Compare Levaquin vs. Flagyl

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

Levaquin
(levofloxacin)

Flagyl
(metronidazole)

Kills bacteria. Levaquin (Levofloxacin) is good for treating many bacterial infections and is available as generic. However, it can cause damage to your tendons, and make your skin more sensitive to the sun.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
4.41Levaquin
Reviews for Levaquin
53%
of people (All ages) say Levaquin is worth it
40%
say it works well
31%
say it's a big hassle
Have you used Levaquin (levofloxacin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it

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Have you used Flagyl (metronidazole)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
LevaquinFlagyl
  • Nausea 7%
  • Headache 6%
  • Diarrhea 5%
  • Sleep difficulty 4%
  • Dizziness 3%
  • Consitpation 3%
  • Abdominal pain 2%
  • Vomiting 2%
  • Indigestion 2%
  • Rash 2%
More Levaquin 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
LevaquinFlagyl
Levaquin (Levofloxacin) is an antibiotic. 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
LevaquinFlagyl
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
LevaquinFlagyl
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Extended-release pill
  • Injection
Used for
LevaquinFlagyl
Risk factors for serious side effects
LevaquinFlagyl
  • Over 60 years of age
  • On long-term steroid use
  • Heart, kidney, or lung transplant
  • History of liver disease
  • Seizures
Detailed Levaquin (levofloxacin) 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 found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

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

Interactions
LevaquinFlagyl
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
LevaquinFlagyl
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
LevaquinFlagyl
No food related info.
  • 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
LevaquinFlagyl
  • 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
LevaquinFlagyl
  • If you notice redness/inflammation, pain or swelling in your joints or muscles, especially in the Achilles tendon, contact your doctor immediately.
  • Talk to your doctor immediately if you start to feel burning, tingling, numbness, pain or you can't tolerate heat or cold. This could be a sign of nerve damage. It can happen as soon as you start taking the medication and may not go away if you stop it.
  • If you notice pain in your Achilles tendons, contact your doctor.
No pain related info.
Upsides and benefits
LevaquinFlagyl
  • Available in generic.
  • Available in different forms: tablet, capsule, and suspension.
  • 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.
  • 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
LevaquinFlagyl
  • Must be used with caution in people over 60 years of age, or who have had either an organ transplant or on long-term steroid use due to possible tendon rupture.
  • Levofloxacin can make your skin more sensitive to the sun.
  • Can't be used if you've ever had myasthenia gravis.
  • You have to space out any medications with aluminum, magnesium or zinc by at least 2 hours.
  • Can cause changes in taste, headaches, and insomnia.
  • 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
LevaquinFlagyl
  • If you notice pain in your Achilles tendons, contact your doctor.
  • Wear sunscreen if you're going to be out in the sun.
  • Take the medication exactly how the doctor tells you to.
  • Take this medication with plenty of fluids.
  • Space out any medications containing aluminum, magnesium or zinc by at least 2 hours.
  • Can cause diarrhea, nausea or vomiting.
  • Can cause changes in taste, headaches and insomnia.
  • 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 LevaquinSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Levaquin (levofloxacin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about FlagylSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Flagyl (metronidazole)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it