Cefpodoxime

By Rania Gollakner, BS, DVM

Medications

What is cefpodoxime?

Cefpodoxime (brand names Simplicef® and Vantin®) is a third-generation cephalosporin antibiotic used to treat skin infections in dogs. The bacteria that are susceptible to cefpodoxime include certain Staphylococcus and Pasteurella species, Streptococcus canis, E. coli, and certain bacteria causing urinary tract infections.

The use of cefpodoxime in cats is off label or extra-label and is also off-label for the treatment of urinary tract infections in dogs. Many drugs are commonly prescribed for off label use in veterinary medicine. In these instances, follow your veterinarian’s directions and cautions very carefully.

How is cefpodoxime given?

liquid_medication_bottle_shaking_2018-01Cefpodoxime is available as a tablet and as an oral suspension.

Cefpodoxime should be given by mouth with or without food. If your pet vomits after receiving the drug on an empty stomach, try giving the next dose with food. If vomiting continues, contact your veterinarian.

It is important to give this antibiotic for as long as your veterinarian has prescribed it for, even if your pet appears to be feeling better. Do not stop giving the medication to your pet without first speaking with your veterinarian.

Liquid forms must be shaken well before use and carefully measured.

What if I miss giving my pet the medication?

If you miss a dose, give it when you remember, but if it is close to the time for the next dose, skip the dose you missed and give the medication at the next scheduled time and continue with the regular dosing schedule. Never give your pet two doses at once or give extra doses.

Are there any potential side effects?

There are very few side effects of cefpodoxime. The most commonly reported side effects are vomiting, decreased appetite, and diarrhea. If these effects worsen, become severe, or continue, contact your veterinarian.

In cats, a complete loss of appetite can occur. This is a serious side effect. If your cat stops eating, contact your veterinarian immediately as serious liver problems (hepatic lipidosis) can result.

Hypersensitivities or allergic reactions are rare, but possible. Contact your veterinarian if you suspect an allergic reaction.

Are there any risk factors for this medication?

Cefpodoxime should not be used in pets that are allergic to it or other cephalosporins. It should be used with caution in patients with kidney disease and those that have a history of seizures.

This medication should only be used during pregnancy if necessary and should be used with caution in nursing animals.

Are there any drug interactions I should be aware of?

Some medications interact with cefpodoxime and decrease the absorption of it. Other drugs may interact with cefpodoxime, so it is important to tell your veterinarian about any medications (including vitamins, supplements, or herbal therapies) that your pet is taking.

Is there any monitoring that needs to be done with this medication?

Monitor to ensure that the medication is working and for any adverse effects.

How do I store cefpodoxime?

Cefpodoxime tablets should be stored in a tightly sealed container, protected from light, and stored at temperatures between 68°F and 77°F (20-25°C).

Liquid suspensions must be stored in the refrigerator between 35°F and 45°F (2°C- 8°C).

What should I do in case of emergency?

Most overdoses of cefpodoxime cause diarrhea, vomiting, lack of appetite, and lethargy; however, some overdoses of cefpodoxime can be serious. If you suspect an overdose and your pet is experiencing an adverse reaction, call your veterinary office immediately. If they are not available, follow their directions in contacting an emergency facility.

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