Here's the quick google-search-definition of a black box warning:
A few years ago I was in my car, talking to a guy who's pharmacist (who was also a family friend), told him that the antibiotic he was just prescribed could kill him. The friend (who'd been the family's pharmacist for a long time) said, "I could lose my job over this, but I have to tell you this."
I asked the guy what antibiotic he was prescribed, but he couldn't remember. So I finally just got around to googling antibiotics that have black box warnings, and you can see the list further down the page. I was surprised to see Cippro is on that list.... I took that stuff MANY times, for bladder infections, in my 20s and 30s.
Rifaximin is the antibiotic that seems to be most commonly prescribed for people with hepatic encephalopathy. You can read more about that drug HERE. Rifaximin doesn't have a black box warning, but if you scroll down that page, you'll this part, which does make me feel somewhat uneasy:
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking rifaximin (Xifaxan)?
You should not use take this medication if you are allergic to rifaximin or medications such as rifabutin (Mycobutin), rifampin (Rifater, Rifadin, Rifamate), or rifapentine (Priftin).If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a rifaximin dose adjustment or special tests:
- severe liver disease;
- diarrhea with a fever; or
- watery or bloody diarrhea.
Spironolactone (not an antibiotic but a common diuretic given to just about everyone with cirrhosis) also has a black box warning, and you can read about that by clicking HERE. You can also read about the serious side effects of Furosemide (another common diuretic that's typically given with Spironolactone) by clicking HERE. And PLEASE be sure to read THIS PAGE, as well.