen your symptoms.

    For infants and children with diarrhea, ask your doctor about using an oral rehydration solution, such as Pedialyte, to replenish fluids and electrolytes.

  • Avoid certain foods. It’s a good idea to avoid dairy as well as fatty and spicy foods while you have diarrhea. You can usually get back to a normal diet soon after your symptoms resolve.
  • Ask about anti-diarrheal medications. In some cases of mild antibiotic-associated diarrhea, your doctor may recommend anti-diarrheal medications, such as loperamide . But check with your doctor before taking anti-diarrheal medications because they can interfere with your body’s ability to eliminate toxins and lead to serious complications. These medications should not be used if you develop C. difficile infection.

Antibiotics And Diarrhea: Understand The Reaction

Any antibiotic can cause you to have diarrhea, whether you take it orally or by injection, but broad-spectrum antibiotics antibiotics that kill a wide range of bacteria are the most likely to affect you. These include Cleocin , certain types of penicillin, and cephalosporins.

Most of the time, diarrhea as an antibiotics side effect is mild and will stop on its own or when you stop taking your medicine. However, antibiotic-associated diarrhea is also seen a lot in patients who are hospitalized or in nursing homes, says Dr. Parkman. And then it can be more serious. In some elderly, ill, and hospitalized patients, antibiotics can result in a Clostridium difficile infection, which can produce a toxin that can lead to serious complications such as inflammation in the colon wall , severe dehydration, or toxic megacolon, in which the colon becomes distended and may rupture.

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Probiotics May Help Prevent Diarrhea Due To Antibiotic Use

ARCHIVED CONTENT: As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date each article was posted or last reviewed. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.

Eating yogurt or taking a so-called probiotic when you have to take antibiotics may help prevent the diarrhea that often accompanies antibiotic treatment.

Thats the conclusion of a study just published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. A team of California-based researchers combined the results of 63 randomized trials pitting probiotics versus placebo among almost 12,000 men and women taking antibiotics. Those who took antibiotics plus probiotics were 42% less likely to develop diarrhea as those who got the placebo.

About one in three people who take antibiotics develop diarrhea. The symptoms usually start on the last day or two of antibiotic therapy, or a day or so after it has ended. The diarrhea is usually mild, with two to four loose stools per a lasting for a couple days. In most cases, it gets better quickly without treatment. That said, antibiotic-associated diarrhea makes some people very sick. The most severe form, called C. difficile colitis, can be life threatening.

Take With Or Without Food

Antibiotics, Probiotics, and Diarrhea

Check the label on your antibiotics. Does it recommend taking them with food or on an empty stomach?

In either case, follow the directions. Some antibiotics are better absorbed on an empty stomach, so you dont want to limit their effectiveness. But if the label says, Take with food, taking your pills with a meal might help ease stomach issues.

Beyond the specifics above, good old-fashioned advice for treating diarrhea still applies. Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration, and use rehydrating beverages high in electrolytes if needed. Avoid alcohol and caffeine if theyre making your diarrhea worse. Keep in mind alcohol may actually cause severe reactions while you are taking certain antibiotics, so check the label for that information, as well. Eat a more bland diet than you might normally eat.

Its better to use caution than get hit with unpleasant side effects.

Common sense would say you are going to disturb the natural balance with antibiotics, Dr. Rabovsky says, so anything else that causes you GI symptoms could make side effects even worse.

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Change Of Diet For Diarrhea In Dogs

Other components of treatment may include a bland prescription diet, a high-calorie diet, or a hypoallergenic diet.

When dealing with diarrhea, the answers can be easy all the way up until they aren’t!

Ultimately, its important to always loop in your veterinarian when you are concerned about your pet’s illness. Remember that our pets can’t talk to us to tell us how bad they feel. When in doubt, always consult your veterinarian.


Should Antibiotics Be Taken With Or Without Food

See the label on your antibiotics. Does it advise you to take them on an empty stomach or with food? Either way, you should follow the instructions given. Some antibiotics are better consumed on an empty stomach find out the optimal way to consume yours.

Regular recommendations for treating diarrhea still apply:

  • Drink a lot of water to prevent dehydration and use rehydrating beverages high in electrolytes if necessary.
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine if they are making diarrhea worse. Keep in mind that alcohol may cause severe reactions while you are taking certain antibiotics. See the label for that information.
  • Eat more of a bland diet than you might normally eat.

Common sense should keep you from disrupting the natural balance of antibiotics. Keep in mind that anything that triggers GI symptoms could make your side effects even worse.

Be cautious to avoid these undesirable side effects.

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