Amoxicillin, Clavulanate (Clavamox, Augmentin)

Amoxicillin, Clavulanate

(Clavamox, Augmentin)
By Dr. Karen Burgess

Brand name and formulations

  • Amoxicillin (generic)
  • Amoxi/clavulanate-Augmentin (human formula), Clavamox (animal formula), and generic
  • Tablets, Capsules, and Liquid

What is amoxicillin?
Amoxicillin is an antibiotic in the penicillin family. Amoxi/clavulanate is created by combining amoxicillin with clavulanic acid which expands the spectrum of bacteria treated. Both of these are considered good choices for general infections of uncertain origin.

How is amoxicillin given and what if a dose is missed?
Amoxicillin is typically prescribed for twice daily dosing. If a dose is missed and it is less than 12 hours late, go ahead and give missed dose. If it is within 12 hours of the next dose, skip a dose and resume regular schedule with next dose. It may be helpful to give on a full stomach.

How should amoxicillin be stored?
Tablets of amoxi/clavulanate are sensitive to moisture and should be protected from humidity. The liquid formula should be refrigerated. If amoxicillin/clavulanate is left out of the refrigerator overnight it should still be good; if longer then discard. The liquid version should be discarded after 10 days.

What is amoxicillin’s background?
Penicillin was developed in the late 1800’s and became popular in 1943 when it was used during World War II. There are several limitations with penicillin including its poor absorption from the intestine and short acting nature. In response amoxicillin and amoxicillin/clavulanate which are synthetic penicillins were developed to address these shortcomings.

What side effects are associated with amoxicillin?
Both drugs can cause upset stomach, loss of appetite and nausea. Giving on a full stomach may help with these signs.

What drugs should not be given with amoxicillin?
There are no specific drug interactions.

What follow up is necessary with amoxicillin use?
Medication should be used for some time after signs of illness or disease are gone. Notify us if a refill is necessary.