Proper Use

Take this medicine only as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. To do so may increase the chance for side effects.

To help clear up your tuberculosis (TB) completely, it is very important that you keep using this medicine for the full time of treatment, even if you begin to feel better after a few weeks. If you have TB, you might have to take rifampin every day for several months. It is important that you do not miss any doses.

Take the capsule on an empty stomach, 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal, with a full of glass water. It is important to take this medicine on a regular schedule.

If this medicine upsets your stomach, take it with food. Antacids may also help. However, do not take aluminum-containing antacids (eg, Maalox®, Mylanta®) within 1 hour of the time you take rifampin. They may keep this medicine from working properly.

For patients unable to swallow the capsule:

  • A special liquid form of the medicine can be prepared by your pharmacist.
  • Shake the bottle well before each dose.
  • Measure the liquid with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup. The average household teaspoon may not hold the right amount of liquid.

If you are taking itraconazole, do not use rifampin 2 weeks before and during itraconazole treatment.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (capsules):
    • For the treatment of meningitis bacteria in the nose or throat:
      • Adults—600 milligrams (mg) 2 times a day for 2 days.
      • Children 1 month of age and older—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is 10 mg per kilogram (kg) of body weight every 12 hours for 2 days.
      • Children younger than 1 month of age—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is 5 mg per kg of body weight every 12 hours for 2 days.
    • For the treatment of tuberculosis:
      • Adults—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is 10 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight once a day. Your doctor may increase your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 600 mg per day.
      • Children—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is 10 to 20 mg per kg of body weight once a day. Your doctor may increase your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 600 mg per day.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

If rifampin is taken on an irregular schedule, side effects may occur more often and may be more serious than usual. If you have any questions about this, check with your doctor.

Storage

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

The specially prepared oral liquid form may be kept at room temperature or in a refrigerator for 4 weeks. Do not use the liquid after the expiration date on the label.