Proloprim or generic Trimethoprim is an antibacterial drug that your doctor may prescribe to treat urinary tract infections (UTI), and to prevent recurrent UTIs. Proloprim also treats respiratory tract infections caused by bacteria; these include acute bronchitis and chronic bronchitis or pneumonia flare-ups. The generic alternative is not manufactured by the company that makes the brand product.
At times, your doctor may prescribe Proloprim if a bacterial infection is strongly suspected while waiting for test results. If the test indicates your infection is viral, you will be instructed to stop taking Proloprim as most viral infections are not curable and only the symptoms are treatable.
When taken as directed, Proloprim acts as a dihydrofolate reductase inhibitor. Bacterial cells need to produce DNA so they can grow and multiply. In order to do this, they must have folate (folic acid), but they are unable to take up folic acid like human cells can so they have to make their own. Proloprim will bind to the enzyme called dihydrofolate reductase which interferes with the folic acid pathway. Without folate, there is no bacterial DNA to increase their numbers and the infection cannot spread. Any remaining bacteria are either killed by your immune system or they die eventually.
Urinary tract infections occur most often in women, thought to be due to the shortness of the female urethra to vaginal and anal openings that makes it easier for bacteria to find their way into the urinary tract. The urinary tract consists of the kidneys, the tubes that lead to your bladder from the kidneys, and the tube that carries out the urine when you go to the bathroom. Reasons for recurrent UTIs include using a catheter, kidney or bladder stones, sexual activity, and having an enlarged prostate.
Ask your doctor if Proloprim is safe to take if you are pregnant, may become pregnant, or are breast feeding. Explain to your doctor other medical conditions or allergies you have as well as listing all Rx and OTC drugs you currently take or use, including herbal remedies and vitamin or dietary supplements, to be certain Proloprim is the right medication for you.
Until you know how your body will react to Proloprim, avoid driving and other actions that may be unsafe. Keep Proloprim out of children’s reach and away from pets. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any meds you take without talking with your doctor first as this may affect how Proloprim will work.