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Kanamycin (Amforol)
Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith
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Kanamycin is an antibiotic which is used most commonly as an ingredient in Amforal, a treatment for diarrhea in dogs. Larger doses can cause hearing and vestibular (balance) impairment, and kidney damage.

Generic Name

Brand Name

Combination Product
Amforal contains kanamycin plus bismuth subcarbonate and aluminum magnesium silicate

Type of Drug
Aminoglycoside antibiotic

Form and Storage
Amforol oral suspension and tablets store at room temperature.
Kantrim injectable store at room temperature.

Indications for Use
Treatment of susceptible bacterial infections. Amforol is used to treat susceptible intestinal bacterial infections (bacterial diarrheas).

General Information
FDA approved for use in dogs and cats. Available by prescription. Kanamycin is bacteriocidal. Useful in treating many gram positive and gram negative bacteria. Resistance is slow to develop to kanamycin.

Usual Dose and Administration
Contact your veterinarian.

Side Effects
May cause pain at injection site especially if given intramuscularly (IM). The bismuth subcarbonate in Amforol may produce a darkening of the tongue and stools which can be confused with melena (blood in the stool). Prolonged exposure to orally administered bismuth salts has been associated with encephalopathies in other species with symptoms which may include lack of energy, muscle twitching, confusion, convulsions, and comas.

Do not use in patients hypersensitive (allergic) to the aminoglycoside antibiotics.

Do not use in patients undergoing general anesthetic.

Do not use in patients with kidney disease or dehydration.

Do not use in animals who require their hearing to perform their work (military dogs, police dogs, seeing eye dogs, etc.) as the hearing or vestibular (balance) impairment may not be reversible.

Not for use in pregnant or nursing animals.

Early signs of toxicity include loss of balance and vomiting.

Use caution when treating those patients under 5 pounds or very young puppies and kittens as the recommended dosage may produce kidney or hearing damage.

Treatment of intestinal Salmonella infections may result in prolonged shedding of the micro-organism. Follow-up cultures after treatment are strongly advised by the manufacturer.

Drug or Food Interactions
Do not use in combination with other aminoglycosides.

Do not use with other products that may cause hearing loss, vestibular disease, or kidney disease.

Do not use with diuretics as it increases the risk of kidney damage.

Early signs of toxicity include loss of balance and vomiting. May see symptoms of kidney disease including increase or decrease in drinking, lack of appetite, vomiting, depression, coma, and death.

Keep this and all other medications out of the reach of children and pets.

If you think your pet has been poisoned...

Contact your veterinarian or one of the Animal Poison Hotlines (listed below) if you think your pet may have accidentally received or been given an overdose of the medication.

**ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center - 24-hour service available throughout North America.

1-888-4ANI-HELP (1-888-426-4435). $65.00 per case, billed to caller's credit card.

Follow-up calls can be made for no additional charge by dialing 888-299-2973.

There is no charge when the call involves a product covered by the Animal Product Safety Service.

**Pet Poison Helpline - 24-hour service available throughout North America for pet owners and veterinary professionals who require assistance with treating a potentially poisoned pet.

1-800-213-6680 ($59.00 per incident). Staffed 24-hours a day.

Updated 6/20/17

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