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The meaning of «amoxicillin»

Amoxicillin is an antibiotic used to treat a number of bacterial infections.[3] These include middle ear infection, strep throat, pneumonia, skin infections, and urinary tract infections among others.[3] It is taken by mouth, or less commonly by injection.[3][4]

Common adverse effects include nausea and rash.[3] It may also increase the risk of yeast infections and, when used in combination with clavulanic acid, diarrhea.[5] It should not be used in those who are allergic to penicillin.[3] While usable in those with kidney problems, the dose may need to be decreased.[3] Its use in pregnancy and breastfeeding does not appear to be harmful.[3] Amoxicillin is in the beta-lactam family of antibiotics.[3]

Amoxicillin was discovered in 1958 and came into medical use in 1972.[6][7] It is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines.[8] It is one of the most commonly prescribed antibiotics in children.[9] Amoxicillin is available as a generic medication.[3] In 2018, it was the seventeenth most commonly prescribed medication in the United States, with more than 31 million prescriptions.[10][11]

Amoxicillin is used in the treatment of a number of infections, including acute otitis media, streptococcal pharyngitis, pneumonia, skin infections, urinary tract infections, Salmonella infections, Lyme disease, and chlamydia infections.[3][12]

Children with acute otitis media who are younger than 6 months of age are generally treated with amoxicillin or other antibiotics. Although most children with acute otitis media who are older than two years old do not benefit from treatment with amoxicillin or other antibiotics, such treatment may be helpful in children younger than two years old with acute otitis media that is bilateral or accompanied by ear drainage.[13] In the past, amoxicillin was dosed three times daily when used to treat acute otitis media, which resulted in missed doses in routine ambulatory practice. There is now evidence that two times daily dosing or once daily dosing has similar effectiveness.[14]

Amoxicillin and amoxicillin-clavulanate have been recommended by guidelines as the drug of choice for bacterial sinusitis and other respiratory infections.[12] Most sinusitis infections are caused by viruses, for which amoxicillin and amoxicillin-clavulanate are ineffective,[15] and the small benefit gained by amoxicillin may be overridden by the adverse effects.[16] Amoxicillin is recommended as the preferred first-line treatment for community-acquired pneumonia in adults by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, either alone (mild to moderate severity disease) or in combination with a macrolide.[17] The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends amoxicillin as first-line treatment for pneumonia that is not "severe".[18] Amoxicillin is used in post-exposure inhalation of anthrax to prevent disease progression and for prophylaxis.[12]

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