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Clindamycin (Cleocin, Clinda-Derm, Clindagel, Clindets, Pledgets, Dalacin, Evoclin, Benzaclin) is an antibiotic used to treat the respiratory tract, abdomen, skin, pelvis, vagina, bones and joints, and is available by injection, capsule, foam, gel, or oral solution. It can also be used to treat malaria and some methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections. Clindamycin phosphate is also available in a combination drug in topical cream form (Duac) used to treat acne. Cleocin is manufactured by Pfizer.
Despite the efficacy of clindamycin treatment of a multitude of infectious conditions, serious potential adverse effects in the use of the medication have been identified. Among the more severe of its more common adverse effects is Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea that can lead to pseudomembranous colitis. Pseudomembranous colitis is a serious condition that can progress to toxic megacolon, which can result in perforation of the colon, invasion of the bloodstream by virulent bacteria, and even death.
Other potential side effects of clindamycin include:
More rarely (in less than 1 percent of cases), use of clindamycin can result in:
- Anaphylaxis — a rapidly progressing, life-threatening allergic reaction in which the immune system responds to otherwise harmless substances
- Blood dyscrasias — any of a number of blood diseases/disorders
- Polyarthritis — inflammation of several joints simultaneously
- Jaundice — yellow staining of the skin and the whites of the eyes due to abnormally high blood levels of bile
- Hepatotoxicity and/or raised liver enzyme levels
Clindamycin has been making headlines in China recently following the death of eight people who had received clindamycin phosphate glucose injections. On August 4, 2006, The Health Ministry of China issued a nationwide ban on the drug pending an investigation into the procedures followed at the Anhui Huayuan Worldbest Biology Pharmacy Co., where the drug was produced.
If you or a loved one has suffered adverse effects as a result of using clindamycin, a review of your case by a qualified pharmaceutical attorney can determine if you may be entitled to compensation. Please be aware, however, that by law you have a limited time to act.