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phenoxymethylpenicillin, phenoxymethylpenicillin side effects
Phenoxymethylpenicillin, also known as penicillin V, is an antibiotic useful for the treatment of a number of bacterial infections Specifically it is used for the treatment of strep throat, otitis media, and cellulitis It is also used to prevent rheumatic fever and to prevent infections following removal of the spleen It is given by mouth

Side effects include diarrhea, nausea, and allergic reactions including anaphylaxis It is not recommended in those with a history of penicillin allergy It is relatively safe for use during pregnancy It is in the penicillin and beta lactam family of medications It usually results in bacterial death

Phenoxymethylpenicillin was first made in 1948 It is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system It is available as a generic medication The wholesale cost in the developing world is about 005 to 096 USD per day In the United States a course of treatment costs less than 25 USD


  • 1 Medical uses
  • 2 Adverse effects
  • 3 Mechanism of action
  • 4 Compendial status
  • 5 References

Medical uses

Specific indications for phenoxymethylpenicillin include:

  • Infections caused by Streptococcus pyogenes
    • Tonsillitis
    • Pharyngitis
    • Skin infections
  • Anthrax mild uncomplicated infections
  • Lyme disease early stage in pregnant women or young children
  • Rheumatic fever primary and secondary prophylaxis
  • Streptococcal skin infections
  • Spleen disorders pneumococcal infection prophylaxis
  • Initial treatment for Dental Abscesses
  • Moderate-to-severe gingivitis with metronidazole
  • Avulsion injuries of teeth as an alternative to tetracycline
  • Blood infection prophylaxis in children with sickle cell disease

Penicillin V is sometimes used in the treatment of odontogenic infections

It is less active than benzylpenicillin penicillin G against Gram-negative bacteria Phenoxymethylpenicillin has a range of antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive bacteria that is similar to that of benzylpenicillin and a similar mode of action, but it is substantially less active than benzylpenicillin against Gram-negative bacteria

Phenoxymethylpenicillin is more acid-stable than benzylpenicillin, which allows it to be given orally

Phenoxymethylpenicillin is usually used only for the treatment of mild to moderate infections, and not for severe or deep-seated infections since absorption can be unpredictable Except for the treatment or prevention of infection with Streptococcus pyogenes which is uniformly sensitive to penicillin, therapy should be guided by bacteriological studies including sensitivity tests and by clinical response People treated initially with parenteral benzylpenicillin may continue treatment with phenoxymethylpenicillin by mouth once a satisfactory response has been obtained

It is not active against beta-lactamase-producing bacteria, which include many strains of Staphylococci

Adverse effects

Further information: Penicillin drug reaction

Phenoxymethylpenicillin is usually well tolerated but may occasionally cause transient nausea, vomiting, epigastric distress, diarrhea, constipation, acidic smell to urine and black hairy tongue A previous hypersensitivity reaction to any penicillin is a contraindication

Mechanism of action

It exerts a bactericidal action against penicillin-sensitive microorganisms during the stage of active multiplication It acts by inhibiting the biosynthesis of cell-wall peptidoglycan

Compendial status

  • British Pharmacopoeia


  1. ^ a b c d e f WHO Model Formulary 2008 PDF World Health Organization 2009 p X ISBN 9789241547659 Archived PDF from the original on 13 December 2016 Retrieved 8 December 2016 
  2. ^ a b Hamilton, Richart 2015 Tarascon Pocket Pharmacopoeia 2015 Deluxe Lab-Coat Edition Jones & Bartlett Learning p 95 ISBN 9781284057560 
  3. ^ a b c "Penicillin V" The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Archived from the original on 20 December 2016 Retrieved 8 December 2016 
  4. ^ Greenwood, David 2008 Antimicrobial Drugs: Chronicle of a Twentieth Century Medical Triumph OUP Oxford p 121 ISBN 9780199534845 Archived from the original on 2016-12-20 
  5. ^ "WHO Model List of Essential Medicines 19th List" PDF World Health Organization April 2015 Archived PDF from the original on 13 December 2016 Retrieved 8 December 2016 
  6. ^ "Penicillin, Phenoxymethyl" International Drug Price Indicator Guide Retrieved 8 December 2016 
  7. ^ a b c Sweetman S, ed 2002 Martindale: The complete drug reference Electronic version ed London: Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain and the Pharmaceutical Press 
  8. ^ Rossi S, ed 2006 Australian Medicines Handbook Adelaide: Australian Medicines Handbook Pty Ltd ISBN 0-9757919-2-3 
  9. ^ a b Garrod, L P 1960 "Relative Antibacterial Activity of Three Penicillins" British Medical Journal 5172: 527–29 
  10. ^ a b Garrod, L P 1960 "The Relative Antibacterial Activity of Four Penicillins" British Medical Journal 5214: 1695–6 
  11. ^ a b c "Penicillin V Potassium tablet: Drug Label Sections" US National Library of Medicine, Daily Med: Current Medication Information December 2006 Archived from the original on 2009-07-27 Retrieved 2009-08-02 
  12. ^ British Pharmacopoeia Commission Secretariat "Index BP 2009" PDF Archived from the original PDF on 11 April 2009 Retrieved 26 March 2010 
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