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The Dangers of Fluoroquinolones

Antibiotics can be an absolute lifesaver and they are, easily, one of the most important scientific advancements of the 20th century. However, as with all scientific advancements, there have been some recent developments that take this important discovery too far.

In drugs like Cipro and Levaquin, scientists have developed a group of antibiotics known as fluoroquinolones. The liberal use of this extremely potent, wide spectrum antibiotics poses a major threat to our microbiome.

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  • christine

    I already took Cipro 10 years ago for urinary track infection and I lost almost 10 pounds in one week and I could not sleep. I had to stop after because it was dangerous for me, After, I was few weeks with diarrhea.. And finally I can say that I was feeling very weak,insomniac and depress

    • Jo

      You need to be treated for C diff immediately. Only one antibiotic can cure that, In the meantime get on Probiotics right away and always take Probiotics anytime your given antibiotics, you need to balance out your gut. Never take Cipro again!! It’s extremely dangerous for some people and sounds like you should definitely steer clear!! Yogurt also has natural probiotics in it, that will also help. What happens is antibiotics kill off bad bacteria, but it can also kill off the good bacteria that is necessary in your gut to help balance everything out. I’ve had CDiff myself, it was the sickest I’ve ever been and was a long battle to finally get my body balanced again. I’ll never touch Cipro again and neither will my family!!

      • Jo

        Sry, I just now read that it was 10 yrs ago. No need to be tested now, but its possible that’s what you had back then.

      • christine

        I took the test for C difficile in that time and i didn’t have it

      • christine

        But I know about probio. I take some already and will be tested for parasit in the next days. Thanks!

  • Mark A Girard

    Thanks Dr. Perlmutter for your continued diligence in support of the fluoroquinolone community and for doing all you can to prevent more people from joining us. There are actually HUGE numbers of people who have been harmed by these drugs but 99.99% of them have no idea what went wrong; after all, who thinks of an antibiotic they took weeks, months, even years before when their tendons rupture or they get neuropathy or they develop mysterious cartilage lesions or they get intense anxiety or blood clots or bone spurs or photo-sensitivity or their nails fall off or grow wierd or their bones break for no reason or their teeth crumble or they get severe headaches and confusion or twitches and tremors or mystery bruises or muscle weakness or chronic fatigue or sudden weight loss or chronic diarrhea or loss of bladder control or hair loss or nasty rashes or a funky smell or low oxygen counts or insane insomnia or multi-chemical sensitivity or vivid nightmares or arrhythmia or fluctuating blood pressure or food intolerances or wild mood swings or really bad breath or double vision or floaters or detached retina or tinnitus or broken blood vessels or ligament problems or slipped discs or bloody noses or a hernia or altered perception of time or brutal calluses or stomach pain or pulmonary edema or joint pain or dry mouth or chemical taste or numbness and tingling or sweat malfunctions or phantom pain that comes and goes or any of hundreds of other “symptoms” of fluoroquinolone toxicity. These drugs penetrate into every part of our bodies, which is great for the one in a thousand of us who actually has a bone marrow or brain infection, or some other life threatening problem, but for the rest it just means the possibility of horrific damage from head to toe, often lifelong and sometimes fatal. It also usually leads to a misdiagnosis like fibro or ALS or MS or Parkinson’s or any of a hundred other wrong diagnoses. The average doctor leaves a giant swath of carnage
    in his or her wake, oblivious to the fact that they are wreaking havoc in
    people’s lives and causing most of the problems their patients will return to
    get treated for some time in the future, but even if it’s right away, they will
    still discount the possibility that they could have caused it and will instead
    prescribe more drugs to treat the “symptoms” of the adverse reaction they
    caused. This is how Americans end up on so many drugs, and BIG PHARMA is laughing all the way to the bank. They are floxing us on purpose to sell us
    more drugs and telling doctors these drugs are the gold standard in safety. That is why we can’t get our doctors to listen to us and why you have probably never heard of this. If you have suffered any of the symptoms I listed and you have taken Levaquin, Cipro, Avelox, Floxin, Tequin, Factive or any antibiotic ear drops or eye drops then you should join us in Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Group, the biggest and busiest of many different groups that work together to support the FQ community. You owe it to yourself to google some of the terms here to see how big this problem really is. Best wishes to all!

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/floxies/

    • Marylynne Leoncavallo

      My grandson was meeting his benchmarks g o t ear infection didn’t respond to amoxicilli so gave him Cipto ne x t ear infection they gave him Levaquin he has had two more doses of each plus another that starts with A. He has stopped developing. No longer talks. He screams . He is 23 months but all development has stopped at 10-12 months. Where do I go? Who do I talk too

      • MY LIFE ruined by Levaquin

        Please join the many support groups on facebook who are victims of Fluoroquinolone Toxicity, tons of support and info….The Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Group…..The Fluoroquinolone Toxicity 24/7 Live Chat Group….Marylynne Leoncavallo

    • Marylynne Leoncavallo

      A l so I took ciprofloxin n Levaquin I had museless so bad it broke my hip I’m still having tgem n t h ey are snapping tendons n my feet tingle what do o do

  • Elizabeth Lo

    Thanks Dr. Perlmutter for warning the public about the dangers of fluoroquinolones! You are saving lives from devastation.

  • Paula

    Thank you for the article and your support.

  • Barb Studebaker

    Thank you Dr. Perlmutter for talking about the dangers of these drugs. I took Cipro and Levaquin in May 2012 for a suspected UTI. I ended up with tendonitis, horrific anxiety, insomnia, tremors, loss of taste and smell, sudden weight loss and many other adverse effects. The worst effects didn’t occur until weeks after taking the pills. I had been a perfectly healthy woman until then. Suddenly I’m afraid I’m going crazy because no doctor will believe these drugs harmed me. I finally found a doctor that believed I had a toxic reaction and started to help me get a handle on everything happening to me. I hope your video helps to educate others so they can avoid being permanently harmed like so many of us.

  • twalt01

    I’m so happy that more medical professionals are involved in spreading awareness about the dangers of fluoroquinolone antibiotics. While I don’t expect they will be pulled from use, it is important that they are not prescribed for simple infections. And important that the lives that have been affected or even lost from these antibiotics are made known. It seems I’m reading about someone each week that could no longer handle the adverse reactions and chose to take their own lives. Often not finding help from their doctors when they needed support the most. It is a heartbreaking experience and we are met with such challenges both physically and mentally while trying to find our way back to normal often on our own. Again thank you for putting this vidro together.

    • Mark A Girard

      Well said.

  • Mandy Florida

    Thank you for covering this story! Levaquin, cipro and avelox have ruined the lives of many who were young, healthy and athletic prior to taking these meds for minor infections. These drugs can permanently disable (or kill) even the healthiest person. I hope the mitochondrial warnings come out ASAP. Hopefully the news coverage will spare some lives but the FDA needs to act quickly or many, many more will suffer needlessly. I do believe that the percentage of people harmed when taking these meds is much, much higher than estimated. This is because the side effects are so strange that patients (myself included) may take these meds more than once and have side effects not imagining that the antibiotic is causing them. For example: ‘When you have a sinus infection and take an antibiotic and gradually feel worse and develop body aches and joint pains, the natural inclination is to think that your infection got worse. When you complete the round of antibiotics, the doctor may look into the new joint pains and myalgias (and other symptoms) and diagnose you with fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome. (It happened to me.) It may take a few rounds of this before you realize that when taking a safer antibiotic you never got these strange pains and your CFS didn’t get worse… but every time you took cipro, levaquin or avelox, your fibromyalgia or CFS pains and symptoms got worse and over time they got cumulatively worse.’ This is how many get fully disabled by theses meds. You are not to take them again if you ever experience side effects but doctors are not trained to question and look out for the appropriate side effects. In fact if you report side effects, doctors appear to have been ‘trained’ (likely by pharm reps) to dismiss your complaints. The damage is cumulative and doctors and patients need to know to never take fluoroquinolone antibiotics again if you ever have a side effect. Who knows how many people that have been diagnosed with CFS or fibromyalgia are actually suffering from side effects from fluoroquinolone antibiotics. The symptoms are similar and both tend to start after an illness or after a surgery. (Note patients tend to be given these antibiotics for illnesses and during surgery. Fibromylagia tends to start after surgery or an illness. Is that a coincidence? Or are doctors overlooking something very serious? How many people that have CFS or fibromyalgia developed their illness after taking these antibiotics? Do they really have CFS or fobromyalgia or are they suffering from long term or permanent side effects from fluoroquinolone antibiotics?)

  • Chris Butler

    My nightmare began in 2002 when I was prescribed Levaquin 7 times with prednisone by my former ENT. They never cured the sinus infection. Over the next 10 years, I would be prescribed Levaquin and Avelox, almost always with prednisone. The doctors never asked or suspected Levaquin or Avelox did the damage. And when I confronted some of them, they denied the drugs did this.
    The end result was 7 tendon tears, 8 surgeries to include hip replacement this year. The drugs caused Ulcerative Colitis and nerve damage. I consider myself lucky in comparison to the serious damage and death these drugs are responsible for. Just say No to fluoroquinolones. Ask your doctor for something safer. These drugs were not intended for common infections.

  • palomita

    Fluoroquinolone toxicity is not uncommon it is just vastly unreported. I am still dealing with the physical,visual and neurological damage after nearly six years. Thank you Dr. Perlmutter for helping us make people aware of the danger.

  • Thank you for airing the danger of the fluoroquinolone class of antibiotics. As someone who was also harmed, I feel it should be mandatory to warn anyone being prescribed, or treated in a hospital setting. These should only be used in a life or death situation, not randomly given for things that could be treated with something a lot less dangerous. Many people are having their lives dramatically altered and some have even been killed. Since the pharmaceutical industry and doctors aren’t doing what they should to protect us, it is vitally necessary to get the word out by other means, to warn to public. Again, thank you!

    Fluoroquinolones go by many names. All are dangerous.

    Generic and Brand Name

    First Generation

    Flumequine Flubactin
    Nalidixic acid NegGam, Wintomylon
    Oxolinic acid Uroxin
    Piromidic acid Panacid
    Pipemidic acid Dolcol
    Rosoxacin Eradacil

    Second Generation

    Ciprofloxacin
    Cipro, Cipro XR, Ciprobay,
    Ciproxin
    Enoxacin Enroxil, Penetrex
    Lomefloxacin Maxaquin
    Nadifloxacin Acuatim, Nadoxin, Nadixa
    Norfloxacin Lexinor, Noroxin, Quinabic, Janacin
    Ofloxacin Floxin, Oxaldin, Tarivid
    Pefloxacin Peflacine
    Rufloxacin Uroflox

    Third Generation

    Balofloxacin Baloxin
    Gatifloxacin Tequin, Zymar
    Grepafloxacin Raxar
    Levofloxacin Cravit, Levaquin
    Moxifloxacin Avelox, Vigamox
    Pazufloxacin Pasil, Pazucross
    Sparfloxacin Zagam
    Temafloxacin Omniflox
    Tosufloxacin Ozex, Tosacin

    Fourth Generation

    Besifloxacin Besivance
    Clinafloxacin
    Gemifloxacin Factive
    Sitafloxacin Gracevit
    Trovafloxacin Trovan
    Prulifloxacin Quisnon

    Veterinary Fluoroquinolones — Yes, they flox our pets too!
    • Advocin, Advocid (danofloxacin)
    • Baytril (enrofloxacin)
    • Dicural, Vetequinon (difloxacin)
    • Floxasol, Saraflox, Sarafin (sarafloxacin)
    • Ibaflin (ibafloxacin)
    • Marbocy, Zeniquin (marbofloxacin)
    • Orbax, Victas (orbifloxacin)

  • Rene

    Thank you so very much for adding your voice to this very serious subject.
    It is a continuing tragedy that so many are being injured, with a plethora of systemic issues. Muscoskeletal, Central Nervous, Peripheral Neuropathies, Occular, Optical issues, Digestive issues, Disabilities as extreme as needing wheel chairs, neck and knee braces, unable to stand or walk, or lift their small children……WE NEED more Medical Doctors to speak out.
    The public is being ignored which includes various doctors/surgeons that have also personally been maimed or disabled from this class of Anti-biotics.
    The Medical community needs to stand up and take back their place from the Pharmaceutical companies and the FDA who is the Fox guarding the chickens.

    These are chemotherapeutic antibiotics which have no business being prescribed without full disclosure, about the horrors that occur. Whether it is one pill or 3 pills as it was for me. Or the 5th bottle over a period of 5 years. These were only to be prescribed as a last case resort for life threatening conditions. For the love of God this has to stop and the FDA has to be cleaned out from the executives who have ties with BIG PHARMA and Monsanto. Too many falsified data, research, and phony manipulated science that is perpetrated on the families every day of the week. We have more illness at younger ages and drug abuse, and drug induced illness…..and it is a disgrace and an abomination against all that is holy and good.

    In Jesus name, we pray to be delivered from this plague the FDA and BIG PHARMA, & MONSANTO, SYNGENTA. May our land and her people be restored and healed. AMEN.

  • Betty Cecconi

    This stuff is evil

  • Mary Hope

    Dr. Permutter, my mother was hospitalized for a broken hip. She was transported to an inpatient nursing home. They gave her Levaquin for a UTI. From that point on, she developed an all out psychotic break. She could not endure the PT., and had to be placed in a psyche ward for two weeks! She had dementia but was not ever psychotic or delusional. It was heartbreaking. I recall the Social Worker saying she had to call in an infectious disease doctor and called the CDC while in the psyche ward. I was so confused. They had to put her on several psychotic drugs and recommended she return to the nursing home to complete her “rehab for a broken hip”. After a few more weeks, insisted they release her home to my care. She was released to me with no fewer than 20 medications. On her first doctor visit, she was in so much pain, they had to give her shots of Morphine. After she returned home, the home health nurses said she needed Hospice care. She was dead in two weeks. I never saw this coming. I had taken her off statins two years before. She had memory problems but the downward spiral was over the top. I still can’t get those visions of her suffering out of my mind. When I saw your blog of fb about these two broad spectrum antibiotics, I finally realized what may have happened to my poor mom. Thanks, Dr. Permutter. I just finished Brain Maker. I should have asked more questions. I could kick myself.

    • Mark A Girard

      Hi Mary. I am sorry to hear about your mother; my condolences to you and your family. You should be able to trust your doctors and the medical system. This is not your fault. The system is corrupted and broken, perhaps beyond repair. Do not feel guilty, just share your story and do what you can to help us bring about change. Best wishes!

    • Rosie

      Not trying to deter from the antibiotic issue, but when she was initially treated for the broken hip, did she receive opiates or general anesthesia ? Lewy Body dementia is a sleeper and a single anesthesia exposure can push you into full blown LBD. I discovered this with my Mom in 2004 when very few professionals knew LBD.

      • Rosie

        Also, anticholeringenic drugs suppress the very brain chemical that is already compromised in LBD

  • Bonnie Jacobus

    Thank you Dr.Perlmutter for being willing to caution casual use of fluoroquinolones.I hope your colleagues are listening. What do you recommend for healthy gut flora after Cipro toxicity? How about maintenance?

  • Pam

    Thank you for educating us on the dangers of fluoroquinolones. I was given Cipro after acquiring an intestinal parasite while in Indonesia. Although Cipro cleared up my digestive issues, I later that year ended up with a torn tendon in my left ankle, which required surgery. My friend, a nurse, who had also been given Cipro, (we ate at the same restaurant together), told me that tendon tears are a side effect of taking Cipro. Why didn’t the doctor tell me? When I asked the surgeon about the possibility that my tendon tear was related to the Cipro use, he said that there was no way to prove my tear was caused by the drug and that it was better than living with the diarrhea.

  • rose casanova

    I was actually prescribed Cipro by my functional medicine doctor to cure my gut dysbiosis that I didn’t even know I had. I trusted him and have now been house bound for nearly a year. I’m getting better after being poisoned by Cipro but it is one hell of a upward climb. Thank you so much for having the guts to talk about the dangers of these drugs.

  • Nadine Hemy

    Last year I was prescribed Cipro and one other antibiotic to combat a severe upper respiratory infection. After taking just 2 days worth, I honestly felt like i was going to die. It made me feel terribly weak, and just horrible! I called the doctor and told him that I had to discontinue it, thankfully! Never again.

  • Linda Celauro

    I belong to a fluoroquinolones toxicity group –the stories will make your blood curdle:(

    • Julie

      Please tell me more, I might like to join the group too

      • Linda Celauro
      • Kyah Kelley

        It’s a great support group, very inviting. You can ask questions and get answers, along with great support. Everyone’s so nice there, I think you’ll love it.

  • Rebecca Cody

    My husband was given Cipro by his urologist for blood in his urine and for his prostate and kept on it for several months, despite the fact that a urine culture showed NO BACTERIA. When I mentioned that fact to his GP he didn’t understand. Fortunately it didn’t seem to harm him as it has so many others. But, some months later we were on a long car trip and he once more had blood in his urine. They had done a culture before we left home and the doctor recommended another antibiotic, but we were far from home and he had brought Cipro with him, so he took it for a week.

    Then, as we were on top of the Huey P Long bridge over the Mississippi, he had a panic attack and barely made it off the bridge to pull over. He had never had an attack like that before. The next big bridge that aimed for the sky was over the Houston ship canal. He pulled over as soon as he saw it ahead and I drove the rest of that day.

    A few days later we were in mountains and he panicked when we rounded a bend and there was a large canyon off to the side of the road. This happened twice more in other places. After that I drove almost the entire distance home over the next two weeks.

    We didn’t connect it with the Cipro and he has gotten over those problems, perhaps because he does get home fermented foods. But I stumbled across the website http://www.survivingcipro.com. Then the nickel dropped! So many, many people have suffered devastating life-changing damage by those nasty drugs.

    We now put Cipro, Levaquin and Avelox down on all forms filled out for doctors and hospitals so we should NOT be given them, even if we are unconscious. I encourage EVERYBODY I know to list those drugs with all their doctors as extreme allergens, whether they have ever taken them or not.

    Some people don’t seem to be harmed, or at least not terribly so. I have wondered if that has to do with genetics. Specifically, about 70% of people in this country have a markedly compromised ability to methylate because of the MTHFR genetic defect. This makes it more difficult to clear toxins through the liver. I’m homozygous (genes from both parents) and things affect me that don’t bother others. Could those people who suffer terribly from these drugs also have a compromised ability to detoxify because of poor methylation? I can’t help thinking that may be a key along with a devastated microbiome caused by the drugs.

  • Marceline

    I have taken Cipro on several occasions for a UTI, fortunately with no serious side effects. I tried a less “dangerous” antibiotic, but it was not effective in curing the infection. So the challenge is–how can we cure bacterial infectionsWITHOUT resorting to these potentially dangerous drugs?

  • ddapda

    Thank you, I was damaged by these drugs in 2010, the medical profession will not say yes or no, only it is possible. So I suffer in silence with, not only ruptured tendons, the orthopedic MD, after an MRI, said the tendons were shredded, peripheral neuropathy, weakness, chronic fatigue, loss of balance, pain in the arms and legs, vision problems, so many problems for which there are no cures . Depression, which I fight every day. I just push myself, and I know that I am not alone, even though this is a lonely place to be. Stress and fatigue just makes the symptoms worse. And that is what we suffer, symptoms for which there is no specific disease or cure.

  • Judi Berry

    Thank you, Dr. Perlmutter. I was healthy all my life until I took Cipro for a suspected UTI. I was over 60 when my doctor prescribed it, and I was told of no warnings or side effects. I woke up one day a few weeks after, with numb hands and feet. It progressed into peripheral neuropathy in my legs, which was devastating as I could hardly walk with my rescued golden retriever. I also noticed some urinary changes. The damaged progressed and here I am two years later with more neuropathy in my feet, causing swelling and terrible nerve pain, so that I cannot sleep and constantly feel tired. I feel that this drug turned me into an invalid. I was once independent and now I have to look for outside help in my daily life. I still cannot find anything effective for my nerve pain. Most doctors don’t seem to know about the dangers of these drugs, I don’t know why they are not getting this news. This should be on the front pages! My neurologist did believe me, as he had seen it happen in another one of his patients with CNS damage. Please continue to help spread the word.

    • Melanie bottorff

      Thank you dr. Perlmutter. One thing I do not see mentioned is how these drugs are also many times used to prevent infections. They are being used during surgery, used before a surgery and with no infection to fight they seem to attack the body in many ways. This is how I was destroyed. Thank you for you attention to this devastating antibiotic which is being misused. Melanie Bottorff

  • Julie

    I too was prescribed Levaquin for a sinus infection. I felt ‘weird’ after only a few doses but continued taking it for several more days. The symptoms started in earnest on a Sunday afternoon when, while reading the newspaper, I was not able to see the words on the page, kind a tunnel vision effect, it lasted 15 minutes or so. The next day I felt weirder than the past few days but went to work. By lunch time I was very anxious about how I felt but went to lunch with some coworkers. In the middle of lunch my entire left side stopped working, paralyzed. With their help I was rushed to the ER. The ER staff didn’t know what was going on either, I told them about the Levaquin but got the feeling they didn’t believe me, they treated me like a hypochondriac or crazy person. They finally started taking it serious when failed a reflex test. Reflexes were intermittent on that side, my biggest fear was that my other side and my breathing would be affected next, but it never came to that. I was admitted, they did MRIs, ultrasounds, blood work. I saw a neurologist and he never did have a definitive diagnosis. I told him what I had read about Levaquin on line but he didn’t buy it. 2 days later I was sent home with a diagnosis of a migraine or a mini-stroke. It took me months to get over the anxiety. I will never take a fluoroquinolone again.

  • Marilyn Danner Samuel

    Thank you Dr. Perlmutter for this article. FLuoroquinolones should be used as a last resort – if without it you may die. Damaged microbiome is just one of the many, awful adverse reactions from this group. As a Levaquin survivor, I know Mark Giard from a Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Group. What he says is on the mark. Many folks are suffering for years. I was “lucky”. After only several months of not being able to do anything but sit and let my husband take care of everything, I had bilateral hip replacement because the Levaquin tightened my tendons in the pelvis so tight that the hip joints were worn away. A shoulder rotator cuff tendon was almost totally torn. I was lucky to be under the care of a holistic DC who had me do probiotic enemas for my microbiome and other treatments that I’m sure helped minimize the damage. Three and a half years past Levaquin I am functional with only minimal shoulder problems and weakness of the hands.

  • Eve

    Ok so they are dangerous too our system but if you need to take them how can you take them safely . Maybe replenishing the good bacteria while taking with fermented foods and oral probiotics?

    • Rosie

      I know this is 6 mos. past, but they are discussing this topic @onlinehealth at the microbiome Summit this week 🙂

  • I took Cipro and about 4 other antibiotics for a urinary track infection about 10 years ago which made me really sick, hospital, then gastro and he said it gave me Ulcerative Colis. first they said I had Crohns disease and he asked me how long I had it and I just looked at him. Told him about all the antibiotics, how I broke out from head to toe allergic to them and then this. He said about 5% of people actually do develop it this way. So now I have had a colonoscopy every 5 years, pollops taken out each time and on Pentassa for it to keep it in remission. Is there more I can do to help myself? Does anyone ever get an attorney and go after someone for doing this to us?

  • Rosie

    I am curious if there have been any reports of hearing defects? I can remember starting a course of Cipro for a UTI and discontinuing because of the metallic taste & it dried my mouth out so bad…

  • Lea M. Cheshareck

    I took Cipro and thought it was going to literally kill me! I stopped taking it after only one or two doses and have refused it at least one other time since. Rule of thumb if the drug makes you feel worse – STOP! It’s not worth continuing to take it and there are alternatives your doctor can use if you ask questions!

  • Dana Seykora O’Keefe

    Thank you Dr. Perlmutter for taking time to shed light on this topic. I have have numerous body system issues since taking Fluoroquinolones almost two years ago. You are very well respected so please keep this discussion alive.

  • Deb

    I’m suffering with chronic diarrhea since late February 2015 I’ ve been following your Grain Brain approach since Nov of 2013. I’m dairy free as well. My MD can’t figure anything out. Help me in Canada.

  • Michael Blackwood

    The FDA is failing to protect the public from the fluoroquinolone class of antibiotic. The ACTUAL horrific effects of this class of medication can be delayed by months to over a YEAR and are not listed in the package insert of the drug so most health care professionals think they are relatively safe. The effects can be chronic and progressive. Floxing or fluoroquinolone toxicity (FQAD) is a man made chronic disease state that has no cure. Some people recover over time but many never do. I’m sure there are many people diagnosed with CFS are actually “floxed”. People’s lives are being ruined but the FDA and the drug companies have known this for a long time and have failed to disclose the devastating, quality of life destroying effects of this class to the public and the health care community. Never take a fluoroquinolone antibiotic unless your life depends on it. The risks do NOT outweigh the benefits. I cannot stress enough the severity of the possible bizarre side effects of these drugs. The decision to take Cipro was the absolute worst decision of my entire life.

    Michael rPh. <—- pharmacist!

  • MY LIFE ruined by Levaquin

    7years and counting……

  • Arley

    Dr. Perlmutter, thank you so much for bringing light to the dangers of these over-prescribed drugs. I had one 3-day stint on Cipro, and the pain and brain fog started instantly. I fear it could have been worse, but I was on a Paleo Diet when it started, so I think that helped. Your book “Grain Brain” helped open my eyes and I now am working on protecting my health naturally. If possible could you please address the mitochondrial damage of flouroquinolones, how it occurs and how that would effect the brain. Thank you again.

  • disqus_BaPdivUyM6

    I agree with this very much, What he said goes along with what is listed as happening in my medical records while in the hospital on levoquin, I also believe that this poison is damaging or mutating our mitochondrial cell,

  • Dee McLin Brumley

    Thank you for this. I was given Levaquin for a life threatening staff infection in my nose. After taking it just a few days, I all of a sudden got severe pain in my knees. I went back to my ENT and he took me off them & told me I could never take fluoroquinolones again as it could kill me!! Sent me to a neurologist who diagnosed me with fibro. Of course since then the ENT has denied he ever said anything about the fluoroquinolones to me. But I list them on my allergies list and monitor very closely what I am given. I still suffer the constant every day pain and since then my health has gone down hill.

  • Kyah Kelley

    I took Ciprofloxacin and had a delayed reaction, where about 2 to 4 weeks later my legs felt like they were being torn every time I’d try and stretch in the morning, I had to wear a leg brace to work for 3 months. Then the head aches and migraines started, I got them every day for months. Then they’d go away, then they’d come back again for months at a time again, and went on like that for yrs. Then I took it again (since I had no idea it was the cipro, didn’t quite make the connection) and I couldn’t even work the anxiety was so bad. I tried anyway and ended up collapsing 4 hours in. Turns out I had a TIA (transient ischemic attack, or mini stroke). Since that day I haven’t been able to work, later that week, I started having convulsions, my body would seize and I felt like I was being shocked with a cattle prod. The headaches got worse and closer together, but again it was a week delayed so I had no idea it was the cipro. In September 2015 a friend from an MS support group told me, all of this may be caused by cipro. Everything she said matched up with the horrors of the symptoms I had, it made SO much sense to me at that point. I confirmed it with a background from walgreens that both times those awful things happened to me, I had taken ciprofloxacin. Ever since I’ve been experimenting on myself with different vitamins and supplements to find what works. Still haven’t quite found a way to recover, although I’ve found a few that help the awful pain.

  • Floxie

    Sadly nearly 4 months after many spoke at the FDA hearing, we have yet to hear anything from the FDA.

    The FDA has posted the video recording to the
    whole meeting. The 3rd link is the public testimony. The 4th is the
    voting and recommendations from the panel to the FDA.

    • Start of Meeting to Morning Break: https://collaboration.fda.gov/p28guhbz4py/

    • Morning Break to Lunch Break: https://collaboration.fda.gov/p4r7n9ab271/

    • Lunch Break to Afternoon Break: https://collaboration.fda.gov/p7q9g54ygww/

    • Afternoon Break to End of Meeting: https://collaboration.fda.gov/p644nkzdcva/

    600 page document on FQAD (the name the FDA has given the
    poisoning syndrome FQs cause):

    http://www.fda.gov/downloads/AdvisoryCommittees/CommitteesMeetingMaterials/Drugs/Anti-InfectiveDrugsAdvisoryCommittee/UCM467383.pdf

  • Helen Hamilton

    Last year I was given Levaquin for a sinus infection. After only two pills I landed on the floor. I was able to call 911 – spent a week in the hospital because this antibiotic cancelled out the Warfarin I’ve been taking for 11years. The hospital took me off all meds temporarily. Since I have mechanical valves Warfarin is crucial to control PT/INR. I had weeks of PT and visiting nurses for loss of leg strength. Levaquin should NOT be on the market. I now deal with a-fib as well.

  • Peggy Wilkie

    HI, My husband has been suffering terribly for the last 5 years with Neuropathy side the use of AVALOX, and I would like to know is there anything her can do to reverse or help what has happened to him?

  • Willow Joines

    I took Cipro for two weeks after I had surgery for endometriosis. Within a very short time I started having siezures. This was followed by unrelenting fatigue, light sensitivity, cognitive problems, depression etc.. I was bed bound for a year. This was 6 years ago. I have never been the same since. I lost the ability to work and to function normally in the world. These drugs ruin people’s lives, and I am one of those people. Thank you for bringing awareness to this very big problem.

  • Margaret Port

    What do you do if two different drs tell you (a) this is the only drug to treat pseudomonas aeruginosa, and (b) it does not have fluorine in it, and (c) are adamant that it is the only treatment? I am over 60, am on corticosteroids, have pulmonary hypertension and atriall fibrillation. I am sure fluoride caused the ph, but have yet to convince any dr of this. I feel that if I take Cipro as I have been prescribed, I will take maybe one or two doses and that will be the end of me. There were several antibiotics listed but they are iv and I was told I am not sick enough to take them. Anyone got any suggestions?

  • Robert Blank

    Was Dr. Perlmutter at the FDA hearing? The FQ issue is as much political as it is medical. Have you spoken with your state rep. or senator about banning the off-label use of FQs in your state? I’m going to. Year ago I lobbied in my professional capacity, and successfully, for inclusion of cystic fibrosis meds to be included in one state’s crippled children’s financial aid program. It’s not rocket science, bu it does take persistence. Bringing the problem to the attention of the public is one thing. Taking legislative action is another. Expect pushback, but keep on pushing.

    • MY LIFE ruined by Levaquin

      Please Robert Blank, please do what ever you can, to bring the FQ issue to light. with your local, county, state and federal reps……you will be saving their lives as well…..wishing you much success….

  • Tracer

    Does anyone know if there is a blood test that can be done to see if you got poisoned by these drugs and if so what is it called and who does it? Thank You!!!!

  • Linda Stevs

    I was floxed finaIly in 1/2013 (I was 63 years old) . I had a complete breakdown 6 weeks after my last of a 10 day dose…..I realize I had been on Cipro close to 7 times in the past few years..I often had a bad reaction which was often mis-diagnosed as hashimoto thyroid and severe fibromyalgia ..(I had an allergy to Pennycilin (sp) and Sulfa from overuse as a young child.) I also was on a lot of medications including Larium for Lyme/Babesia. My 89 year old mother was put on Levaquin just a couple of months ago.
    My real question is this…..are the recommendations in “Brain Maker” to care for mitrochodria (sp) STILL HELPFUL IF THE DAMAGE HAS COME FROM QUINOLONES????? Does DR. Perlmutter recommend and way to help with the viability of mucus membranes that are often dried out and do not regain viability and protect from nasal and ear problems? My issues wax and wane but are still present . Who can help us??? Linda

  • Tracy Jean

    Im a cipro victim. Please keep up the coverage. This drug wrecked my healthy body. Please dont let this coverage stop. I was just an average middle-aged (54) person when i took it. 2 years agony so far. Im begging u to continue to warn the public. Thank you.

  • Deborah Billirakis

    The fact that the prescription should have been clearly prescribed for minor illnesses due to the President, H. Clinton and CEO of FDA was being hidden purposely for financial gain is the main reason most people who are generally careful about inquiring about the information about their illness and the medicine prescribed would not have been told due to even doctor’s being withheld the information needed in order not to prescribe these broad spectrum “antibiotics” bomb shells that have caused so much damage (many permanent) to patients. So May 2009 Hamburg makes millions and June 2009 I become disabled, chronic severe pain daily since 2009, loss of my job, friends (I can’t go out easily) family doesn’t see me much and my Husband had to learn to cook, shop, laundry, and He never did any of that we’re just winging this it still doesn’t work like the it did when I had the family working like clock work….it was a wonderful life. Still we try hard to “pretend” I am as ill as I am but it’s impossible. Floroquinolones were a money making opportunity that bought Obama and Hilary Clinton. http://www.abc2news.com/news/in-focus/johnson-johnson-former-fda-commissioner-among-defendants-in-levaquin-lawsuit

  • Miss Riley

    I have also experienced fluoroquinolone toxicity. About 8 years ago, after just a few doses, I went to bed one afternoon feeling exhausted. I woke up after having horrific vivid nightmares, and found myself sweating, shaking, and literally having auditory hallucinations, anxiety, tachycardia, and a strange prickly sensation covering my entire face. I started vomiting profusely. I felt like I’d been given really bad LSD.
    I stopped taking them and my synptoms went away after a few days, luckily.
    To this day I can’t find anything that describes the kind of CNS effects and the auditory hallucinations I experienced while taking the fluoroquinolones, and I’ve had several doctors act like I’m just crazy, or insist that it must have been triggered by something else. But I know these antibiotics definitely were the cause.

  • Not an idiot

    Hmm probiotics are immune to fluroquinolone antibiotics? I wonder how they replicate in the gut. There is inherit dangers with any drug. You either use them or you don’t. Ciproflaxacin, damn you I wanted to have neurologic symptoms naturally.

  • Lisa Radice

    I will not take cipro. Some people tell me my fears are ridiculous. What am I supposed to do about staph infection though?

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  • Kati

    Dr Perlmutter, How is it that you, as a Neurologist, are so aware of the damage that fluoroquino
    lones can do, yet no other Neurologist I have seen will even discuss that this is even remotely possible? I wish I had a Neurologist like you that could evaluate me. I am so frustrated. Thanks, Kati

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