Quixin and Pregnancy
Based on the results of animal studies, Quixin is considered a pregnancy Category C medicine, meaning it may not be safe for women who are expecting. When extremely high doses of the drug's active ingredient were given orally to pregnant rats, it increased the risk for miscarriages and low fetal weight. However, a healthcare provider may prescribe this drug if the benefits outweigh the risks.
Quixin® (levofloxacin ophthalmic solution) is a prescription eye drop approved to treat bacterial conjunctivitis ("pink eye"). It belongs to a group of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones, or just "quinolones" for short.
Because Quixin is used in the eye, levels of the medication in the body are expected to be very low. Based on this information, Quixin is not thought to be particularly dangerous during pregnancy. However, all of the possible risks are not known at this time.
The manufacturer of the medication recommends that pregnant women use Quixin only if the potential benefits outweigh the potential risks to the fetus.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a pregnancy category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category C is given to medicines that have not been studied in pregnant humans, but do appear to cause harm to the fetus in animal studies.
In addition, medicines that have not been studied in any pregnant women or animals are automatically given a pregnancy Category C rating.
While Quixin has not been studied in pregnant women or animals, levofloxacin (the active ingredient in Quixin) has been studied in pregnant animals. When given to pregnant rats at very high doses (up to 7000 times the maximum recommended daily eye dose), oral levofloxacin increased the risk for miscarriage and reduced fetal body weight. Similar problems were not seen when the drug was given to pregnant rabbits.
It is also important to point out that the amount of Quixin expected to be absorbed into the bloodstream from the eye is very small. Therefore, it is difficult to make any conclusions about the drug's use in pregnancy based on oral levofloxacin information.
It is also important to note that animals do not always respond to medicines in the same way that humans do. Therefore, a pregnancy Category C medicine may be given to a pregnant woman if the healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the woman outweigh any possible risks to the unborn child.