Levofloxacin is a synthetic chemotherapeutic antibiotic of the fluoroquinolone drug class and is used to treat severe or life-threatening bacterial infections or bacterial infections that have failed to respond to other antibiotic classes. It is sold under various brand names, such as Levaquin and Tavanic, the most common. In form of ophthalmic solutions it is known as Oftaquix, Quixin and Iquix.
Levofloxacin is a chiral fluorinated carboxyquinolone. Investigation of ofloxacin, an older drug that is the racemic mixture, found that the l form [the (â)-(S) enantiomer] is more active. This specific component is levofloxacin.
Levofloxacin interacts with a number of other drugs, as well as a number of herbal and natural supplements. Such interactions increase the risk of cardiotoxicity and arrhythmias, anticoagulation, the formation of non-absorbable complexes, as well as increasing the risk of toxicity.
Levofloxacin is associated with a number of serious and life-threatening adverse reactions as well as spontaneous tendon ruptures and irreversible peripheral neuropathy. Such reactions may manifest long after therapy had been completed and in severe cases may result in life-long disabilities. Hepatoxicity has also been reported with the use of levofloxacin.