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Drug Class: Commonly Known As: Category:
Antibiotic Adult, Children

Nitrofurantoin - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can Nitrofurantoin cause?

The common side effects of this medication include:

  • Nausea or vomiting, stomach pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Constipation or diarrhoea

Nitrofurantoin may also cause your urine to turn dark yellow or brown in colour.

The symptoms of a drug allergy include one or more of the following:

  • Swollen face/eyes/lips/tongue
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Itchy skin rashes over your whole body

Other rare but serious side effects include:

  • Difficulty breathing, fever, chills, chest pain and cough
  • Serious skin rash that looks red, swollen, blistered or peeling
  • Very sensitive to touch, sharp pain, numbness or having a tingling feeling in your feet or hands
  • Signs of liver injury, which may include dark coloured urine, light coloured stools, severe nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, stomach pain or yellowing of skin or eyes.

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should stop your medication and see your healthcare professional immediately.

Before taking Nitrofurantoin, what precautions must I follow?

Inform your healthcare professional if:

  • You are allergic to this medication or any of the other ingredients of this medication
  • You have Glucose-6-Phosphate-Dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency
  • You are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding
  • You have liver or kidney problems

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take Nitrofurantoin?

‚ÄčThis medication can affect the levels of other medications in your body. Do let your doctor know if you are taking other medications, including over-the-counter medications, vitamins and herbal products, before starting on this antibiotic.

Inform your doctor if you are taking magnesium trisilicate, a medication used for gastric discomfort.


  • Updated on Wednesday, March 31, 2021
  • Article contributed by PSS National Medication Information Workgroup PSS National Medication Information Workgroup

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