I was given Trimethoprim tablets for a urinary infection...

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I was given Trimethoprim tablets for a urinary infection, and then two days (4 doses) later my doctor changed them to CEFALEXIN following the results of a urinary test.

After the second dose, I began to feel even more ill than I already did, and was extremly nauseous, and actually vomited. It got worse and after the fifth dose I absolutely could not continue with them. Unfortunately it was a Sunday, so I hd to wait until the surgery opened on Monday to put this side effect to my doctor. At the time of writing I still haven't spoken to him.

The Trimethoprim was beginning to clear up the infection, and by the time of the second dose of Cefalexin, my urine looks clear and much healhier, so it has certainly done the trick, but it was such a horrible side effect (I've ended up losing 6lbs as could not eat, either!) that I think it's worth considering this before prescribing.

[i:20762a04bc]This message was automatically imported from the original Patient Experience[/i:20762a04bc]

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  • Posted

    Well be thankful your GP did change you to cefalexin.

    I was on Trimethoprim for a urinary infection and I started to feel a little better on it but it didn't clear. I took the full 5 day course and the symptoms were still there but a tiny bit better. On the evening of of my last dose of Trimethoprim, I developed mid back pain and the next morning it was worse and I had a high fever. I had to go to hospital and the doctor there said Trimethoprim often doesn't work and the infection was now spreading towards my kidneys. I had to have an iv drip of gentamicin and was sent home with a 7 day course of cefalexin to take too.

    If I'd had the cefalexin first it would not have come to that.

    So at least it got changed before your infection worsened.

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  • Posted


    I too have just had a course of 5 days on Trimethoprim tablets feeling no better went back to the doctors today & they have changed them to a 5 day course of Cefalexin 1 - 250mg tablet four times a day.

    My symptoms are lower back pain stomach ache and feeling tired, hair dull etc....

    will report back in a few days to see if things have improved!

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  • Posted

    I had cystitis for about a week but didn't know what it was so eventually dragged myself to the doctors and they put me on trimethroprim tablets, 2 a day for 3 days and this really eased the pain and beared no side effects but didnt fully clear the infection up, I still always felt a little bit of pain but just got on with it and thought it would eventually clear up but it came back with a bite just over a week later and was worse than the first time round.

    Unfortunately it was 5am on a saturday mornin and i was crippled with pain and had to rush to the emergency docs, thankfully they put me on a 5-day course of cefalexin, 3 x 500mg tablets a day and they seem to be clearing up the infection but I have got a really really upset tummy, its contantly rumbling and will not settle and now and again get the odd sharp pain and get very sharp pains when i cough too. It also makes me dizzy and feel very nausious but hopefully it will be worth it in the end and i wont get anymore cystitus!

    i dont know if anyone reading this has had cystitus before but its HORRIBLE!!! and DOES NOT clear up unless you get the tablets!

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  • Posted

    Have had kidney/bladder infections for about 30 years. Was on Trimethroptim on and off for years. They kept it under control. New doc thought I'd been on them long enough and they were discontinued. Flare ups recurred and he prescribed Flucloxacillin which did the trick. Consultant has prescribed a 50mg.maintenance dose of Nitrofurantoin which hasn't worked. Last night I started with a really bad infection (forgot just how bad the pain is!!!) and had to call emergency doc this morning. He's prescribed Cefalexin(500mg 3 times a day) Just taken first one and am off to bed with hot water bottle. Interesting to read all your comments as I don't think I've been prescribed it before and it sounds like it works!!!!! Hurrah.
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  • Posted

    I too was given trimethroptine for a uti then had them changed at the last minute by the doctor after receiving the urine test back, I was given cefalexin and boy they do make you tired, and like another reader I also feel like i've just given berth again from the pain in my lower back and legs. It is comforting to know that there are others out there experiencing the same...
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  • Posted

    Urinary Tract Infections are very common in women. It is basic anatomy unfortunately.

    When urine sample is 'dipped' by health professional, it will show up if infection is present. It does NOT however, show the bacteria causing infection.

    Medical guidelines are, unless pregnant or allergic, Trimethoprim 200mg twice a day for 5 or 7 days. (correct me if I am wrong please!)

    The urine sample is then sent to laboratory for M C and S.

    M - micro-organism (bacteria/germ/bug) causing the infection

    C = culture, which means a few cells are grown in the laboratory in controlled environment

    S = sensitivity. That is, the lab can check what the bacteria/germ/bug is sensitive to, (what kills it!) and also what it is resistant to (what doesnt kill it!).

    When the Doctor or health professional gets the results from laboratory, they will be able to accurately check if Trimethoprim is the correct antibiotic for you.

    Sometimes Cefalexin or Nitrofurantoin are prescribed instead. There is also a newer antibitiotic recently on the scene, cant remember what it is called though.

    Always make sure that you read the leaflet. Especially how and when to take the medication.

    Sometimes just taking it with or before food as prescribed, can prevent the horrible side effect of nausea and eggy taste in mouth.

    Sorry to ramble. But I see so many urine infections DAILY and a lot of us dont have time to explain this to our patients.

    Increase fluid intake a LOT... water preferably. Take pain relief - again READ THE PATIENT INFORMATION LEAFLET!

    And, finally and most important for women, wipe backside from front towards the rear after a bowel movement (after a poo!).

    Bacteria can transfer into the urinary system no matter how clean you are and female anatomy lends itself to ease of transfer. sad

    Pass urine before and after sex and dont use perfumed soaps on your 'bits'.

    If your symptoms persist after three or four days of antibiotic therapy, go back to doctor. You may need a different antibiotic.

    Also, get another urine speciment check 3 - 5 days AFTER finishing the antibiotic to ensure the bug has actually gone.

    Hope this helps and please, feel free to correct me!

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    • Posted

      Hi ,and many thanks for your input and helpful info on this dire problem.I`ve suffered from cystitis and UTI s for many years.Some have been infections ,some not,I`ve had investigations and when i was found to have fibroids ,medical specialists suggested THIS was agravating my issues.However ,even after a hysterectomy the problem continued.I was then diagnosed with fibromyalgia and DDD and irritable bladder.

      I`m frequently presc ribed trimethoprim(200mg 2xday ,for only 3 days).Yes they make me feel dreadful ,extremely nauseated ,but do often help to start clearing my infection up and easing the symptoms.

      My problem is as they begin to clear ,i then finnish the 3 day course ,and the following day ,bamm!Symptoms are back with a vengance.

      I`m certain if given a longer doseage to take (or yes ,even something diferent) ,this would clear it up completely.

      Having met a new partner i found starting an intimate relationshup was what was giving me so many "bouts" of cystitis/UTI s.

      I`m exceptionally clean (I have chronic OCD) ,always wipe front to back.Pass water before and after sex.What else could you recommend>Like so many others here ,this is making my daily life intolerable ,and sex is starting to be something id rather skip (sad as we get along so well in every way)...I`d be so grateful if you can help.Many thanks

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    • Posted

      Hi Sarah

      Just come across this, not sure if you still need help, but here goes...

      What you seem to be experiencing is 'honeymoon cystitis'. I see you've had some advice, as you pass water after intercourse. That helps to flush bacteria from your urethra - usually e.coli - which can be spread from the perineum during sex. But there are other causes of honeymoon cystitis too.

      Inflammation caused during intercourse can encourage bacterial growth. This occurs if theres even slightly inadequate lubrication. A water-based lube may help.

      Inadequate lubrication can be a side-effect of menopause, as the body's oestrogen levels drop. Your GP can prescribe a cream which would help.

      Some contraceptives can also cause problems - spermicidal gel can be harsh, plus diaphragms can harbour bacteria.

      Some medical conditions can also cause this. Diabetes, for instance. Also, fungal infections such as thrush can play havoc with your bladder. As thrush is a side-effect of many antibiotics, I wonder if this is what causes your symptoms after antibiotic therapy.

      You may be right regarding a longer course of antibiotics - next time you have to see your GP for a UTI, ask if it's possible to have a longer course, and explain why as you have here.

      Dehydration, or holding on too long before you go for a wee, causes concentrated urine to sit in the bladder for an extended period, allowing bacterial overgrowth, which could cause your symptoms. Try to drink 8 glasses of water a day and wee when you need to!

      Some people find daily cranberry juice helps. Also, keeping some cystitis relief sachets such as Cystopurin in your medicine cabinet may help, for when you feel that first burn.

      Finally...I noticed you mentioned OCD. As a fellow sufferer, I wonder if you perhaps do as I used to - use soap to cleanse your intimate areas? This can disrupt the pH balance of that area, making it an ideal environment for bacterial and fungal infections. Try one of the washes on the market. They are specifically developed for that reason and aren't just a gimmick.

      If all else fails, your GP can refer you to a urologist, who can carry out investigations to find out why you suffer like this.

      Hope this helps!

      NB. I am a retired nurse, however this is not a substitute for proper medical advice.

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    • Posted

      There is another point to this.....Some bacteria can hide and depending on how the culture was carried out and often can give false positive results.....I think this is very dangerous for patents and most sufferers know that giving the wrong Antibiotic can cause a more resistant bacterium.....I know cultures take time but I do think Drs should consider patents when the say they still don't feel right during this culturing process.....I have been  given Trimethoprim there times over a three week period because each time I finished a weeks course a locum Dr puts me on more as my Dr is away I'm dreading when I finish this lot as it has affected my kidneys.....and do not thing this is going to help......They lost my Urine test and now tell me as I have been on antibiotics the bacterium may not show up on another culture......I wonder why Trimethoprim is commonly used when it's clear it's not one of the best broad spectrum Antibiotics to use in a urgent situation.....Trimethoprim has also been linked  to causing kidney problems and has stated this when looking up Trimethoprim on line.....It also states this is mentioned in the Drs Desk reference manual ......

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  • Posted

    I have had UTI's on and off for many years and have taken numerous courses of antibiotics... The most effective one I have found is Doxycyclin which, despite always being told by my GP is unsuitable for UTI'S works like a dream! Better still, to avoid getting the infection in the first place take D-Mannose, available from health food shops, I haven't needed antibiotics for over two years since discovering this... even if you take them at the first tingle of the infection it still stops it but better to take it all the time if you are very susceptable..

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  • Posted

    I have had a uti since end march. have had 8 lots of antibiltics so far, among them, cefalexin twice,

    trimethroprim, ciprofloxacin as well as others. As soon as I stop taking the tablets the infection comes back.

    I have today been given a 2week course of nitrofurantoin 100mg so am keeping fingers crossed that these will work

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  • Posted

    Hi, I'm on trimethoprim right now in my second day of a 3 day course. It's 2:30 am and im literally sitting in my bathroom almost crying in pain as it seems to have gotten worse. I've missed my whole first week of isixth form because of this stupid uti! Can anyone tell me what to do, please? I'm in the worst pain I've ever experienced
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  • Posted

    Hello I've had infections on an off for a few years and like the post 2 above as soon as I finish antibiotics it's back so iv got to have a systoscopy end of the month to look at my bladder not looking forward to it any one had one x
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  • Posted

    HI everyone, I tried to treat myself initially with cystisis cranberry solution _ cystoporum for 48 hrs but the symtoms persisted. I have reddish urine and talked to my GP and then he prescribed Trimethoprim. I finished my 3 day antibiotic course- trimethoprim. I think i'm not feeling well 100% yet. I still feel a little bit pain in my abdomen and right back hip. It's not painful anymore when i urinate but i do experience pain- in my abdomen and right back part of my hip. I do feel tired too and don't have appetite to eat. Ive been drinking cranberry juice to hopefully get better . So i'll see today and if i feel worse , I'll call the doctor for a different antibiotic?
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