Why is this medication prescribed?
Sulfadiazine, a sulfa drug, eliminates bacteria that cause infections, especially urinary tract infections. Antibiotics will not work for colds, flu, or other viral infections.
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
How should this medicine be used?
Sulfadiazine comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken three to six times a day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take sulfadiazine exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
The tablets should be taken with a full glass of water.
Continue to take sulfadiazine even if you feel well. Do not stop taking sulfadiazine without talking to your doctor.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking sulfadiazine,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to sulfadiazine, any other sulfa drugs, diuretic ('water pills'), oral diabetes medications, or any other drugs.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially anticoagulants ('blood thinners') such as warfarin (Coumadin), diabetes medications, diuretics ('water pills'), and vitamins.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had liver or kidney disease, asthma, severe allergies, or glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G-6PD) deficiency (an inherited blood disease).
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking sulfadiazine, call your doctor.
- plan to avoid unnecessary or prolonged exposure to sunlight and to wear protective clothing, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Sulfadiazine may make your skin sensitive to sunlight.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Sulfadiazine may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- upset stomach
- loss of appetite
If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- rash or skin changes
- sore throat
- joint or muscle aches
- yellowing of the skin or eyes
- swelling of the lips or tongue
- swallowing problems
- blood in urine
- difficulty breathing
- unusual bleeding or bruising
- ringing in ears
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Your prescription is probably not refillable.
If you still have symptoms of an infection after you finish sulfadiazine, call your doctor.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.