Keflex (Cephalexin) is an antibiotic from the cephalosporin family. It is classified as a first generation cephalosporin because it is one of the first cephalosporins developed. Today, cephalexin is produced and sold with the brand name Keflex by a reputable pharmaceutical company, Shionogi Inc.
What is Keflex used for?
Keflex is used for the treatment of infections whose causal agents are bacteria. Keflex acts by hampering the bacteria’s capability of making cell walls, which is of great importance for the survival of the bacteria cells, thereby resulting in their death. Cephalexin is administered to treat respiratory tract, middle ear, skin, bone and urinary tract infections, and also for the treatment of infections caused by streptococcal bacteria. However, Keflex and other antibiotics from the cephalosporin family are wide spectrum antibiotics, that is, they are used for treating a wide range of infections caused by different types of bacteria. Cephalexin is made handy both in tablet and liquid forms; known as suspension.
Keflex dosage depends on the nature of the infection and the class of the person taking it; that is, a child or an adult. Adult doses are available in 250mg and 500mg; 250mg is taken every 6hours and the 500mg is taken every 12hours. The usual dose for children is 25-50mg, depending on the weight of the child and it is administered at time intervals. Keflex capsules is available in 250, 333, 500 and 750mg options. Keflex treatment depends on the nature of the infection and the treatment can be doubled for severe infections; treatment also ranges between 7 to 14 days.
Allergic Reactions to Keflex
Signs and symptoms of allergic reactions to cephalexin include rashes on the skin, swelling under the skin, itching, swelling of the throat, difficulty in breathing. Its side-effects include vaginal discharge, headache, dizziness, aches, mouth sores and fatigue. Cephalexin should be discontinued and the doctor called upon if these signs occur; trouble breathing or swallowing, severe skin rash and sudden bleeding. It is advised that people with a history of liver, kidney or colon disease should inform their doctor of these conditions before taking cephalexin. Also, people allergic to penicillin should be tested because there’s a possibility of about 10% chance of being allergic to cephalexin.
Keflex antibiotics should not be overused because over using broad spectrum antibiotics leads to severe infections from drug-resistant bacteria. Keflex should not be taken with other antibiotics as it increases the risk of pseudomembranous colitis; like other antibiotics, cephalexin can result in an overgrowth of bacteria called clostridium difficile in the colon, this bacteria produces toxins and these toxins result in the condition, pseudomembranous colitis. In case of overdose, the nearest poison center should be contacted. Symptoms of overdose include nausea and vomiting, stomach pain, diarrhea, and blood in the urine. Keflex and alcohol together is not recommended because of the excess detoxification load the combination gives the liver.