Ampicillin belongs to a class of antibiotics called penicillin that are used for treating bacterial infections. Other members of this class include amoxicillin (Amoxil), piperacillin (Pipracil), ticarcillin (Ticar).

Ampicillin (originally branded as ‘Penbritin’) also demonstrated activity against Gram-negative organisms such as H. influenzae, coliforms and Proteus spp. Ampicillin was the first of a number of so-called broad spectrum penicillins subsequently introduced by Beecham.

The medicine is Ampicillin is used for treating infections of the middle ear, sinuses, stomach and intestines, bladder, and kidney caused by susceptible bacteria. It also is used for treating uncomplicated gonorrhea, meningitis, endocarditis and other serious infections.

It is available in the following forms and strengths, all of which are taken orally:

  • 250-mg capsule
  • 500-mg capsule
  • 50-mg/mL liquid suspension

It is also available as a clear liquid given by vein (IV).

Measures to Consume and Store Ampicillin

  • You should take ampicillin on an empty stomach, 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals.
  • Shake the liquid suspension well before you take it. Use
  • A medicine cup or oral syringe to measure your dose to be sure you are taking the correct amount of medicine.
  • Store the liquid suspension in the refrigerator.
  • Store the capsules at room temperature in a dry place.
  • Discard the liquid suspension after 14 days or when the expiration date on the label tells you to do so.

Possible Side Effects

Possible side effects of this medicine are as follows:

  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headache
  • Stomach pain
  • Allergic reaction with the following symptoms: rash, hives, itching, chills, fever, shortness of breath, muscle aches, swelling of face or neck, tightness in throat, or cough.