Gentamicin: What is it? Indications, Side Effects, Dosage, Interaction and Pregnancy

It is a broad-spectrum aminoglycoside antibiotic that is more effective against gram-negative aerobic bars.

Gentamicin is also used with other antibiotics to treat infections caused by organisms such as Staphylococcus aureus and certain streptococcal species.

In addition, it is used in combination with a penicillin antibiotic to treat endocarditis(heart infection).

Gentamicin kills bacteria by inhibiting the synthesis of bacterial proteins. It binds irreversibly to the ribosomal subunits.

This binding interferes with the formation of RNA, the subsequent formation of non-functional proteins, and the eventual death of susceptible bacteria.

Gentamicin was approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1966.


It is indicated in treating the following infections when sensitive organisms cause it. The official local guidance on the appropriate use of antibacterial agents should be considered:


Serious Gram-Negative Infections:

Positive Gram Infections:

  • Bacteriemia.
  • Abscesses
  • Accidental and operative trauma.
  • Burns and severe skin lesions.

Is injectable gentamicin available as a generic medicine?

Generic available: Yes.

Do I need a prescription for a gentamicin injection?

Yes, a recipe is necessary.

What are the side effects of gentamicin injection?

Side effects associated with the use of gentamicin are:

  • Edema.
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Kidney problems
  • Headache.
  • Liver problems
  • Reactions at the injection site.
  • Hair loss.
  • Itch.
  • Convulsions
  • Dizziness.
  • Depression.
  • Confusion.
  • Electrolyte abnormalities.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting
  • Increased salivation.
  • Visual problems.
  • Hearing impairment
  • Respiratory problems.
  • Fever.
  • Pain in the joints.
  • Anemia.
  • Decrease in white blood cell count.
  • Decrease in platelets.
  • Allergic reactions, and others.

What is the dose for the injection of gentamicin?

The dose of gentamicin is usually based on body weight. The total daily dose and duration of treatment depend on the condition or infection being treated.

Dose adjustment is necessary for patients who have impaired renal function. The doses are adjusted to reach the maximum and minimum levels.

The usual dose ranges for IM or IV:

  • Conventional dosage: Administer 1 to 2.5 mg / kg / dose every 8-12 hours.
  • Dosage once a day: Administer 4 to 7 mg / kg / day.

What medications or supplements interact with the injection of gentamicin?

Gentamicin may decrease the effectiveness of BCG and typhoid vaccines.

The cephalosporins, amphotericin B (Amphocin), cisplatin (Platinol), colistimethate, cyclosporine (Sandimmune), loop diuretics, mannitol (Osmitrol), and vancomycin (Vancocin).

They can increase the risk of experiencing side effects related to the gentamicin kidney.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents (NSAIDs) can decrease renal excretion or eliminate gentamicin. Examples of NSAIDs are:

Neuromuscular blockers may increase the risk of experiencing respiratory problems by depressing the activity of respiratory muscles when administered with gentamicin.

Diuretics such as furosemide (Lasix), bumetanide (Bumex), and torsemide (Demadex) may increase ototoxicity (hearing impairment) associated with gentamicin treatment.

Is the injection of gentamicin safe if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

Gentamicin is excreted in human milk. Due to the lack of safety data, gentamicin should be used cautiously in nursing mothers.

The benefits of breastfeeding, the potential risk of exposure to a child’s medicine, and the risk of inadequate or untreated infection.

They should be considered when deciding whether gentamicin should be used in breastfeeding women.

What are gentamicin injection preparations available?

  • Gentamicin sulfate solution for injection: 10, 40 mg / ml.

How should I keep the gentamicin injection stored?

Gentamicin is usually given as an injection in the hospital, clinic, or doctor’s office.

The patient who uses the gentamicin solution in the home should consult with his health care provider for details about the proper storage of his medication.


Injectable gentamicin is an antibiotic prescribed to treat bacterial infections of the respiratory tract, bones, skin and soft tissues, stomach, blood, and heart.

Before taking this medication, side effects, drug interactions, patient safety, and dosage and storage information should be reviewed.