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What the Yuck: Can I drink on antibiotics?
February 12th, 2012
08:57 AM ET

What the Yuck: Can I drink on antibiotics?

Too embarrassed to ask your doctor about sex, body quirks, or the latest celeb health fad? In a regular feature and a new book, "What the Yuck?!," Health magazine medical editor Dr. Roshini Raj tackles your most personal and provocative questions. Send 'em to Dr. Raj at whattheyuck@health.com.

Q: Is it bad to drink alcohol if I’m on antibiotics?

A: You shouldn’t drink at all while on certain antibiotics - like Flagyl (metronidazole), Tindamax (tinidazole), or Bactrim or Septra (trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole) - because you can get unpleasant side effects like nausea and headaches.

Otherwise, a glass of wine probably won’t hurt, though you might experience worse potential side effects (upset stomach, dizziness, drowsiness) than usual from the drug and the alcohol.

If you’re sick enough to need antibiotics, however, I’d say skip happy hour and give your body time to fight the infection.

Copyright Health Magazine 2011


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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.