Clindamycin is an antibiotic useful for the treatment of a number of bacterial infections. This includes middle ear infections, bone or joint infections, pelvic inflammatory disease, strep throat, pneumonia, and endocarditis among others. It can be useful against some cases of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). It may also be used for acne and in addition to quinine for malaria. It is available by mouth, intravenously, and as a cream to be applied to the skin or in the vagina.
Common side effects include nausea, diarrhea, rash, and pain at the site of injection. It increases the risk of hospital-acquired Clostridium difficile colitis about fourfold. Other antibiotics may be recommended instead due to this reason. It appears to be generally safe in pregnancy. It is of the lincosamide class and works by blocking bacteria from making protein.
Clindamycin was first made in 1967. It is on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system. It is available as a generic medication and is not very expensive. The wholesale cost in the developing world is about 0.06 to 0.12 USD per pill. In the United States it costs about 2.70 USD a dose.