1 What is Amoclan?

Brand: Amoclan, Augmentin, Augmentin ES-600, Augmentin XR

Generic: Clavulanate or Clavulanic acid

Amoclan is categorized into broad spectrum penicillins. Clavulanate or clavulanic acid has a higher affinity and binds to certain lactamases that generally inactivate amoxicillin by hydrolyzing its lactam ring.

It has rapid oral absorption and a bioavailability of 60%. Its elimination and tissue distribution matches amoxicillin, with which it is combined (called coamoxiclav).

Combining clavulanate potassium with amoxicillin extends the antibacterial spectrum of amoxicillin to include many bacteria normally resistant to amoxicillin and other penicillins and cephalosporins.

Many physicians now prefer it over ampicillin for bronchitis, urinary infections, SABE and gonorrhea. It is also a component of most triple drug H. pylori eradication regimens.

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2 What To Know Before Using

Before using Amoclan, you must know all about the risks and complications associated with it.As oral absorption is better, food does not interfere with absorption of this drug combination.

Additionally, higher and more sustained blood levels are produced with a lower incidence of diarrhea. Those who have penicillin allergy should not use this drug.

Hypersensitivity reactions may occur with any dosage form of penicillin. Allergy to one penicillin exposes the patient to a greater risk of a reaction if another is given.

Clinical and immunological studies suggest that immediate allergic reactions to penicillin are mediated by skin-sensitizing or IgE antibodies.

Following skin test is recommended for detection of penicillin allergy:

  • Here, the skin is scratched through a drop of a solution of benzylpenicillin.
  • This is left for at least 15 minutes.
  • If there is a wheel (due to local edema), then it is taken as a positive test i.e. patient is sensitive to penicillin (penicillin allergy).
  • If the test is negative, an intradermal test with 0.02 ml of a solution of 100 units/ml should also be done. If these tests are negative, penicillin may be administered cautiously.

3 Proper Usage

Proper usage of Amoclan requires strict adherence to your doctor’s orders. The addition of clavulanic acid re-establishes the activity of amoxicillin against beta-lactamase producing resistant Staph. aureus, H. influenzae, N. gonorrhoeae, E. coli, Proteus, Klebsiella, Salmonella and Shigella.

Though Bact. fragilis and Branhamella catarrhalis are not responsive to amoxicillin alone, they are inhibited by the combination i.e. coamoxiclav.

It is more active against penicillin resistant Strep. pneumoniae but it is less active against Shigella and H. influenzae.

Clavulanic acid does not potentiate the action of amoxicillin against strains that are already sensitive to it.

This drug is highly recommended for the following medical conditions:

  • Skin and soft tissue infections
  • Intra-abdominal and gynecological sepsis
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Enteric fever (typhoid and paratyphoid fever)
  • Meningitis due to H. influenzae, meningococci, and pneumococci
  • In the case of gonorrhea, a single dose of amoxicillin (3 gm) plus clavulanic acid (0.5 g) plus probenecid (1g) is highly curative
  • Especially when empiric antibiotic therapy is to be given for hospital-acquired infections
  • Respiratory tract infections (RTI) – sinusitis, otitis, tonsillitis, bronchitis etc
  • Prophylactic uses in syphilis, tetanus, gas gangrene, infective endocarditis. Here, dose schedule is recommended as 250-500 mg 3 times daily.

4 Precautions To Take

Before using Amoclan, there are some precautions you must take. It is better to always remain ready to face any undesired effects after taking any drug.

Some important measures should be taken if you feel any discomfort after administration of such medication into your eye. Firstly, you have to stop using this drug and then consult with your physician immediately. You should take this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor.

Never try to increase either the frequency of drug administration or the dosage of the drug. It will make you more prone to infections.

History of allergy, especially to cephalosporins, infectious mononucleosis & severe renal impairment, are the conditions when this drug is used with great care.

You should not take any other medicine during this drug therapy. It is safe to consult with your doctor if you are in need of some drugs for another health problem.

5 Potential Side Effects

As with many medications, there are some potential side effects associated with Amoclan. 

Sometimes, you may need to consult with the doctor if you feel any of the following problems: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, indigestion, rash & urticaria, candida superinfection, hypersensitivity etc.

Usual side effects need no medical attention but in some conditions may demand emergency resolution. Especially in the case of children, the symptoms related with gastrointestinal tract may become more significant because of poorer tolerance.

Candida stomatitis or vaginitis has been reported in immune-compromised patients. Some cases of hepatic injury have been reported with the combination.

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