sulphonamide

sulphonamide
n.
one of a group of drugs, derived from sulphanilamide (a red dye), that prevent the growth of bacteria (i.e. they are bacteriostatic). Sulphonamides are usually given by mouth and are effective against a variety of infections. Because many sulphonamides are rapidly excreted and very soluble in the urine, they are used to treat infections of the urinary tract, especially in combination with other drugs (such as trimethoprim).
A variety of side-effects may occur with sulphonamide treatment, including nausea, vomiting, headache, and loss of appetite; more severe effects include cyanosis, blood disorders, skin rashes, and fever. Because of increasing bacterial resistance to sulphonamides, and with the development of more effective less toxic antibiotics, the clinical use of these drugs has declined. Those still used include sulfadiazine, sulfametopyrazine, sulfasalazine, and sulfamethoxazole (combined with trimethoprim in co-trimoxazole).

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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