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Cilastatin is used in combination with imipenem to protect it from an enzyme called dehydropeptidase present in the kidneys in order to increase the antibacterial effect of imipenem. This combination is used in the treatment of complicated intra-abdominal infections, severe pneumonia, intra- and post-partum infections (infections that can occur during and after vaginal and cesarean delivery), complicated urinary tract infections, complicated skin and soft tissue infections, management of neutropenic patients (patients with abnormally few neutrophils in the blood) with fever and in the treatment of patients with bacteraemia (the presence of bacteria in the blood) that occurs in association with, or is suspected to be associated with, any of the infections listed above. 

How it works

Cilastatin is an enzyme inhibitor that belongs to the class of drugs called as renal dehydropeptidase and leukotriene D4 peptidase inhibitors. It inhibits the enzyme dehydropeptidase present in the kidneys which hydrolyses the antibiotic imipenem and thus helps in increasing the levels of imipenem which subsequently increases the antibacterial activity thereby preventing infections.

Common side effects

Vomiting, Nausea, Allergic reaction, Confusion, Diarrhoea, Fever, Rash


No medicine available

Expert advice

  • You will be monitored for kidney and liver function due to the risk of toxicity.
  • Tell your doctor if you are on a controlled sodium diet, as cilastatin contains sodium.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or are planning to be pregnant or are breastfeeding.
  • Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had seizures; a brain injury; kidney, liver, or gastrointestinal disease (especially colitis); or asthma.
  • Do not take if patient is allergic to cilastatin or any of its ingredients.
  • Do not take children less than 1 year, and child with a brain or nervous system infection, or weighs less than 66 lb (30 kg) and has kidney problems

Content on this page was last updated on 30 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)