Common brand name: Mycostatin, Nilstat, Nystex
Why is this drug prescribed?
Nystatin is used to prevent fungus infections in the mouth and throat, such as thrush—also known as candidiasis or “white mouth.” Thrush looks like white fuzzy patches on the tongue, roof of the mouth, throat or esophagus.
This medication also may be prescribed to treat other conditions, as determined by your doctor.
Transplant patients routinely need to take an oral anti-infection preparation several times per day for 6 months following transplant or any time they have restarted taking a high dose of steroids.
How and when should this medication be used?
Nystatin is available in the form of liquid or dry powder that is mixed with water to form a solution. It also is available in the form of lozenges.
To effectively use the liquid form of nystatin, place one-half of the prescribed dose of the medication in each side of your mouth. Then swish the liquid in your mouth for at least 5 minutes before gargling and swallowing it. If you are not able to swish the liquid in your mouth, ask someone to help you apply the medication in your mouth with a toothette or toothbrush.
To effectively use the lozenge form of nystatin, hold the lozenge in your mouth for 15 to 30 minutes to allow it to dissolve completely. Do not chew the lozenge, and do not swallow it whole.
If you wear dentures, take them out before taking the medication; this allows the medication to come in contact with more of the tissues in your mouth. Your doctor may tell you to soak your dentures in the medication overnight to eliminate the infection from the dentures.
Do not eat or drink anything for at least 30 minutes after taking the medication. The medication is only effective when it is in contact with the tissues in your mouth; eating or drinking washes away the medication and its effectiveness.
Generally, you will need to take the medication after each meal and before bedtime. Your prescription label tells you how much to take at each dose and how often to take it. Follow these instructions carefully, and ask your pharmacist or doctor to explain any part that you do not understand.
It is important to take this medication regularly as prescribed; do not stop taking it, even if your symptoms have begun to clear up. If you stop using this medication too soon, your symptoms may return.
What special instructions should I follow while using this drug? Are necessary for this drug?
- All of the prescribed amount of this medication must be taken to prevent infection. Follow your dosage schedule carefully.
- Brush your teeth 30 to 60 minutes after taking this medication to prevent tooth
decay, especially after the dose you take before bedtime.
- Be sure you always have enough medication on hand. Check your supply before holidays or other occasions when you may be unable to fill your prescription.
- Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory so your response to this drug can be monitored.
What should I do if I forget to take a dose?
If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your regular dosage schedule.
What are the side effects of nystatin?
Nystatin may cause the following side effects, which may go away after you body adjusts to the medication.
- Abdominal cramping or pain
- Nausea or vomiting
If any of these side effects continue or are bothersome, check with your physician. If you have any other symptoms that are not listed above, contact your physician or nurse.
What storage conditions are necessary for this drug?
- Do not store this medication in direct heat or light.
- Do not store the dry powder form of this medication in the bathroom, near the kitchen sink or in other damp places. Heat or moisture may cause it to break down.
- Store the lozenge form of this medication in the refrigerator. Heat may cause it to break down.
- Keep the oral liquid form of this medication from freezing.
- Do not use this medication after the expiration date on the package.
- Keep this and other medications out of the reach of children.
When should I call my health care provider?
Call your health care provider:
- If your symptoms do not improve or worsen after one week of taking this medication.
- If you have any symptoms that cause concern or if you have any questions.
For More Information
If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 216.444.8282. We will be happy to answer your questions.