Table of contents

  • Brand Names
  • Drug Combinations
  • Chemistry
  • Pharmacologic Category
  • Mechanism of Action
  • Therapeutic Use
  • Unlabeled Use
  • Pregnancy and Lactation Implications
  • Contraindications
  • Warnings and Precautions
  • Adverse Reactions
  • Toxicological Effects
  • Genes that may be involved
  • Substrate of
  • Inhibits
  • Drug Interactions
  • Nutrition/Nutraceutical Interactions
  • Dosage
  • Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics
  • Special Considerations

Brand Names


Austria: Chloramphenicol, Halomycetin; Belgium: Chloramphenicol; Bulgaria: Chlornitromycin; Cyprus: Medophenicol; Czech Republic: Chloramphenicol; Denmark: Kloramfenicol; Estonia: Oftan-Akvakol; Finland: Chloromycetin, Minins Chloramphenicol, Oftan-Akvakol, Oftan Chlora, Oftan Kloramfenikol; Germany: Chloramphenicol, Chloro-Sleecol, Chloromycetin, Parkefelin, Posifenicol C; Greece: Chloramphenicol, Chloromyk, Urso-Fenol; Ireland: Chloramphenicol, Chloromycetin; Italy: Chemicetina, Cloramf, Mycetin, Sificetina, Vitamfenicolo; Latvia: Oftan-Akvakol, Sintomicīna; Malta: Chloramphenicol, Chloromycetin, Kemicetine, Posifenicol C, Vitamfenicolo; Poland: Cusi Cloramfenicol, Detreomycyna; Portugal: Cloranfenicol, Clorocil, Micetinoftalmina; Romania: Cloramfenicol; Slovakia: Chloramphenicol; Slovenia: Chloramphenicol; Spain: Oftamolosa Cusi Cloramfenicol; Sweden: Chloromycetin, Kloramfenicol; UK: Chloramphenicol, Kemicetine, Minins Chloramphenicol.

North America

Canada: AK Chlor Liq, Chloromycetin, Chloroptic, Diochloram, Pentamycetin; USA: Chloramphenicol.

Latin America

Argentina: Bioticaps, Chloromycetin, Cloranfenicol, Farmicetina, Plusclorán, Poenfenicol, Quemicetina; Brazil: Arifenicol, Clorafenil Colirio, Cloranfenicol, Neo Fenicol, Profenicol, Quemicetina, Sintomicetina, Uni Fenicol, Visalmín, Vixmicina; Mexico: Abefen, Brocil, Cloramfeni, Cloramfenicol, Clorampler, Cloran, Cloranmicron, Clorazin, Clorfenil, Clorofunon, Clorotan, Diarman, Enteromicin, Estreptopal, Exacol, Fenicol Oftálmico, Fenisol, Lebrocetin, Leclor A, Oftadil, Omycet, Palmiclor, Palmifer, Palmisol, Procloril, Pronicol, Quemicetina, Solvaris, Uniclor.


Japan: Chlomy, Chloramphenicol, Chloromycetin, Hysetin.

Drug combinations

Chloramphenicol and Collagenase

Chloramphenicol and Dexamethasone

Chloramphenicol and Hydrocortisone

Chloramphenicol and Prednisolone

Chloramphenicol, Betamethasone, and Tetrahydrozoline

Chloramphenicol, Dexamethasone, and Phenylephrine

Chloramphenicol, Dexamethasone, and Tetracaine

Chloramphenicol, Ephedrine, and Tripelennamine

Chloramphenicol, Neomycin, and Hydrocortisone

Chloramphenicol, Neomycin, and Phenylephrine

Chloramphenicol, Resorcinol, and Salicylic Acid


Chloramphenicol: C~11~H~12~Cl~2~N~2~O~5~. Mw: 323.13. (1) Acetamide, 2,2-dichloro-N-[2-hydroxy-1-(hydroxymethyl)-2-(4-nitrophenyl)ethyl]-, [R-(R*,R*)]-; (2) D-threo-(-)-2,2-Dichloro-N-[β-hydroxy-α-(hydroxymethyl)-p-nitrophenethyl]acetamide. CAS-56-75-7.

Chloramphenicol Sodium Succinate: C~15~H~15~Cl~2~N~2~NaO~8~. Mw: 445.18. Butanedioic acid, mono[2-[(2,2-dichloroacetyl)amino]-3-hydroxy-3-(4-nitrophenyl)propyl] ester, monosodium salt, [R-(R*,R*)]-. CAS-982-57-0.

Pharmacologic Category

Antibacterials; Chloramphenicol. (ATC-Code: D06AX02; D10AF03; G01AA05; J01BA01; S01AA01; S03AA08).

Mechanism of action

Inhibits protein synthesis in susceptible organisms and rapidly proliferating mammalian cells by reversible binding to 50S ribosomal subunits. May cause reversible bone marrow depression due to inhibition of protein synthesis in mitochondria of bone marrow cells. Active against Gram-positive aerobes such as Streptococcus pneumoniae and other streptococci. Also active in vitro against Bacillus anthracis. Active against Gram-negative aerobes such as some strains of Brucella, Burkholderia mallei, B. cepacia, Francisella tularensis, Haemophilus influenzae, Neisseria meningitidis, Proteus mirabilis, Salmonella, Shigella, Vibrio cholerae, and Yersinia pestis. Active against anaerobes such as Bacteroides fragilis, Clostridium, Fusobacterium, Prevotella melaninogenica, and Veillonella. Active against other organisms such as Rickettsia, Chlamydia, and Mycoplasma. Inactive against fungi and viruses. Resistance reported in staphylococci, S. pneumoniae, Escherichia coli, H. influenzae, Neisseria meningitidis, Salmonella, and Shigella.

Therapeutic use

Serious infections due to organisms resistant to other less toxic antibiotics.

Pregnancy and lactiation implications

Crosses the placenta. No reports of fetal harm related to use of chloramphenicol in pregnancy. Gray syndrome has occurred in premature infants and newborns receiving chloramphenicol. Enters breast milk (use with caution).

Unlabeled use

Anthrax (anthrax meningoencephalitis). Brucellosis. Infections caused by Burkholderia cepacia. Glanders caused by B. mallei. Melioidosis caused by B. pseudomallei. Psittacosis (ornithosis) caused by Chlamydia psittaci. Infections caused by Clostridium perfringens. Ehrlichiosis caused by Ehrlichia chaffeensis. Plague caused by Yersinia pestis. Rat-bite fever. Cholera (Vibrio cholerae). Tularemia (Francisella tularensis).


Hypersensitivity to chloramphenicol or any component of the formulation. Treatment of trivial or viral infections. Bacterial prophylaxis.

Warnings and precautions

May cause serious and fatal blood dyscrasias (aplastic anemia, hypoplastic anemia, thrombocytopenia, and granulocytopenia). Should not be used for minor infections or when less potentially toxic agents are effective. Risk of Gray syndrome if serum levels ≥50 µg/mL (caution if impaired hepatic or renal function). Prolonged use may result in fungal or bacterial superinfection, including C. difficile-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis. Caution in G6PD deficiency. Caution in neonates. May cause false-positive results in urine glucose tests when using cupric sulfate.



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