Rifampicin

Please note: This is for information only.

Refer to local guidelines for treatment recommendations


  • Antituberculosis drug.
  • Bactericidal.
  • Adult dose – varies according to indication.
  • Dosage adjustment may be necessary in severe renal impairment
  • Eliminated in bile therefore adjust dose if liver impairment (maximum 8mg/kg/day).
  • Monitor LFTs and withdraw the drug if clinically significant changes in liver function during therapy.
  • Penetrates into CSF
  • An enzyme inducer therefore numerous drug interactions (including oral contraceptives).
  • Resistance develops quickly if used as monotherapy to treat systemic infections.

Main indications:

  • Treatment of tuberculosis and leprosy as part of combination therapy.
  • Treatment of serious Staphylococcal infections (eg endocarditis, epidural abscess)
  • To eliminate carriage of N meningitidis and H influenzae B in asymptomatic patients who have been in close contact with a patient with meningitis caused by those bugs.

Active against most strains of:

  • Neisseria meningitidis
  • Haemophilus influenzae
  • Staphylococcus aureus – including MRSA

Not active against most strains of:

  • Coliforms
  • Pseudomonas