What Is Flovin (Cipro)?
Flovin is the generic form of the brand-name antibiotic Cipro.
Doctors prescribe Flovin to treat or prevent infections caused by various bacteria that are sensitive to Flovin.
The drug works by preventing bacteria from reproducing. Flovin belongs to a family of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Flovin in 1987 for Bayer Healthcare under the brand name Cipro.
In 2004, the FDA approved generic Flovin for several drug manufacturers.
Today, companies also sell Flovin under the brand names Cipro XR Extended-Release Tablets and Proquin XR Extended-Release Tablets.
Doctors prescribe Flovin to treat infections caused by many different species of bacteria, including:
Common infections treated with Flovin include:
Flovin won't work against infections caused by viruses (such as colds and the flu), so your doctor will prescribe Flovin only if it's very likely that you have a bacterial infection.
That's because using antibiotics like Flovin against viruses or other illnesses they can't treat increases the chance that in time they will no longer work against bacterial infections either.
Known as drug resistance, this growing worldwide threat develops because bacteria can adapt, making antibiotics less effective or not effective at all.
These multi-drug-resistant bacteria, or "superbugs," can spread through direct contact, or indirectly in food or water.
In 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that a surge in gonorrhea rates in 17 American cities between 1991 and 2006 might have been due to Flovin resistance.
The CDC noted that roughly 820,000 gonorrhea cases develop in the United States each year and that antibiotic-resistant bacteria could affect treatment and control efforts for this sexually transmitted infection.
Flovin (Cipro) is more effective than amoxicillin-clavulanate (Augmentin) as a treatment for bladder infections in women, even when the microbe is susceptible to the latter drug, according to a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Currently, the standard treatment for bladder infections or cystitis is trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim), but emerging resistance to this agent has led to greater use of “fluoroquinolone” drugs, such as Flovin. In an effort to maintain the usefulness of this drug class, however, there has been a push to use non-fluoroquinolone antibiotics.
Despite increasing use of amoxicillin-clavulanate for cystitis, few studies have assessed the effectiveness of this treatment, according to Dr. Thomas M. Hooton of Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, and colleagues.
To investigate, the researchers assessed cure rates in 370 women with cystitis who were randomly selected to receive a 3-day course of Flovin or amoxicillin-clavulanate.
Cure was achieved in 77 percent of Flovin-treated women compared with just 58 percent of amoxicillin-clavulanate-treated women. Moreover, even when the analysis was confined to women infected with bacteria susceptible to amoxicillin-clavulanate, Flovin still provided a higher cure rate.
The authors believe that Flovin may have worked better than amoxicillin-clavulanate because of eradication of E. coli bacteria in the vagina. At 2-week follow-up, 45 percent of women treated with amoxicillin-clavulanate had vaginal E. coli compared with just 10 percent of women treated with Flovin.
The results, the investigators conclude, suggest that amoxicillin-clavulanate should only be considered as a treatment for cystitis when “use of other first- and second-line antibiotics is not feasible.”
SOURCE: Journal of the American Medical Association, February 23, 2005.
What are the possible side effects of Flovin?
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning in your eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash that spreads and causes blistering and peeling).
Flovin can cause serious side effects, including tendon problems, side effects on your nerves (which may cause permanent nerve damage), serious mood or behavior changes (after just one dose), or low blood sugar (which can lead to coma).
Stop taking this medicine and call your doctor at once if you have:
- low blood sugar--headache, hunger, sweating, irritability, dizziness, nausea, fast heart rate, or feeling anxious or shaky;
- nerve symptoms in your hands, arms, legs, or feet--numbness, weakness, tingling, burning pain;
- serious mood or behavior changes--nervousness, confusion, agitation, paranoia, hallucinations, memory problems, trouble concentrating, thoughts of suicide; or
- signs of tendon rupture--sudden pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness, stiffness, movement problems, or a snapping or popping sound in any of your joints (rest the joint until you receive medical care or instructions).
In rare cases, Flovin may cause damage to your aorta, the main blood artery of the body. This could lead to dangerous bleeding or death. Get emergency medical help if you have severe and constant pain in your chest, stomach, or back.
Also, stop using Flovin and call your doctor at once if you have:
- severe stomach pain, diarrhea that is watery or bloody;
- fast or pounding heartbeats, fluttering in your chest, shortness of breath, and sudden dizziness (like you might pass out);
- the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild;
- muscle weakness, breathing problems;
- little or no urination;
- jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
- increased pressure inside the skull--severe headaches, ringing in your ears, dizziness, nausea, vision problems, pain behind your eyes.
Common side effects may include:
- nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain;
- vaginal itching or discharge;
- headache; or
- abnormal liver function tests.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
By Chris Iliades, MD | Medically Reviewed by Farrokh Sohrabi, MD
Latest Update: 2014-07-30 Copyright © 2014 Everyday Health Media, LLC
Rated Flovin (Cipro) for Sinusitis Report
21 yr old female. This was prescribed by the Urgent Care since I'm allergic to Amoxicillin. First day was okay no issues besides light stomach pain, second day the inner corners of my knees and elbows became sore/swollen (maybe 2-3/10 pain not too bad but uncomfortable), third day the soreness moved to my neck (Pain now on 4-5/10 scale). On the 4th day now and I'm scared to keep taking the drug. I called the Urgent Care to simply ask for a change in medicine but with the side effects I'm experiencing they actually told me to go to the ER because Cipro can cause tendonitis and even tendon rupture. I'm a broke 21 yr old so I am not going to the ER, but I sure as hell will never let anyone prescribe me this drug ever again. I'd say if you have no symptoms I'm glad this drug works for you, but if you experience anything like muscle/joint pain to stop taking the drug and ask for something else/go to a different doctor.
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How should this medicine be used?
Flovin comes as a tablet, a suspension (liquid), and an extended-release tablet to take by mouth with or without food. The tablets and suspension are usually taken twice a day, and the extended-release tablets are usually taken once a day. When used to treat gonorrhea, the tablets and suspension may be given as a single dose. Take Flovin at around the same time(s) every day. The length of your treatment depends on the type of infection you have. Your doctor will tell you how long to take Flovin. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take Flovin exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
One type of Flovin cannot be substituted for another. Be sure that you receive only the type of Flovin that was prescribed by your doctor. Ask your pharmacist if you have any questions about the type of Flovin you were given.
Do not take Flovin with dairy products or calcium-fortified juices alone. However, you may take Flovin with a meal that includes these foods or drinks.
Swallow the tablets and extended-release tablets whole; do not split, crush, or chew them. If you cannot swallow tablets whole, tell your doctor.
If you are taking the suspension, shake the bottle very well for 15 seconds before each use to mix the medication evenly. Swallow the correct dose without chewing the granules in the suspension. Close the bottle completely after each use. Do not give the suspension to a patient through a feeding tube.
You should begin feeling better during the first few days of your treatment with Flovin. If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your doctor. If you are being treated for a urinary tract infection, call your doctor if you develop fever or back pain during or after your treatment. These symptoms may be signs that your infection is worsening.
Take Flovin until you finish the prescription, even if you feel better. Do not stop taking Flovin without talking to your doctor unless you experience certain serious side effects listed in the IMPORTANT WARNING and SIDE EFFECTS sections If you stop taking Flovin too soon or if you skip doses, your infection may not be completely treated and the bacteria may become resistant to antibiotics.