Why is this medication prescribed?
Metronidazole capsules and tablets are used to treat infections of the reproductive system, gastrointestinal (GI) tract, skin, heart, bone, joint, lung, blood, nervous system, and other areas of the body. Metronidazole capsules and tablets are also used to treat sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Metronidazole extended-release (long-acting) tablets are used to treat bacterial vaginosis (an infection caused by too much of certain types of harmful bacteria in the vagina) in women. Metronidazole is in a class of medications called nitroimidazole antimicrobials. It works by stopping the growth of bacteria.
Antibiotics will not work for colds, flu, or other viral infections. Using antibiotics when they are not needed increases your risk of getting an infection later that resists antibiotic treatment.
How should this medicine be used?
Metronidazole comes as a tablet, an extended-release tablet, and as a capsule to take by mouth. Metronidazole capsules and tablets are usually taken as a one-time dose (or divided into two doses on 1 day) or two to four times daily for up to 10 days or longer. Metronidazole extended-release tablets are usually taken once daily at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal for 7 days. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take metronidazole exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Swallow the extended-release tablets whole; do not split, chew, or crush them.
Continue to take this medication even if you feel well. Do not stop taking it without talking to your doctor. If you stop taking this medication too soon or skip doses, your infection may not be completely treated and the bacteria may become resistant to antibiotics.
Other uses for this medicine
Metronidazole tablets are used to treat bacterial vaginosis in women.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.