Moxifloxacin for infection (Avelox)

Take one tablet a day, and complete the full course of treatment.

Do not take indigestion remedies, or supplements containing iron or zinc, either during the two hours before or during the two hours after you take moxifloxacin.

Do not take painkillers called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, while you are on moxifloxacin.
Type of medicineA quinolone antibiotic
Used forBacterial infections in adults
Also calledAvelox®
Available asTablets and injection

Moxifloxacin is an antibacterial medicine. This means that it stops infections caused by germs (bacteria). It works by killing the germs that are causing the infection.

Moxifloxacin is prescribed to treat bacterial infections such as bronchitis, pneumonia, sinusitis, and pelvic inflammatory disease. It is only used for infections which have not improved with other antibiotic treatment, or when other antibiotics cannot be prescribed in preference to it.

Some medicines are not suitable for people with certain conditions, and sometimes a medicine can only be used if extra care is taken. For these reasons, before you start taking moxifloxacin it is important that your doctor knows:

  • If you are under 18 years of age or over 60 years of age.
  • If you are pregnant, trying for a baby, or breast-feeding.
  • If you have ever experienced tendon problems after taking another quinolone antibiotic (ofloxacin, levofloxacin, ciprofloxacin, nalidixic acid, or norfloxacin).
  • If you have ever been told you have an unusual heartbeat.
  • If you have a heart condition (such as heart failure), or if you have recently had a heart attack.
  • If you have been told you have a salt imbalance in your blood.
  • If you have problems with the way your liver works.
  • If you have epilepsy or any other condition that causes fits.
  • If you have a condition causing tired and weak muscles, called myasthenia gravis.
  • If you know you have glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency. This is an inherited genetic disorder which causes problems after eating foods such as fava beans.
  • If you are taking any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, as well as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a medicine.
  • Before you start the treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from inside your pack. It will give you more information about moxifloxacin, and it will also provide you with a full list of the side-effects which you could experience from taking it.
  • Take moxifloxacin exactly as your doctor tells you to. You will be prescribed a dose of one tablet a day. Try to take the tablets at the same time of day each day, as this will help you to remember to take moxifloxacin regularly.
  • Swallow the tablet whole with a drink of water. Do not chew or break the tablets, as they have a bitter taste. You can take moxifloxacin either with or without food.
  • Do not take indigestion remedies, or medicines containing iron or zinc, either during the two hours before you take moxifloxacin, or during the two hours after you have taken a dose. This is because these interfere with the way moxifloxacin is absorbed by your body and stop it from working fully.
  • Even if you feel your infection has cleared up, keep taking the tablets until the course is finished (unless you are told to stop sooner by a doctor). This is to prevent the infection from coming back. A course of treatment often lasts for around 1-2 weeks, although it could be for up to three weeks. If you still feel unwell after finishing the course, go back to see your doctor for more advice.
  • If you forget to take a dose at your usual time, take it as soon as you remember. If you do not remember until the following day then take the dose that is due and leave out the forgotten one. Do not take two doses together to make up for a forgotten dose.
  • If you buy any medicines, check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with moxifloxacin. You should not take painkillers called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (such as ibuprofen) while you are being treated with moxifloxacin.
  • Moxifloxacin can cause your skin to become more sensitive to sunlight than normal. Avoid strong sunlight and sunbeds, and use a sun cream with a high sun protection factor even on bright but cloudy days until you know how your skin reacts.
  • Some people develop thrush (redness and itchiness in the mouth or vagina) after taking a course of an antibiotic. If this happens to you, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
  • This antibiotic can stop the oral typhoid vaccine from working. If you are due to have any vaccinations, make sure the person treating you knows that you are taking this medicine.

Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. The table below contains some of the common ones associated with moxifloxacin. The best place to find a full list of the side-effects which can be associated with your medicine, is from the manufacturer's printed information leaflet supplied with the medicine. Alternatively, you can find an example of a manufacturer's information leaflet in the reference section below. Speak with your doctor or pharmacist if any of the following continue or become troublesome.

Common moxifloxacin side-effects (these affect less than 1 in 10 people)What can I do if I experience this?
Feeling sick or being sick (vomiting), and tummy (abdominal) painStick to simple foods - avoid fatty or spicy meals
DiarrhoeaDrink plenty of water to replace lost fluids. If the diarrhoea is severe or continues to be a problem, speak with your pharmacist or doctor
Oral and/or vaginal thrushSpeak with your pharmacist or doctor for advice on treatment
HeadacheDrink plenty of water and ask your pharmacist to recommend a suitable painkiller. If the headache continues, speak with your doctor
Feeling dizzy or faintDo not drive and do not use tools or machines while affected

Important: there are also a number of less common but more serious side-effects which have been associated with moxifloxacin. Stop taking the tablets and speak with your doctor straightaway if you experience any of the following:

  • An allergic-type reaction, such as swelling around your face or mouth, a skin rash, or any difficulty breathing.
  • Pain or inflammation in your muscles, tendons or joints (possible tendinopathy).
  • Any feelings of pain, burning, tingling, numbness or weakness.
  • Any signs of jaundice, such as yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.

If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to the tablets, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for further advice.

  • Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.

Never take more than the prescribed dose. If you suspect that you or someone else might have taken an overdose of this medicine, go to the accident and emergency department of your local hospital. Take the container with you, even if it is empty.

This medicine is for you. Never give it to other people even if their condition appears to be the same as yours.

If you are having an operation or any dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are taking.

Do not keep out-of-date or unwanted medicines. Take them to your local pharmacy which will dispose of them for you.

If you have any questions about this medicine ask your pharmacist.

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Author:
Helen Allen
Peer Reviewer:
Dr John Cox
Document ID:
4132 (v30)
Last Checked:
19 December 2016
Next Review:
19 December 2019

Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Patient Platform Limited has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.