Cipro side effects?

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Hello. 9 days ago I started showing symptoms of UTI and I went to the doctor's 2 days later. I wss prescribed ciprofloxacin 250mg (4 tablets in total, 1 every 12 hours). After the second tablet i started experiencing joint pain and stiffness, muscle pain and mild cramping. It wasn't very severe and i wanted to cure my infection, so i completed the course of cipro. It's been 3 days since i stopped taking the drug and im still experiencing muscle and joint problems. There has been no improvement and im getting worried. My UTI seems to have been dealt with. I'll be 20 by the end of the month but I feel like an old person. Is it possible for the side effects to go away or has the drug caused long term damage to my body? Aside from lacking the habit of exercising regularly, I am an otherwise healthy 20 year old. I have to travel back to the country where i study next week and have live on my own. I dont think I'll be able to look after myself properly if im still having these side effects and i am really worried.

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  • Posted

    Hi Ruby,

    It's such a pity that you didn't post here as soon as you started getting pains and stiffness.  The symptoms will go away - but maybe not for a long time.  You have youth on your side which is a good thing, but please take this seriously.  Take magnesium supplements, also Vit D3, get some Epsom salts to bathe in to relieve the pains. 

    Never take any more Cipro or any other Fluoroquinolone (there are about 5 in the family).  Never take an NSAID such as Ibuprofen, never take a steroid, both of these can exacerbate the symptoms.

    Don't try to exercise the pain away - you may make things worse.  Go to this link on this site for more information and useful addresses - have a look at the discussions too, to get an idea of what you're dealing with.

    If you're in the UK report these symptoms to the MHRA (in the US it's the FDA) - a search will tell you how to do it.

    Keep in touch here to let me know how you're getting on.  Also say where you are and which country you're going to. maybe I can find info to help you.


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    • Posted

      Hi Miriam,

      Thank you so much for your reply. I went to see another doctor today, one that I went to often when I was a child to ask for some guidance. I know that most doctors do not recognise the harm Fluoroquinolone can cause, and as I expected, the doctor I went to see dismissed my concerns about side effects. I noticed that some symptoms of my UTI came back again, probably due to the very short course of antibiotics that I was given (not a good thing for my UTI but definitely a good thing for my general health). The doctor prescribed 5 days of Augmentin 375mg for me, taken 3 times everyday. I would be very happy if I can clear my UTI, but I'm wary of antibiotics now. Is it safe to take it after taking cipro? How safe is Augmentin?

      I couldn't get my hands on any supplements yet. Although I found a pack of almonds, pumpkin seeds and dried fruit...I read that they are sources of magnesium. It's probably not enough, but I guess it'll have to do for now. 

      I stopped taking the NSAID that I was gvien once I started doing research, so I only had them when I was taking the first 2 cipro tablets...enough to do some damage, I guess. 

      I don't really want to move around too much since the pain started, but I have to take care of my mum as she has spine issues which severly affects her mobility. I also had to take public transport and such when I went out to run errands and go to the doctor's. I do have a feeling that I might be straining my joints, tendons and muscles. They often feel painful once I stop moving. Sharp, stinging pain happens breifly when I walk for a bit too long. I don't really have a choice though, there are things that I have to do. I'm really worried that tendon injuries will happen. 

      I'm currently in Hong Kong, and I'll be going to the UK. Tomorrow I will visit a Chinese medicine doctor to see if he can help me. I have used chinese herbal medicine to eliminate period pains so I do believe that it works. I have read that some people turned to herbal medicine for their fluoroquinolone problems, so I guess it wouldn't hurt to try. 

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  • Posted

    Dear Ruby

    You need to start taking MAGNESIUM Vit B12 Milk thistle to help your body get it out of your system. Drink plenty of flitered water God only knows why your GP gave you this drug for a UTI. If you give your body the help it needs now you hopefully will be ok . There are strong cipro tablets that people have taken IE 500 mg so dont eat meat other than organic as this has FQ in it, Check out floxie hope ,com.

    The only advice i can give is to keep the joints that are stiff well massaged and take supplements as this drug dissolves connective tissue.

    Here is my number if you want to chat 07946 260439 UK

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    • Posted

      i forgot to mention you need to take a good probiotic so it will populate your gut with the friendly bacteria it needs that was destroyed by the cipro


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  • Posted

    Hi Ruby, I have no idea if a Chinese Herbalist would be able to help you  - he first has to understand what has happened to your body i.e. that your collagen is breaking down and other things are happening because the Cipro has damaged your mitochondria (the 'powerhouses of each cell).  As Gillian says, you need to replace magnesium and vit D3 is important too.  Also a good probiotic such as Yaccult drink - or even live natural yoghurt if you can get it in Hong Kong. These will be a good start.  You need something that will help and not cause further damage (like the NSAIDS do).

    When you get to the Uk you can find all these things easily - but do try to be careful of straining your muscles too much - it sounds like you're having a very difficult time.

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