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Clindamycin (Clindamycin Hydrochloride) - Summary


Boxed Warning Section

Clostridium difficile

associated diarrhea (CDAD) has been reported with use of nearly all antibacterial agents, including clindamycin hydrochloride and may range in severity from mild diarrhea to fatal colitis. Treatment with antibacterial agents alters the normal flora of the colon, leading to overgrowth of

C. difficile


Because clindamycin hydrochloride therapy has been asso­ciated with severe colitis which may end fatally, it should be reserved for serious infec­tions where less toxic antimicrobial agents are inappropriate, as described in the


section. It should not be used in patients with nonbacterial infections such as most upper respiratory tract infections. 


C. difficile

produces toxins A and B, which contribute to the development of CDAD.  Hypertoxin producing strains of

C. difficile

cause increased morbidity and mortality, as these infections can be refractory to antimicrobial therapy and may require colectomy. CDAD must be considered in all patients who present with diarrhea following antibiotic use. Careful medical history is necessary since CDAD has been reported to occur over two months after the administration of antibacterial agents.


If CDAD is suspected or confirmed, ongoing antibiotic use not directed against

C. difficile

may need to be discontinued. Appropriate fluid and electrolyte management, protein supplementation, antibiotic treatment of

C. difficile

, and surgical evaluation should be instituted as clinically indicated.




Clindamycin hydrochloride is the hydrated hydrochlo­ride salt of clindamycin. Clindamycin is a semisynthetic antibiotic produced by a 7(S)-chloro-substitution of the 7(R)-hydroxyl group of the parent compound lincomycin.

Clindamycin hydrochloride capsules, USP are indicated in the treatment of serious infections caused by susceptible anaerobic bacteria.


Clindamycin hydrochloride capsules, USP are also indicated in the treatment of seri­ous infections due to susceptible strains of streptococci, pneumococci, and staphylococci. Its use should be reserved for penicillin-allergic patients or other patients for whom, in the judgment of the physician, a penicillin is inappropriate. Because of the risk of colitis, as described in the


box, before selecting clindamycin, the physician should consider the nature of the infection and the suitability of less toxic alternatives (e.g., erythromycin).



Serious respiratory tract infections such as empyema, anaerobic pneumonitis, and lung abscess; serious skin and soft tissue infections; septicemia; intra-abdominal infections such as peritonitis and intra-abdominal abscess (typically resulting from anaerobic organisms resident in the normal gastroin­testinal tract); infections of the female pelvis and geni­tal tract such as endometritis, nongonococcal tubo-ovarian abscess, pelvic cellulitis, and postsurgical vaginal cuff infection.



Serious respiratory tract infections; seri­ous skin and soft tissue infections.



Serious respiratory tract infections; serious skin and soft tissue infections.



Serious respiratory tract infections.


Bacteriologic studies should be performed to deter­mine the causative organisms and their susceptibility to clindamycin.


To reduce the development of drug-resistant bacteria and maintain the effectiveness of clindamycin hydrochloride and other antibacterial drugs, clindamycin hydrochloride should be used only to treat or prevent infections that are proven or strongly suspected to be caused by susceptible bacte­ria. When culture and susceptibility information are available, they should be considered in selecting or modifying antibacterial therapy. In the absence of such data, local epidemiology and susceptibility patterns may contribute to the empiric selection of therapy.


See all Clindamycin indications & dosage >>


Published Studies Related to Clindamycin

Clindamycin versus trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole for uncomplicated skin infections. [2015]
community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is unclear... CONCLUSIONS: We found no significant difference between clindamycin and TMP-SMX,

Efficacy of clindamycin in reducing pain following tonsillectomy in adults: a double-blind, randomised trial. [2013]
reducing throat pain after tonsillectomy in adult patients... CONCLUSION: Topical clindamycin was not demonstrated to be more effective than

Topical 4% nicotinamide vs. 1% clindamycin in moderate inflammatory acne vulgaris. [2013]
Nicotinamide and clindamycin gels are two popular topical medications for acne vulgaris... Skin type is a significant factor in choosing between topical nicotinamide and clindamycin in patients with acne vulgaris.

Fitzpatrick skin types and clindamycin phosphate 1.2%/benzoyl peroxide gel: efficacy and tolerability of treatment in moderate to severe acne. [2012]
efficacy of acne medications in skin of color... CONCLUSIONS: Acne subjects with Fitzpatrick skin types IV-VI were not found to be

Treatment of moderate to severe acne vulgaris in a Hispanic population: a post-hoc analysis of efficacy and tolerability of clindamycin phosphate 1.2%/benzoyl peroxide 2.5% gel. [2012]
in Hispanics... CONCLUSIONS: Overall efficacy and tolerability with clindamycin phosphate

more studies >>

Reports of Suspected Clindamycin Side Effects

Diarrhoea (42)Rash (24)Pyrexia (23)Completed Suicide (20)Toxicity TO Various Agents (20)Pancytopenia (17)Gastrooesophageal Reflux Disease (16)Chest Pain (15)Vomiting (15)Drug Hypersensitivity (15)more >>


Based on a total of 8 ratings/reviews, Clindamycin has an overall score of 3.12. The effectiveness score is 6.50 and the side effect score is 4.50. The scores are on ten point scale: 10 - best, 1 - worst. Below are selected reviews: the highest, the median and the lowest rated.

Clindamycin review by 21 year old female patient

Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   Staph Infection
Dosage & duration:   150mg taken four times a day for the period of 7 days
Other conditions:   Asthma, allergies, eczema, GERD
Other drugs taken:   Reactine, Pantaloc, Advair
Reported Results
Benefits:   My staph infection on my neck and legs started to clear up pretty quickly... within the 2nd day i noticed a huge difference.
Side effects:   i was scared to death to take this medication after i read what other people wrote about this drug... however.. for me it was not that bad... the first 2 doses I had some headaches/dizziness... I think I was just getting used to the drug... it is pretty strong... no stomach issues until day 5 out of 7... a bit of abdominal pain..but nothing major... id rather get rid of the itchy staph infection and suffer with the minor side effects.
Comments:   Taking the drug and putting on topical mupurocin.


Clindamycin review by 45 year old female patient

Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Ineffective
Side effects:   Moderate Side Effects
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   prophylaxis after oral surgery
Dosage & duration:   300 mg. taken 3 times per day for the period of 7 days
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
Reported Results
Benefits:   I really don't know if there are any, since I'm taking it prophylactically.
Side effects:   For the first 2 or 3 days I was hungry all the time, I think I've gained weight. I'm on day 5, and now I feel bloated and full, have a little heartburn, food doesn't taste right, and bad taste in mouth. When I belch or pass gas it smells terrible. I wouldn't call it diarrhea, but I'm going more often, and it's just weird. I'll finish the drug, but I don't think I'd take it again.
Comments:   Taking it to prevent infection after dental implant surgery.


Clindamycin review by 44 year old male patient

Overall rating:  
Effectiveness:   Considerably Effective
Side effects:   Extremely Severe Side Effects
Treatment Info
Condition / reason:   STAPHF INFECTION
Dosage & duration:   1 pill taken 4 times a day for the period of 14 days
Other conditions:   none
Other drugs taken:   none
Reported Results
Benefits:   infection cleared up in a week
Side effects:   30 days after finishing the meds i had severe abdominal pains, and was then diagnosed with diverticulitis[hemroids of the colon i was unable to work for 3 and a half months it is now 6 years later and im about to have part of my colon removed due to inflamation of the diverticulitis , the last 6 years have been a living hell from pain to constipation and diareia i hope this works as the drug changed my life from very heathy to very sick and on my death bed twice once from anafalactic shock to the most recent,an abbsessed liver which im still dealing with so i can have my operation and see if i can get rid of the constant pain i,v been in for 6 years. I WOULD NOT WISH THIS ON MY WORST ENEMY
Comments:   4 times a day for 14 days the pain

See all Clindamycin reviews / ratings >>

Page last updated: 2015-08-10

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