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Antibiotics After Kidney Transplant

Hi Everybody! Everyone in my house has been sick the past month with respiratory infections and ear infections. I have so far been able to keep myself healthy. However, I am 14 months post kidney transplant and was wondering if I do come down with something, what antibiotics are safe (in general) for us post transplant? My transplant team usually does not prescribe anything until there is a fever of 101.  I am thinking of going to my GP and want to be able to advise what is safe. 

My daughter was not placed on an antibiotic and told a cold runs 1-2 weeks. However, she just got worse and now has ear infections. I believe in early use of antibiotics regardless of hearing they are not effective for viruses. I am a Nurse Practitioner and this is just my humble opinion. lol  

Could you let me know your experiences and what antibiotics you have been placed on safely?

Thank you and God Bless. Hugs


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  • Thanks everyone. I have come down with a respiratory infection and stomach bug.  We are snowed in and my transplant center suggested I see my local GP, as it is a 2 1/2 hr ride there in good weather.  He prescribed Keflex. I will call tomorrow to make sure that is ok. Has anyone taken Keflex post tx? I’m a nervous Nellie still regarding my transplant if you haven’t noticed. lol 

    • I am a liver transplant patient and have taken Keflex.  My primary care doctor beleives in antibiotics for transplant patients to reduce the risk of a secondary infection.  I am very lucky in the past 10+ years I have only had to take antibiotics five times.  Due to the reduced immune system, one infection took 21 days of antibiotics.  My transplant center told me that the only antibiotic they do not want me to take is Erythromycin.



    • I have, I’m close to four years out from my donor kidney transplant.  They give you a lower dose.  I’ve not had any issues with it at all.  Took the Generic of Keflex...cephlexin.  Kate

  • Hi,

    I was told never take antibiotics when not needed, your body will get immune resistant so when you do need them they don't work, I'm post Transplant kidney just 2 months and aquired a UTI, they couldn't give me an antibiotic until culture came back to show what I had to treat, I was under the impression you never give antibiotics for the common cold, Bacteria and Virus are treated very different.

    Just wear a mask, wash hands and use hand sanitizer I also carry in addition to what I mentioned travel size Lysol spray in my purse and use in public restrooms. This is what I do, Flu season doesn't peak until April

    Stay Healthy and Safe

  • I found it crazy that I did not get "normal sick" (cold/flu/etc) for quite a while after TX.

    I did have a Zithromax for Bronchitis which I have had everyother year during flu season my whole life before TX.  I did wait a little longer than I should have to seek care.  Based on your profession you know prevention is key.  I have been juiced up of so many IV antibiotics just in my hospital time (which was lengthly) alone, and get seen the minute I see sputum that illustrates infection.  My experience has been nothing other than that they have eliminated the current acute threats just like a normal person.  Feeling good is tough enough with all the meds and changes - illness really can hit very hard.  Recovery is so much tougher for us in general.  Multiply how you feel with the flu  by a few times and that is what a cold can be for some TX patients

    Forgot - yes Vanco and all the big hitters have been tolerated as well as I did have CMV.  

  • Hi Chris,

    Antibiotics do not work on viruses and you are best served by constant hand washing and limiting exposure.  Antibiotics rev up the immune system to seek out "invaders through the bloodstream.  This is why Tx teams use antibiotics stringently.  Short-term use can be well tolerated, however lengthy use exposes you to the danger that an immune reaction will start on your Tx. You should speak to the Tx team when/if symptoms begin so that the correct antibiotic can be prescribed (some work better than others with different ailments,) and to be sure you are not allergic to them.  I have tolerated most Penicillin and even some stronger types like Cipro and Vancomycin in short duration.

    • Hi Kidneyboy,

      You are very lucky to be able to take all the good antibiotics they had to do extra planning for me before transplant for I'm allegic to, penicillin, sulfa, Cipro, keflex, erythromycin, and amoxicillin, I pray I never get a catastrophic infection or I could be doomed.

      Stay Healthy :)

      • I am fairly certain that erythromycin is a no-no with transplant.  Kate F

        • Hi Kate,

          I can't take it any way..I'm allergic to it, in addition to 5 others, all the one's that are used for major infection's, it's really a bad place to be I just hope I never get a serious infection.

          • Well, we must all pray for no infections for you.  I can’t easily take very many either, so I totally understand your worry.  K

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