U.S. doctors online nowAsk doctors free
West Monroe, LA
A 31-year-old female asked:

I was prescribed 500mg metronidazole twice a day for 7 days..i only took 4. so many does it really take the whole 14 pills to clear up?

5 doctor answers9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Dustin Colegrove
Internal Medicine 14 years experience
Take all of them: It is important to take all of your medication as prescribed even if you are feeling better 4 or 5 days into the course of treatment.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Tanya Russo
Pediatrics 27 years experience
Finish all Rx!: The number of days a medication is prescribed is based on lots of studies and research. You should absolutely take all the medication as prescribed or you risk incomplete cure and/or developing resistant infections that require more and stronger medications.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. David Krulak
Family Medicine 25 years experience
Antibiotics: The danger of not taking all the pills in an antibiotic prescription is in the possibility of under treating the infection. You can treat the infection to a point where you no longer have symptoms, but have not yet killed off the organisms. The ones remaining can then resurface with resistance to that antibiotic, which makes them harder to treat in the future.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Pedro Cabrera
Specializes in Anesthesiology
Yes: You have partially treated your condition and by stopping the treatment because you feel better makes no sense because you have not completely destroyed the source of the infection. If you get a relapse the bacteria may have become resistant and the Cipro (ciprofloxacin) might not work.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Jeff McFadden
Family Medicine 26 years experience
Pills?: No one can answer that question because you haven't said why you are being treated. It may be for BV (bacterial vaginosis) or some other type of infection. Generally speaking, yes it does take the entire course to clear up and infection and in some rare cases the infection still doesn't clear up after 1 week of use. We prescribe a week because it usually takes a full week to treat effectively.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Last updated Jul 10, 2019

Disclaimer:

Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.