Augmentin XR Uses

How Does Augmentin XR Work?

Augmentin XR contains two different medications: amoxicillin and clavulanate potassium (also known as clavulanic acid or simply clavulanate). Amoxicillin belongs to a group of drugs known as aminopenicillins, which is part of a larger group of medications known as beta-lactam antibiotics, named after the ringlike "lactam" structure of these antibiotics.
 
Amoxicillin works by stopping bacteria from making cell walls, which eventually causes the bacteria to die. However, many bacteria have developed resistance to amoxicillin and similar antibiotics by producing enzymes called beta-lactamases. Beta-lactamases (produced by bacteria) break the beta-lactam ring, making amoxicillin and similar antibiotics ineffective.
 
The other component of Augmentin XR (clavulanate) is known as a beta-lactamase inhibitor. Clavulanate stops the bacterial enzymes from breaking down the amoxicillin molecule. By itself, it has no significant antibacterial activity; it merely helps to prevent amoxicillin from being broken down by bacteria that would otherwise be resistant to amoxicillin. Essentially, clavulanate "augments" the activity of amoxicillin, hence the name Augmentin.
 

Can Children Use Augmentin XR?

Augmentin XR is approved for use in individuals age seven years and older, as long as they weigh at least 88 pounds. Other forms of Augmentin (such as the chewable tablets or liquid) are more suitable for young children, as they are available in lower strengths and in forms that are easier for children to swallow.
 

Off-Label Uses

On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend this product for treating something other than the conditions listed in this article. This is called an "off-label" use. Using Augmentin XR to treat any other type of infection would be considered off-label uses. Also, prescribing the drug to prevent any type of infection is considered an off-label Augmentin XR use.
 
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Augmentin XR Medication Information

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