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Clindamycin is a semisynthetic lincosamide antibiotic that has largely replaced lincomycin due to an improved side effect profile. Clindamycin inhibits bacterial protein synthesis by binding to bacterial 50S ribosomal subunits. It may be bacteriostatic or bactericidal depending on the organism and drug concentration.
Adverse effects include nausea (may be dose-limiting), diarrhea, pseudomembranous colitis, allergic reactions, hepatoxicity, transient neutropenia and eosinophilia and agranulocytosis. Pseudomembranous colitis occurs in 0.01 – 10% of patients and occurs more commonly than with other antibiotics. Use of the topical formulation of clindamycin results in absorption of the antibiotic from the skin surface. Diarrhea, bloody diarrhea, and colitis (including pseudomembranous colitis) have been reported with the use of topical and systemic clindamycin.
For the treatment of serious infections caused by susceptible anaerobic bacteria, including Bacteroides spp., Peptostreptococcus, anaerobic streptococci, Clostridium spp., and microaerophilic streptococci. May be useful in polymicrobic infections such as intra-abdominal or pelvic infections, osteomyelitis, diabetic foot ulcers, aspiration pneumonia and dental infections. May also be used to treat MSSA and respiratory infections caused by S. pneumoniae and S. pyogenes in patients who are intolerant to other indicated antibiotics or who are infected with resistant organism. May be used vaginally to treat vaginosis caused by Gardnerella vaginosa. Clindamycin reduces the toxin producing effects of S. aureus and S. pyogenes and as such, may be particularly useful for treating necrotizing fasciitis. May be used topically to treat acne.