Bactrim DS is a prescription drug used for treating various types of bacterial infections. It works by inhibiting the production of folic acid in bacteria. You should talk to your healthcare provider before using it if you have certain health conditions or are taking any other medications, as Bactrim DS is not suitable for everyone. Possible side effects include rashes, nausea, and vomiting.
What Is Bactrim DS?
Bactrim® DS (sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim) is a prescription antibiotic approved to treat a variety of different infections. In addition to treating infections, it is approved to prevent one particular infection, Pneumocystis cariniipneumonia, in people with a weakened immune system.
The "DS" stands for "double strength." Bactrim DS contains exactly twice as much of the active ingredients as regular Bactrim. There are no other important differences between these two forms. Taking two regular Bactrim tablets is the same as taking one Bactrim DS tablet.
(Click Bactrim Uses for more information on what this medication is used for, including possible off-label uses.)
Who Makes It?
Brand-name Bactrim DS is manufactured by Mutual Pharmaceutical Company, Inc. and is marketed and distributed by AR Scientific. Generic versions are made by different manufacturers.
How Does It Work?
Bactrim DS contains two different antibiotic medications: sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim.
Combining these two antibiotics increases their effectiveness and decreases the chance of antibiotic resistance (when bacteria develop the ability to resist antibiotics).
Sulfamethoxazole belongs to a group of drugs known as sulfonamides ("sulfa" drugs). Trimethoprim does not belong to a specific class of medications. These two antibiotics work in different but similar ways. Essentially, both work by inhibiting the production of folic acid in bacteria, although they work in different stages of folic acid production. Folic acid is important for making proteins and DNA. Because humans obtain folic acid from the diet (and bacteria cannot), human cells are less affected by Bactrim DS.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Bactrim [package insert]. Philadelphia, PA: AR Scientific;2006 November.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: Approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed September 8, 2008.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 7th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2005.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed September 8, 2008.
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