Keflex, the brand name for cephalexin, is a cephalosporin antibiotic prescribed to treat specific bacterial infections, including urinary tract, ear, skin, bone and pneumonia infections. According to MedlinePlus, Keflex does not treat viral infections such as colds or the flu.
DailyMed warns that taking Keflex without the presence of a confirmed or highly likely bacterial infection raises the risk of developing drug-resistant bacteria. It is important to take Keflex precisely as indicated by the doctor and to finish the entire prescription.
According to MedlinePlus, prior to using Keflex, inform the doctor and pharmacist of any drug allergies and any other medications or vitamins that are currently being taken. Before prescribing Keflex, the doctor should be made aware of certain medical conditions, including a history of stomach problems, kidney or liver disease and colitis. Inform the doctor if the patient is pregnant, planning to become pregnant or breastfeeding before using Keflex. Contact the doctor if pregnancy occurs while using this medication. Prior to having surgery, inform the doctor or dentist that Keflex is being used. Prolonged or severe side effects from Keflex should be reported to the doctor. Contact the doctor immediately if certain side effects occur such as hives, wheezing or itching and several others.
Keflex is known as cefalexin and belongs to the class of drugs known as cephalosporins. It was developed in 1967. In 2012, it was one of the top 100 most-prescribed drugs in the United States, as reported by Pharmacy Times. Cefalexin is also included on the World Heath Organization's List of Essential Medicines, which is a list of the most important medications needed in a health system.