How to use Macrobid for UTI (Urinary Tract Infections)

macrobid for uti
Medically reviewed by Dr. Mavra Farrukh

Key Takeaways

  • Macrobid, also known as Nitrofurantoin, is a broad-spectrum antibiotic commonly prescribed for urinary tract infections (UTIs).
  • Its effectiveness lies in its ability to target and eliminate bacteria responsible for UTIs, relieving symptoms.
  • Macrobid is a strong antibiotic due to its action against multiple bacteria causing UTIs.
  • Healthcare professionals carefully determine the appropriate Macrobid dose to ensure effective bacterial eradication.


In addition to being highly annoying and painful, urinary tract infections tend to recur frequently. Macrobid, also known as Nitrofurantoin Monohydrate, is one antibiotic that your doctor may prescribe after conducting lab tests to determine the severity of your urinary tract infection. 

Your specific condition and presenting symptoms will determine the dosage schedule, medication strength, and duration. To treat acute cystitis and urinary tract infections, it is suggested to use Macrobid. It also helps in treating infections caused by Staphylococcus, E. coli, and Saprophyticus. In this blog, we will go over Macrobid use for UTIs in great detail.

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How to take Macrobid for UTI?

Take Macrobid with food for optimal absorption and to reduce the risk of GI distress. Whether you are eating a large meal or just a snack, taking Macrobid with food will increase its effectiveness. Maintaining consistent dosing schedules is critical when taking Macrobid. Because of this, the medication can continuously combat the bacteria that cause UTIs because its concentration in the blood remains constant.

No matter how much better your symptoms get while taking this medication, you still need to follow the prescribed regimen. Drinking plenty of water while taking Macrobid can help flush out the infection and avoid side effects like crystalluria, which is the formation of crystals in the urine.

Dosage forms and strength

Various dosage forms of Macrobid are available, such as capsules and suspensions. If a patient has special requirements, such as a liquid form requirement or difficulty swallowing capsules, their healthcare provider may suggest a different form. Taking 100 mg of Macrobid twice a day for five to seven days is the typical dosage. This length of time is necessary to kill all of the infection-causing bacteria.

How effective is Macrobid for UTI?

The effectiveness of Macrobid in combating urinary tract infections has been reported by numerous individuals who have taken the medication. People typically start to feel within a few days after starting the medication.

Nitrofurantoin, the active ingredient in Macrobid, is effective against UTIs because it increases the immune system’s capacity to fight off bacteria and stops them from reproducing. Macrobid is effective because it kills a broad range of bacteria that cause UTIs and rapidly reduces the discomfort associated with these infections.

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How fast does Macrobid work?

The antibacterial effects usually kick in within the first two days of starting treatment with Macrobid. No more bacterial replication and relief from pain, urgency, and frequency of urination symptoms are experienced as the Nitrofurantoin starts exerting its effects.

The effectiveness of Macrobid is due to its potency and its capacity to quickly alleviate the pain that is frequently associated with UTIs. Patients may experience varying degrees of symptom relief from UTIs when taking Macrobid, but many report feeling better quickly after starting the medication.

When is the best time to take Macrobid for UTI?

Macrobid for UTIs is most effective when taken at the correct intervals and helps keep treatment on track. Many people have found relief by consistently taking Macrobid at the times prescribed as guided by their healthcare provider. Taking the antibiotic at the same time each day, with or without food, maximizes absorption and decreases the chances of side effects.

Does Macrobid interact with other medications?

Certain medications are risky when combined with Macrobid, so it is important to inform your healthcare provider about any existing health conditions, especially those involving the kidneys. Antacids containing magnesium trisilicate are one example of a medication that may interact with Macrobid by affecting its absorption. It is also possible that proton pump inhibitors and other drugs that lower stomach acid levels will affect how well Macrobid works. 

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Can I take Macrobid while pregnant?

It is important to consult your physician before taking Macrobid while pregnant. Concerns have been raised about using Nitrofurantoin, the active ingredient in Macrobid, particularly in the third trimester of pregnancy. Although studies have shown a low risk of birth defects, the pros and cons must be carefully considered. It can be safely prescribed during the first trimester.

Healthcare providers may prescribe Macrobid to pregnant women when the benefits outweigh the risks, such as when treating severe UTIs. Discussing the pregnancy and any concerns with your doctor to ensure the health of both you and the developing baby is critical. Consult your physician for personalized recommendations, risk assessments, and alternative courses of action exploration.

How can you manage Macrobid side effects?

Macrobid is an effective treatment for UTIs, but taking steps to minimize the risk of side effects is important. The most common adverse effects are nausea, headache, and mild gastrointestinal distress. In many cases, gastrointestinal side effects can be lessened by taking Macrobid with a meal. Drinking plenty of water is one way to decrease the chances of side effects like crystalluria.

Consulting a healthcare provider is essential as they might suggest different drugs, change the dosage, or give you more instructions to help with pain. Although,rare but serious side effects include life-threatening allergic responses. Quick medical assistance is required for serious side effects such as a rash, itching, swelling, extreme vertigo, or trouble breathing.

When to consult a doctor?

You should consult a medical professional without delay if you experience serious adverse effects like trouble breathing, chest pain, or severe allergic reactions like swelling or itching.

Seek medical attention immediately if you experience any side effects, including excessive fatigue, persistent nausea, or jaundice.

Before beginning or continuing to take Macrobid, it is crucial to inform your doctor if you are pregnant, trying to conceive, or breastfeeding. Moreover, maintaining good health during Macrobid therapy requires proactive communication between you and your healthcare provider so that they can make timely adjustments to your treatment plan.

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Other questions about Macrobid

Is Nitrofurantoin a strong antibiotic?

The active ingredient in Macrobid, Nitrofurantoin, is an antibiotic highly effective against various bacteria often linked to UTIs.

Does Macrobid make you tired?

One of the rare side effects of Macrobid is fatigue. However, different people may experience different side effects. You should always contact your doctor if you feel unusually fatigued.

Does Nitrofurantoin make you urinate more?

Among the rare side effects of Nitrofurantoin, increased urination is not often reported. It is advised to drink more water with Nitrofurantoin, which may require you to urinate more. Talking to your doctor about changes in your urine habits is very important.

Does Macrobid treat kidney infection?

Although the dosage and treatment plan for kidney infections may vary, Macrobid is occasionally prescribed. Talk to your doctor for specific instructions on treating kidney infections.

Is Macrobid safe for kidneys?

Taking Macrobid as directed usually does not pose any risk to the kidneys. The doctor can adjust the treatment plan if the patient informs their healthcare provider of pre-existing kidney conditions.

How effective is Macrobid for UTI?

When it comes to treating UTIs, Macrobid shines. It alleviates symptoms of a urinary tract infection (UTI) by killing bacteria through its action mechanism.

Is Macrobid a penicillin?

Macrobid is not from the class of penicillin. Moreover, this antibiotic is different from penicillins in that it is a member of the nitrofuran class.

What if Macrobid doesn’t work?

Possible causes for Macrobid’s ineffectiveness include antibiotic resistance or incorrect diagnosis. To explore alternative solutions, consult your healthcare provider.

Does Macrobid treat Klebsiella Pneumoniae UTI?

Although Macrobid is effective against some UTI-causing bacteria, its effectiveness against particular strains, such as Klebsiella pneumonia, may differ. Based on the results of your tests, your doctor will be able to give you advice.

Can Macrobid cause constipation?

Macrobid may cause constipation in very rare cases. If you are dealing with ongoing gastrointestinal problems, it is recommended that you consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice.

Can Nitrofurantoin cause kidney damage?

There is a rare incidence of kidney damage with nitrofurantoin usage over the long term. Healthcare providers should keep a close eye on patients who are taking extended Macrobid therapy.

What bacteria does Macrobid treat?

Bacteria like Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus saprophyticus, which are often linked to urinary tract infections (UTIs), are effectively killed by Macrobid.

Does Macrobid change urine color?

Macrobid has the potential to cause innocuous changes in urine color, specifically a yellowish-brownish tint. However, you should not be worried about it.

Your Doctors Online uses high-quality and trustworthy sources to ensure content accuracy and reliability. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and medical associations to provide up-to-date and evidence-based information to the users.

Rick Pescatore, “Is Macrobid Safe in 1st Trimester Pregnancy?”, REBEL EM blog, July 23, 2018. Available at:

Alagh, A. A Randomized Trial of Preoperative Prophylactic Antibiotics Prior to Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy: Part I Interval Update.


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