Compare Cleocin vs. Flagyl

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Cleocin T
(clindamycin phosphate)

Flagyl
(metronidazole)

Topical treatment for acne. Cleocin T (Clindamycin Phosphate) is good for treating many bacterial infections and is available as a generic. If you're taking the vaginal form, you have to avoid sex and tampons for the period your doctor tells you to. The topical form can cause skin sensitivity and irritation.Treats and prevents bacterial infections. Flagyl (metronidazole) is very good at treating certain bacterial infections, but you can't have any alcohol while on it since it'll make you throw up a lot.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.79Cleocin
Reviews for Cleocin
57%
of people (All ages) say Cleocin is worth it
43%
say it works well
19%
say it's a big hassle
115 reviews
Have you used Cleocin T (clindamycin phosphate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it

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Have you used Flagyl (metronidazole)?
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Side effects
CleocinFlagyl
  • Any side effect 21%
  • Vaginal moniliasis 8%
  • Vulvovaginitis 6%
  • Vulvovaginal disorder 3%
  • Moniliasis (body) 2%
  • Fungal infection 2%
More Cleocin side effects »
  • Headache 18%
  • Nausea 10%
  • Metallic taste 9%
  • Genital itching 5%
  • Diarrhea 4%
  • Stomach problems 4%
  • Dizziness 4%
  • Stuffy nose 3%
  • Abnormal urine 3%
  • Menstrual cramps 3%
More Flagyl side effects »
How it works
CleocinFlagyl
Cleocin T (Clindamycin Phosphate) is an antibiotic and acne medicine. It kills bacteria by preventing them from reproducing and repairing themselves.Flagyl (metronidazole) is an antibiotic that kills bacteria by interacting with their DNA and preventing proteins from being made.
Type of medication
CleocinFlagyl
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
CleocinFlagyl
  • Topical
  • Cream, gel, or ointment
  • Foam
  • Vaginal cream
  • Vaginal suppository
  • Injection
  • Pill
  • Extended-release pill
  • Injection
Used for
CleocinFlagyl
Risk factors for serious side effects
CleocinFlagyl
  • History of liver disease
Detailed Cleocin T (clindamycin phosphate) risks & warnings »
  • Taking high doses of Flagyl (metronidazole)
  • Taking Flagyl (metronidazole) for a long time
  • Taking Flagyl (metronidazole) incorrectly
Detailed Flagyl (metronidazole) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

Interactions
CleocinFlagyl
No interactions related info.
  • Alcohol interacts with Flagyl (metronidazole) to cause a serious reaction in people that includes stomach upset, throwing up, feeling sick, or turning red. Avoid alcohol while you're taking Flagyl (metronidazole), and for 3 days after you're done taking it.
Alcohol
CleocinFlagyl
No alcohol related info.
  • Don't drink any alcohol (don't even use mouthwash with alcohol in it) while taking Flagyl (metronidazole) and for at least 3 days after using it, because it can cause a serious reaction in your stomach and make you throw up.
  • You can't drink alcohol while on Flagyl (metronidazole), and for at least 3 days after you finish it.
Food
CleocinFlagyl
  • Can be taken with or without food.
  • If you're on blood thinners, let your doctor know. Flagyl (metronidazole) can interact with your medicines and make you more likely to bleed.
Kidneys and liver
CleocinFlagyl
  • There have been reports of liver damage that can require hospitalization or can cause death. These have been rare. Talk to your doctor if you notice pain in your abdomen, loss of appetite, yellowing of your skin or eyes, or dark colored urine.
No kidneys and liver related info.
Pain
CleocinFlagyl
  • The forms taken by mouth can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
No pain related info.
Upsides and benefits
CleocinFlagyl
  • Available in generic.
  • Topical form treats acne.
  • Available in different oral forms: tablet, capsule, and suspension.
  • Available in forms to treat skin infections and vaginal infections.
  • Used to treat many types of bacterial infections.
  • Less resistance seen in bacteria to this antibiotic. Your doctor may run tests to see which antibiotics will kill the bacteria causing your infection.
  • Can be taken with or without food.
  • Flagyl (metronidazole) is good at killing a variety of bacteria.
  • Unlike many other antibiotics, Flagyl (metronidazole) is less likely to make bacteria resistant to it.
  • Most forms are available as a generic, so it's relatively cheap.
Downsides and risks
CleocinFlagyl
  • Have to take the oral forms with a full glass of liquid or with food since it can cause irritation in your stomach and esophagus.
  • If you're taking the vaginal form, you have to avoid sex and not use tampons for the period your doctor tells you to.
  • If you're allergic to aspirin, your doctor may have to prescribe an alternate.
  • If you have to take live vaccines, talk to your doctor when to take them since Clindamycin can make it less effective.
  • If you're taking the topical form, it can cause sensitivity and irritation.
  • You can't drink alcohol while on Flagyl (metronidazole), and for at least 3 days after you finish it.
  • Side effects can include nausea, headache, stomach upset, and a metallic taste in your mouth.
  • If you're taking Flagyl (metronidazole) for a long time, there's a risk of more side effects, such as nerve damage.
  • If you're on blood thinners, let your doctor know. Flagyl (metronidazole) can interact with your medicines and make you more likely to bleed.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
CleocinFlagyl
  • The forms taken by mouth can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
  • Take this medication exactly how your doctor tells you to.
  • Store the suspension at room temperature.
  • If you're using the topical form, it can take a few weeks to see the full effect.
  • Keep the topical form out of your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • If you're using the topical form, Don't put makeup or bandages over it.
  • If you're using the vaginal form, don't have sex before the doctor tells you it's ok.
  • Don't drink any alcohol (don't even use mouthwash with alcohol in it) while taking Flagyl (metronidazole) and for at least 3 days after using it, because it can cause a serious reaction in your stomach and make you throw up.
  • Take this medicine exactly as your doctor or pharmacist tells you. Don't stop taking it early, or the bacteria left in your body could become resistant.
  • If you're taking the extended-release (ER) form, take it 1 hour before, or 2 hours after you eat.
Learn more
More about CleocinSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Cleocin T (clindamycin phosphate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about FlagylSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Flagyl (metronidazole)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it