Meds and you

27 September 2013


Lincomycin is a broad-spectrum antibiotic effective in treating a variety of bacterial infections as well as certain skin soft tissue, bone and joint infection.


Lincomycin is the active ingredient of Lincocin (Nappi Code: 738174-009 & 738182-001/028).

General information
Lincomycin is a broad-spectrum antibiotic effective in treating a variety of bacterial infections including infections of the respiratory tract, abdominal cavity, as well as certain skin, soft tissue, bone and joint infection.

It is important to note that this medication is only effective against bacterial infections - if your infection is the result of a viral or fungal infection, it will be ineffective.

Antibiotic resistance occurs when a bacterium develops the ability to defend itself against the effect of an antibiotic. It may also occur with lincomycin. The most common causes for resistance are patients not completing prescribed antibiotic courses allowing the bacteria to recover from treatment, and the use of antibiotics for non-bacterial infections, such as cold and flu.

Lincomycin is best taken with a full glass of water on an empty stomach one hour before or two hours after a meal, unless otherwise directed by your doctor.

How does lincomycin work?
Lincomycin functions by inhibiting bacterial protein synthesis. It prevents bacteria from producing specific proteins essential for their survival.

Fast facts

Drug schedule: schedule 4
Available as: lincomycin is available as capsules and as an injection
What does it do? Lincomycin has an antibiotic action
Overdose risk: low
Dependence risk: low
Is lincomycin available as a generic? yes
Is lincomycin available on prescription only? yes

User information

Onset of effect: within 6 hours
Duration of action: up to 12 hours
Stopping this medicine: do not stop using lincomycin before you have completed the course prescribed by your doctor, even if you begin to feel better.
Prolonged use: lincomycin is generally used for short periods of time only. In rare cases it is used for prolonged periods of time - this may be associated with increased side effects and your prescriber should monitor you closely.

Special precautions
Consult your doctor before using this drug if:

  • you have liver or kidney disease

  • you have colitis, Crohn's disease, or any other intestinal disorder

  • you have asthma

  • you are taking other medication

Pregnancy: avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your baby. Consult your doctor before using this drug, or if you are planning to fall pregnant.
Breastfeeding: avoid. This medication is passed through breast milk and may affect your baby adversely. Consult your doctor before use.
Porphyria: avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your condition. Consult your doctor before use.
Infants and children: this medication is safe for use in children at the recommended dose.
The elderly: no special precautions need to be taken.
Driving and hazardous work: no special precautions need to be taken.
Alcohol: avoid concomitant use of alcohol with this medication.

Possible side effects

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Side Effect

Consult your doctor

Only if severe
In all cases







abdominal pain


sore/irritated throat




yellow tinge to eyes/skin




bloody diarrhoea


swelling of lips/throat/tongue



kaolin & pectin mixtures should be taken 2 hours before or after antibiotic to prevent a decrease in antibiotic absorption
suxamethonium risk of respiratory depression
oral contraception possible pill failure

Overdose action
A small overdose is no cause for concern. In case of intentional large overdose, seek emergency medical attention.

Recommended dosage
Adults: Oral, 500 mg 3-4 times daily; IM, Up to 1.2 g daily in 2 divided doses

This material is not intended to substitute medical advice, but is for informational purposes only. Please consult a physician for specific treatment and recommendations.

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