Quinolone Antibiotics are a class of drugs that help in treating and preventing infections caused by bacteria. These drugs work by destroying and killing bacteria that cause the infections. These bactericidal antibacterial agents offer a broad-spectrum activity in treating patients with infections. Quinolone drugs inhibit the enzyme that helps in replication of microorganisms. They prevent the DNA of bacteria from unwinding and duplicating. Most of the quinolones used for clinical purposes are found in the subset of drugs called fluoroquinolones.
Quinolone Antibiotics Drugs
Drugs that are a part of the Quinolone Antibiotics drug class include:
- norfloxacin (Quinabic, Janacin, Noroxin, Lexinor)
- lomefloxacin (Maxaquin)
- ofloxacin (Oxaldin, Tarivid, Floxin)
- gatifloxacin (Avelox)
- ciprofloxacin (Cipro I.V., Cipro, Proquin XR, Cipro XR)
- levofloxacin (Levaquin)
- gemifloxacin (Factive)
- cinoxacin (Cinobac)
- trovafloxacin (Trovan)
- sitafloxacin (Gracevit)
- Gemifloxacin (Factive)
Quinolone Antibiotics Uses
Quinolones are used in the treatment of bacterial infections, tract infections, sinus infections, skin infections, upper respiratory infections, typhoid, and pneumonia. Fluoroquinolones are a type of quinolone drugs used in treating pneumonia. They are used in treating mainly hospital-acquired pneumonia.
In the case of community-acquired pneumonia, other medications may be used such as doxycycline. Nonetheless, if other antibiotics have been used but failed in treating community-acquired pneumonia, then fluoroquinolones may be prescribed. Because quinolones are broad-spectrum synthetic antibacterial drugs, there have been issues of resistance to the drugs by bacteria. Their use should thus be done cautiously. The side effects are also a concern, and proper prescription is needed.
Besides, these drugs are used to treat genitourinary infections. In sickle cell patients who are at risk of suffering from osteomyelitis caused by Salmonella, the fluoroquinolones may be administered because they can enter bone tissue while not chelating it. Moreover, ciprofloxacin, another type of quinolones are used in treating severe traveler’s diarrhea, acute pyelonephritis, and severe cases of gonorrhea and salmonellosis.
Quinolone Antibiotics Side Effects
Before being prescribed of these drugs, patients should be informed of their side effects so that they remain vigilant and seek medical help when they notice the effects. Patients are advised to increase their fluid intake during the time they are under prescription of such drugs so that they reduce risk of suffering from crystalluria or crystals found in urine. Common or less severe side effects include:
- Central nervous system issues
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Abdominal pain
Rare side effects include:
- QT interval prolongation
- Tendon rupture
- Disruption of glucose metabolism
Quinolone Antibiotics Interactions
Products, that contain multivalent cations including antacids containing aluminum and magnesium, or other products containing iron, calcium, and zinc, may result in reduced absorption of fluoroquinolones. Drugs like warfarin, theophylline, probenecid, cimetidine, sucralfate, phenytoin, cycloserine, and antiviral agents may also interact with fluoroquinolones.
Sucralfate interferes with the oral absorption of fluoroquinolones by decreasing the bioavailability of the drug by close to 98 percent especially when taken 2 hours after the administration of the antibiotic. With proper timing in administration of the drugs, it can help reduce interactions.