Healthcare provider explaining what moxifloxacin is used for

What Is Moxifloxacin Used For?

Written on July 29, 2023 by Lori Mulligan, MPH. To give you technically accurate, evidence-based information, content published on the Everlywell blog is reviewed by credentialed professionals with expertise in medical and bioscience fields.

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Moxifloxacin is used to treat bacterial infections in many different parts of the body (including some sexually transmitted infections). It is also used to treat and prevent plague (including pneumonic and septicemic plague).

Moxifloxacin belongs to the class of medicines known as quinolone antibiotics. It works by killing bacteria or preventing their growth. However, this medicine only works on bacterial infections—it will not work for colds, flu, or other virus infections.[1]

How Should This Medicine Be Used?

Moxifloxacin comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken with or without food once a day for 5 to 21 days. The length of treatment depends on the type of infection being treated. Your healthcare provider will tell you how long to take moxifloxacin.

Your healthcare provider will also tell you how to take moxifloxacin and will encourage you to reach out in the event you experience any serious side effects. It is important for you to advocate for yourself and ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist to explain any part of the treatment plan you do not understand.

You should begin to feel better during the first few days of treatment with moxifloxacin. If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your healthcare provider.

It is very important to take moxifloxacin until you finish the prescription, even if you feel better.

Be mindful that if you take moxifloxacin too soon or if you skip doses, your infection may not be completely treated, and the bacteria may become resistant to antibiotics.

What Are Other Uses for This Medicine?

Moxifloxacin is also sometimes used to treat tuberculosis (TB), certain sexually transmitted diseases, and endocarditis (infection of the heart lining and valves) when other medications cannot be used.

Moxifloxacin also may be used to treat or prevent anthrax in people who may have been exposed if other medications are not available for this purpose.

Moxifloxacin is sometimes used to treat salmonella and shigella (infections that cause severe diarrhea) in patients who have human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection.[2] Additionally, moxifloxacin is also used in some cases for treating Mycoplasma genitalium, which is a kind of sexually transmitted infection (STI).

Private STD consultations

What Are Some Things I Need To Know or Do While I Take This Drug?

Be sure to tell all of your healthcare providers that you take this drug, including your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.

Driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert should be avoided until you see how this drug affects you. Also, have your blood work and other lab tests checked as you have been told by your provider.

High and low blood sugar has happened with drugs like moxifloxacin. Most of the time, low blood sugar happens in people with diabetes who are also taking other drugs that lower blood sugar, like insulin. Very low blood sugar can potentially lead to coma and sometimes death. Check blood sugar as you have been told by your provider.

Tell your provider if you have signs of high or low blood sugar, such as breath that smells like fruit, dizziness, fast breathing, fast heartbeat, feeling confused, feeling sleepy, feeling weak, flushing, headache, unusual thirst or hunger, passing urine more often, shaking, or sweating.

You may get sunburned more easily while using moxifloxacin. Avoid sun, sunlamps, and tanning beds. Use sunscreen and wear clothing and eyewear that protects you from the sun.

Drink lots of non-caffeine liquids unless told to drink less liquid by your provider.

Rarely, very bad and sometimes deadly effects have happened with moxifloxacin. These include muscle or joint, kidney, liver, blood, and other problems. Talk with your healthcare provider if you have questions.

Call your provider right away if you have signs of liver problems like dark urine, tiredness, decreased appetite, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.

A type of abnormal heartbeat (prolonged QT interval) can happen with moxifloxacin. Call your clinician right away if you have a fast heartbeat, a heartbeat that does not feel normal, or if you pass out.

This drug is not approved for use in children. The risk of some joint and tendon problems may be higher in children. However, your child’s provider may decide the benefits of taking this drug may outweigh the risks. Talk with the doctor if you have questions about giving this drug to your child.

If you are over the age of 60, use Moxifloxacin with care. You could have more side effects.

Tell your healthcare provider if you are pregnant, plan on getting pregnant, or are breastfeeding. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks to you and the baby.[3]

What Are the Common Side Effects of Moxifloxacin?

In addition to the severe adverse events mentioned above, there are some common side effects to be mindful of while taking this drug. Those include:

  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Nervousness
  • Agitation
  • Nightmares

The majority of people who use this medicine don’t show any side effects. Get medical help immediately if you get any serious moxifloxacin side effects.[4]

How Can Everlywell Help?

Everlywell offers access to online STD treatment through telehealth where professional clinicians are available to hear and assess your STI concerns.

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  1. Moxifloxacin (Oral Route). Mayo Clinic. Accessed on July18, 2023.
  2. Moxifloxacin. MedLine Plus. National Library of Medicine. Accessed on July 18, 2023
  3. Moxifloxacin. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. https://www Accessed on July 18, 2023.
  4. What is Moxifloxacin. Medicoverhospitals. Accessed on July 18, 2023.
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