Q. Will taking antibiotics cause diarrhea or loose stools?

Answered by
Dr. Srinivas Morampudi
and medically reviewed by Dr.Nithila A
Published on Jun 22, 2019

Hello doctor,

I took antibiotics about a month ago, and ever since the fourth day of antibiotic treatment, I have been suffering from diarrhea or loose stools. On the fourth day, I had bad cramps and loose stools that lasted from the fourth day to the seventh day. This then returned afterward with even worse pains, but this time, I had yellow stool followed by diarrhea. Ever since I have been having loose stools on and off that is foul smelling and mushy. Is this because of the antibiotics, or is it an infection?

Dr. Srinivas Morampudi

Internal Medicine


Welcome to icliniq.com.

Your diarrhea could be a direct side effect of the antibiotic, in which case, it should resolve after stopping the antibiotic. It could also be due to a condition called Clostridium difficile infection (C. diff for short). C. diff is a bacterium typically found in the intestines of most people. But under certain circumstances (frequent exposure to antibiotics), a couple of strains of this bacteria can multiply and produce toxins (called C diff toxin A and B). This can provide diarrhea-sometimes bloody, with crampy abdominal pain.

I suggest getting tested for C diff. You need to submit a stool sample for C diff toxin. If it is positive, there are treatments for it includes oral Vancomycin, Fidaxomicin, or Metronidazole. I hope this helps.

Was this answer helpful?


Also Read Answers From:

Comprehensive Medical Second Opinion.Submit your Case

Related Questions & Answers

What are the causes of white and yellow lesion with a red border on my tongue?

Query: Hello doctor, I have small white and yellow lesions with a red border on my tongue. My tongue also develops a white coating, that has to be scrapped of daily. I have attached a photo of the same. What are the likely causes?  Read Full »

My son often has severe cough in the mornings. Could it be an allergy?

Query: Hello doctor, My son is 2 years and 8 months old. He has a severe cough nowadays, especially in the morning. I am currently giving him Levolin syrup for his cough. Also, he vomits after a bout of a cough. He has a history of wheezing and was prescribed nebulizers by the doctor. I need to give him...  Read Full »



Ask your health query to a doctor online?

Ask a Medical Gastroenterologist Now

* guaranteed answer within 4 hours.
Enter Your Health Query
You can upload files and images in the next step.



Disclaimer: All health Q&As published on this website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice or treatment by a trained physician. Seek the advice from your physician or other qualified health-care providers with questions you may have regarding your symptoms and medical condition for a complete medical diagnosis. Do not delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice because of something you have read on this website.