Development of drug resistant bacteria Prescribing Bactrim (sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim) tablets in the absence of a proven or strongly suspected bacterial infection or a prophylactic indication is unlikely to provide benefit to the patient and increases the risk of the development of drug-resistant bacteria. Folate deficiency BACTRIM should be given with caution to patients with impaired renal or hepatic function, to those with possible folate deficiency (e.g., the elderly, chronic alcoholics, patients receiving anticonvulsant therapy, patients with malabsorption syndrome, and patients in malnutrition states) and to those with severe allergies or bronchial asthma. Hematological changes indicative of folic acid deficiency may occur in elderly patients or in patients with preexisting folic acid deficiency or kidney failure. These effects are reversible by folinic acid therapy. Hemolysis In glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficient individuals, hemolysis may occur. This reaction is frequently dose-related (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY and DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION). Hypoglycemia Cases of hypoglycemia in non-diabetic patients treated with BACTRIM are seen rarely, usually occurring after a few days of therapy. Patients with renal dysfunction, liver disease, malnutrition or those receiving high doses of BACTRIM are particularly at risk. Phenylalanine metabolism Trimethoprim has been noted to impair phenylalanine metabolism, but this is of no significance in phenylketonuric patients on appropriate dietary restriction. Porphyria and Hypothyroidism As with all drugs containing sulfonamides, caution is advisable in patients with porphyria or thyroid dysfunction. Use in the Treatment of and Prophylaxis for Pneumocystis jiroveci Pneumonia in Patients with Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS): AIDS patients may not tolerate or respond to BACTRIM in the same manner as non-AIDS patients. The incidence of side effects, particularly rash, fever, leukopenia and elevated aminotransferase (transaminase) values, with BACTRIM therapy in AIDS patients who are being treated for P. jiroveci pneumonia has been reported to be greatly increased compared with the incidence normally associated with the use of BACTRIM in non-AIDS patients. Adverse effects are generally less severe in patients receiving BACTRIM for prophylaxis. A history of mild intolerance to BACTRIM in AIDS patients does not appear to predict intolerance of subsequent secondary prophylaxis.7 However, if a patient develops skin rash or any sign of adverse reaction, therapy with BACTRIM should be reevaluated (see WARNINGS). Co-administration of BACTRIM and leucovorin should be avoided with P. jiroveci pneumonia (see WARNINGS). Electrolyte Abnormalities High dosage of trimethoprim, as used in patients with P. jiroveci pneumonia, induces a progressive but reversible increase of serum potassium concentrations in a substantial number of patients. Even treatment with recommended doses may cause hyperkalemia when trimethoprim is administered to patients with underlying disorders of potassium metabolism, with renal insufficiency, or if drugs known to induce hyperkalemia are given concomitantly. Close monitoring of serum potassium is warranted in these patients. Severe and symptomatic hyponatremia can occur in patients receiving BACTRIM, particularly for the treatment of P. jiroveci pneumonia. Evaluation for hyponatremia and appropriate correction is necessary in symptomatic patients to prevent life-threatening complications. During treatment, adequate fluid intake and urinary output should be ensured to prevent crystalluria. Patients who are “slow acetylators” may be more prone to idiosyncratic reactions to sulfonamides. Laboratory Tests Complete blood counts should be done frequently in patients receiving BACTRIM; if a significant reduction in the count of any formed blood element is noted, BACTRIM should be discontinued. Urinalyses with careful microscopic examination and renal function tests should be performed during therapy, particularly for those patients with impaired renal function. REFERENCES 7. Hardy DW, et al. A controlled trial of trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole or aerosolized pentamidine for secondary prophylaxis of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in patients with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. N Engl J Med. 1992; 327: 1842–1848. Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility Carcinogenesis Sulfamethoxazole was not carcinogenic when assessed in a 26-week tumorigenic mouse (Tg-rasH2) study at doses up to 400 mg/kg/day sulfamethoxazole; equivalent to 2.4-fold the human systemic exposure (at a daily dose of 800 mg sulfamethoxazole b.i.d.). Mutagenesis In vitro reverse mutation bacterial tests according to the standard protocol have not been performed with sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim in combination. An in vitro chromosomal aberration test in human lymphocytes with sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim was negative. In in vitro and in vivo tests in animal species, sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim did not damage chromosomes. In vivo micronucleus assays were positive following oral administration of sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim. Observations of leukocytes obtained from patients treated with sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim revealed no chromosomal abnormalities. Sulfamethoxazole alone was positive in an in vitro reverse mutation bacterial assay and in in vitro micronucleus assays using cultured human lymphocytes. Trimethoprim alone was negative in in vitro reverse mutation bacterial assays and in in vitro chromosomal aberration assays with Chinese Hamster ovary or lung cells with or without S9 activation. In in vitro Comet, micronucleus and chromosomal damage assays using cultured human lymphocytes, trimethoprim was positive. In mice following oral administration of trimethoprim, no DNA damage in Comet assays of liver, kidney, lung, spleen, or bone marrow was recorded. Impairment of Fertility No adverse effects on fertility or general reproductive performance were observed in rats given oral dosages as high as 350 mg/kg/day sulfamethoxazole plus 70 mg/kg/day trimethoprim, doses roughly two times the recommended human daily dose on a body surface area basis. Pregnancy While there are no large, well-controlled studies on the use of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim in pregnant women, Brumfitt and Pursell,10 in a retrospective study, reported the outcome of 186 pregnancies during which the mother received either placebo or sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim. The incidence of congenital abnormalities was 4.5% (3 of 66) in those who received placebo and 3.3% (4 of 120) in those receiving sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim. There were no abnormalities in the 10 children whose mothers received the drug during the first trimester. In a separate survey, Brumfitt and Pursell also found no congenital abnormalities in 35 children whose mothers had received oral sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim at the time of conception or shortly thereafter. Because sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim may interfere with folic acid metabolism, BACTRIM should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus. Teratogenic Effects - Pregnancy Category D Human Data While there are no large prospective, well controlled studies in pregnant women and their babies, some retrospective epidemiologic studies suggest an association between first trimester exposure to sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim with an increased risk of congenital malformations, particularly neural tube defects, cardiovascular abnormalities, urinary tract defects, oral clefts, and club foot. These studies, however, were limited by the small number of exposed cases and the lack of adjustment for multiple statistical comparisons and confounders. These studies are further limited by recall, selection, and information biases, and by limited generalizability of their findings. Lastly, outcome measures varied between studies, limiting cross-study comparisons. Alternatively, other epidemiologic studies did not detect statistically significant associations between sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim exposure and specific malformations. Animal Data In rats, oral doses of either 533 mg/kg sulfamethoxazole or 200 mg/kg trimethoprim produced teratologic effects manifested mainly as cleft palates. These doses are approximately 5 and 6 times the recommended human total daily dose on a body surface area basis. In two studies in rats, no teratology was observed when 512 mg/kg of sulfamethoxazole was used in combination with 128 mg/kg of trimethoprim. In some rabbit studies, an overall increase in fetal loss (dead and resorbed conceptuses) was associated with doses of trimethoprim 6 times the human therapeutic dose based on body surface area. Nonteratogenic Effects See CONTRAINDICATIONS section. Nursing Mothers Levels of trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole in breast milk are approximately 2– 5% of the recommended daily dose for infants over 2 months of age. Caution should be exercised when BACTRIM is administered to a nursing woman, especially when breastfeeding, jaundiced, ill, stressed, or premature infants because of the potential risk of bilirubin displacement and kernicterus. Pediatric Use BACTRIM is contraindicated for infants younger than 2 months of age (see INDICATIONS and CONTRAINDICATIONS sections). Geriatric Use Clinical studies of BACTRIM did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently from younger subjects. There may be an increased risk of severe adverse reactions in elderly patients, particularly when complicating conditions exist, e.g., impaired kidney and/or liver function, possible folate deficiency, or concomitant use of other drugs. Severe skin reactions, generalized bone marrow suppression (see WARNINGS and ADVERSE REACTIONS sections), a specific decrease in platelets (with or without purpura), and hyperkalemia are the most frequently reported severe adverse reactions in elderly patients. In those concurrently receiving certain diuretics, primarily thiazides, an increased incidence of thrombocytopenia with purpura has been reported. Increased digoxin blood levels can occur with concomitant BACTRIM therapy, especially in elderly patients. Serum digoxin levels should be monitored. Hematological changes indicative of folic acid deficiency may occur in elderly patients. These effects are reversible by folinic acid therapy. Appropriate dosage adjustments should be made for patients with impaired kidney function and duration of use should be as short as possible to minimize risks of undesired reactions (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION section). The trimethoprim component of BACTRIM may cause hyperkalemia when administered to patients with underlying disorders of potassium metabolism, with renal insufficiency or when given concomitantly with drugs known to induce hyperkalemia, such as angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors. Close monitoring of serum potassium is warranted in these patients. Discontinuation of BACTRIM treatment is recommended to help lower potassium serum levels. Bactrim Tablets contain 1.8 mg sodium (0.08 mEq) of sodium per tablet. Bactrim DS Tablets contain 3.6 mg (0.16 mEq) of sodium per tablet. Pharmacokinetics parameters for sulfamethoxazole were similar for geriatric subjects and younger adult subjects. The mean maximum serum trimethoprim concentration was higher and mean renal clearance of trimethoprim was lower in geriatric subjects compared with younger subjects (see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY: Geriatric Pharmacokinetics). REFERENCES 8. Marinella Mark A. 1999. Trimethoprim-induced hyperkalemia: An analysis of reported cases. Gerontol. 45:209–212. 9. Margassery, S. and B. Bastani. 2002. Life threatening hyperkalemia and acidosis secondary to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole treatment. J. Nephrol. 14:410–414. 10. Brumfitt W, Pursell R. Trimethoprim/Sulfamethoxazole in the Treatment of Bacteriuria in Women. J Infect Dis. Nov 1973; 128 (Suppl):S657–S663. Last reviewed on RxList: 7/30/2013
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.