My Doctor Said Cipro Didn't Cause Muscle Pain and Weakness, and No Long Term Side Effects

by Dan
(Phoenix, AZ)

I had a potential UTI, doctor gave me cipro for 2 weeks 500mg 2x daily. I've never been on antibiotics but almost everyone I know has, so I didn't think much of it. I did read the insert but it made it seem like it was extremely rare and nowhere did it say long term damage. After day 2 started having extreme pain in my arms and wrists, and weakness in my knees and ankles.

I stopped and called the doc, he seemed surprised and told me cipro doesn't do that to keep taking it. I asked him if there were any long term risks and he said "no". so I continued taking it in hopes of clearing up my UTI (Which was a bothersome, but didn't impact my life) The pain increased but I knew I needed to keep taking it.

Fast forward 3+ months later and still have weakness and pains throughout my body, and more intense in my right leg and left arm/hand. I'm a computer programmer and havent been productive since I got cipro, its hard to type for long periods of time.

I have DI from my work but how do I get on it when no doctor will recognize cipro side effects?


Joshua Answers:

Hi Dan.

It wasn't even a confirmed UTI, much less a confirmed bacterial infection?

I don't usually say this, but you should sue the shit out of that doctor and hospital.

There is a BLACK BOX WARNING of the side effects (tendon pain, tendon rupture, swelling, inflammation, pain) right on the box, he should know that.

If that doctor spent 60 seconds educating himself about the drugs he is giving out he'd know that those are the side effects of fluoroquinolone antibiotics like Cipro: muscle pain, tendon pain, muscle fatigue, muscle spasm/cramp/twitch, anxiety, confusion, brain fog, tendon damage, etc.

It's super tough to sue a doctor for giving an antibiotic for a non-bacterial infection, because that's approved by the AMA and is 'standard of care'.

Hospital medicine relies so much on, and has so much blind trust in antibiotics that they prescribe it all day long because -maybe- it will help, and often does even when it technically shouldn't.

But the fact that your doctor told you to keep taking Cipro when it says right on the box to stop taking it if side effects are experienced (and any barely-better-than-decent doctor knows you should stop taking something if
you get significant side effects).

You asked if there was any danger of long term side effects and he said 'no'??? WTF? Are you sure that guy was a doctor?

So maybe you won't win a Cipro lawsuit, but I'm giving that doctor the 'MY DOCTOR'S SMOKING CRACK' award. Because that doctor is smoking crack.

Unfortunately getting mad at him isn't going to help anything on any level. You need to focus on getting better.

Which looks like finding a doctor that understands Cipro and Fluoroquinolone and is willing to say that that Cipro caused your symptoms, and getting started with The Levaquin Tendonitis Solution program (now The Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Solution).

You need to find another doctor -anyway-, because that doctor shouldn't be practicing medicine.

As far as disability, you need to find a doctor that is willing to state that your side effects are from the Cipro. Most doctors won't, for a variety of reasons, including they don't want to admit that something they and their peers give out out a daily basis might actually do some harm. Plus they don't want to admit legal liability.

So you're going to have to shop around some. Alternative medicine like a naturopathic doctor, maybe a good regular doctor.

The tough part with legal action and a lawsuit is 'proving' that the cipro caused it. And there is no proof that I know of. But in front of a jury with all the evidence, the jury can see what's what.

The medical and legal system is rigged against you, but more people need to sue their hospitals and the makers of fluoroquinolones if they're ever going to be taken off the shelves (or at least only used for life threatening situations).

Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.

And, comments have a 3,000 character limit so you may have to comment twice.

Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert

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Comments for My Doctor Said Cipro Didn't Cause Muscle Pain and Weakness, and No Long Term Side Effects

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Mar 19, 2015
Is Cipro Attacking my Old Sprains?
by: Carol J

Fifty years ago I sprained my right knee and 30 or so years later my left ankle. I have no idea what meds I have been on all these years, but the knee and ankle, probably bursitis, have flared up occasionally. I was diagnosed with "housemaid's knee" in 1999. Since then my knee and ankle eventually "healed" but when I overuse them. the pain recurs.

Two years ago, I was misdiagnosed with a kidney infection and given Cipro. I had many side effects, but the doctor insisted I take the full dose, just in case.

Since then, I have had extreme pain in my knee and ankle which in spite of physical therapy, ace bandages and other support and recently, rest, which has not eased. One doctor, diagnosed me with patella femoral syndrome.

Physical therapists put me on exercises that seemed to strain my knee especially. but they insisted no pain no gain.

Years ago I had a torn rotator cuff which was treated with ultra sound, stretching exercises and ice, that actually healed so I didn't need surgery!

I insisted they do the same in spite of the fact that they said there was no proof that ultra sound worked. After the proscribed treatments I agreed I was 70% improved, However, after doing the home exercises they had recommended post treatment, the pain actually got worse. I am convinced it was the ultra sound that made the difference.

Lately, my primary care doctor, who is a young mother and marathon runner said the physical therapy was not what would help tendinitis, I needed to rest. I keep trying to rest, but I had arrhythmia and chest pains that sent me to the hospital. Everything tested normal, but I have wondered if I have indigestion due to gastroperensis.(sp)

Recently, my gums began bleeding leading me to have to undergo periodontal treatment in one quadrant. Surprisingly, my knee and ankle seem to become more painful, in spite of all the resting. Because I was concerned the amoxicillin that had been prescribed for infection may have acted like cipro, I found your web site and am looking for help. I will be 78 in June and would like to be as active as I was a few years ago before the cipro.


Joshua Answers:

Hi Carol.

1. "I had many side effects, but the doctor insisted I take the full dose, just in case. "

One could easily argue that that doctor should be sued (not that that's an enjoyable process). Cipro comes with an FDA warning label, and that doctor is acting entirely negligently by advising you to continue taking the Cipro when you report side effects from it.

2. "Lately, my primary care doctor, ...... said the physical therapy was not what would help tendinitis, I needed to rest. "

Unfortunately, rest is a poor prescription to counter the side effects of cipro.

Cipro depletes the body of magnesium. You need to get magnesium INTO your body. And Vitamin D. (I suspect the long term lack of both of those have a lot to do with your chronic knee/ankle pain.

Vitamin D and Magnesium are required to utilize calcium, and insufficiency in one or both is why this nation has such an osteoporosis problem.

3. Pain is a stressor. The body eats up magnesium to deal with all types of stressors. So the procedure caused your body to use up magneisum, and without that in your body other things started to hurt. That makes perfect sense.

4. How are you doing now. Give us an update and we'll go from there.

Mar 22, 2015
My Cipro for UTI story
by: Anonymous

I went to see doc for a UTI. they prescribed Cipro twice a day.. 500mgs I believe.

I took Cipro for five days..

By third day I noticed my ankles were swelling, but did not put it together.. By day five I could barely walk. Two years later now and I have major tendonitis all over my body elbows, shoulders, etc.

I am in constant pain.

Aug 05, 2015
Took cipro for uti last week and now legs, feet, ankles, shoulders and arms are hurting
by: Judy

I was prescribed cipro for a uti. After taking 5 (250 mg) pills my leg started to hurt very, very bad.

Prior to that my feet had been burning.

I called the doctor about the leg pain and all he said was if you can tolerate it continue to take the meds.

I did not take anymore. After a long night of pain I tried heat and that seem to help.

The next day my ankles were hurting. There is soreness in my calves, pain in knees, both legs, shoulders and arms.

I also have tingling and burning sensations in all of these areas and also my feet.

I went to the doctor today and he just ignored my complaints. Basically said the medicine would not have caused this. I am very concerned because this is not going away.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Judy.

I'm sorry to hear that.

1. Find a different doctor. Those are all known and 'common' side effects of Fluoroquinolones like Cipro, and the FDA required black label warning (that that doctor is unaware of???) warns to stop taking if side effects show up.

Which is common sense for any drug, that doctors should care enough to be aware of.

2. It's a good thing you stopped. If you have symptoms from a little, taking more isn't going to help anything.

3. Cipro side effects are bad news. If you do nothing, side effects will generally either go away in a year or less......or they won't (meaning, long lasting and get worse over time).

Either way, I'd get to work giving your body what it needs to have a better chance at a (faster) recovery.

How are you feeling now?

See Related: Cipro Saga Anxiety Overwelmed Muscle Pain Burning Ringing In The Ears Etc All The Classic Cipro Side Effects

See Related: Chance Of Recovering From Ciprofloxacin Side Effects

Feb 17, 2016
My Cipro/UTI downslide
by: Debbie

9/5/2012 UTI. Went to the doctor and he prescribed Cipro. Asked why Cipro since I've never had it before. "Because it works better"

Got the pills. 20 tabs, 500mg 2X's a day.

A few days in I felt really weird,the bones in my toes hurt sooo bad. Was going to just suck it up and finish all the pills.

9/8/2012 I couldn't deal with it anymore and called the doctor and got a different drug.

I believe I took approx. 6-7 pills of Cipro.
One month later I hurt my ankle doing yard work. I thought I just sprained my ankle. Next month my achilles started to hurt. Was confused as to why I had pain in my achilles.

Went to physical therapy that didn't help much.

9/2013 I was reading an article by Dr. Mercola about "Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics May Cause Permanent Nerve Damage". I pretty much freaked out reading this. Took some chlorella pills for 3 weeks just to be safe.

Meanwhile I was having constant leg/feet/toe spasms nightly.(I didn't connect it to cipro until a few weeks ago) Many nights I would be up 5-7 times with horrific spasms. My sleep was greatly deprived.

I tried extra mg. drinking more water, stretching,tonic water, etc. Nothing seemed to help. I knew something was not right in my body but had no idea what.

Fast forward to 3/2015. Looong winter here in upstate NY. Wasn't able to get out as the snow was too deep. After no activity for a few months I was out of shape.

Decided I was going to trim the apple trees regardless. I over did. I was hungry and couldn't get full no matter how much I ate. Got really shaky,weak. Went to the ER twice.

My Dr. wanted me to take anti anxiety/depression meds. I refused because I was not depressed. I was in a constant state of hunger with this shaky feeling that went away after eating but the hunger came back 1/2 hour later.

I saw an endocrinologist and had blood work that was all normal.

My toes go numb at night. Had a nerve conductor test and that was normal. Meanwhile I'm going crazy wondering what is wrong with me.

I finally started to get a bit stronger and was getting better but not great. So I decided to have cataract surgery Aug.4,2015. 3 Doc's cleared me for the surgery. A simple 10 minute procedure. Was so excited to have better vision(I have retinitis pigmentosa)

They tried to give me the Ofloxacin eye drops even though they knew I was allergic to cipro.

I said I refused to take any of those group of drugs. Got different eye drops. Had the surgery. One day later I'm starving and shaky again. I saw clearly for 2 weeks and then my eye clouded over worse than before the surgery.

During that time a light bulb went off in my head that the leg cramps could be related to the Cipro I took.

All the health issues I've had seemed to fit together in that time frame. I'm not positive I'm on the right track but it all seems to make sense.

Right now I am so weak and tired, anxious and frustrated. My leg muscles are sore and the leg cramps still keep me awake most nights.

I don't understand why I am so much more worse now than in 2012-2014.

I have more Doctors appt. next month. In my heart I feel I'm wasting my time with these appt. but need to rule things out.

The medical industry made me sick and they can't make me better. I'm so scared but realized I am better than lots of people.

I know it's going to take time to get better.

I'm seeing an integrative Doctor who actually "believes" me. He even believed me about the possibility of cipro toxicity. Only problem I only see him every 3 months.

I went to our Nature Tyme store for a free consult. I've started on a candida detox 1 week ago. And have been taking Chlorella pills(2100 mg.)for 2 weeks now.

I still feel so weak, hungry, tired, ringing in the ears, muscle spasms at night and have been having anxiety/panic attacks among other symptoms.

I eat a very clean diet. All organic, local grass-fed meat/eggs with no soy. I don't eat sugar, caffeine, alcohol, chocolate, gluten, no processed foods, no fruit except banana.

I make my own milk kefir, kombucha, mayonnaise, dressing.

I take supplements and with all this I still don't feel well. This has been going on for 7-8 months. I need to get my life back. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.



Joshua Comments:

Hi Debbie.

Thanks for all the details. And I'm sorry to hear about all that.

Your dietary intake looks pretty great. Just the no gluten and no sugar, that's in general a huge step towards helping your body be health.

Kefir is very smart, organic is very smart. Good.

And, you're suffering from the progressive mechanism that results in the body from Fluoroquinolones like Cipro.

Much of what you describe are symptoms of Mangesium insufficency.

Cipro depletes magnesium (among other things).

Be it months that have passed or years, the body can't heal not because it doesn't want to, but because it doesn't have enough of the basic building blocks that are required for it the body to function as well as it can/should.

Cipro and it's sibling fluoroquinolones like Avelox and Levofloxacin and Levaquin and Ciprofloxacin etc kick off a chain reation in the body. Initial negatives of taking it starts with nutritional depletion and gets worse from there, potentially killing off mitochondria (causing tendon damage) and potentially DNA damage locally to connective tissue structures like but not limited to tendons).

Then the Cipro is basically done. But the effects are left in the body, and the body is stuck not being able to work right, not being able to recover.

Time isn't likely to heal things. In my experience people (without doing anything in particular to get better) either get better within a year, or they don't.

And if they don't, that's a sign that their body can't, without the right help.

The good news is, it sounds like you don't have any tendons falling apart, joint structure falling apart, etc. That's really good news.


1. How are things now?

2. What did the Integrative doctor have you do?

Sep 30, 2016
Cipro - This drug should be banned world wide
by: Anonymous

Hi There, I just wanted to share my experience with Ciprofloxacin.

I was prescribed Cipro for a scalp infection. I had done some research on Cipro after getting the prescription filled and noticed that it had more side effects than other antibiotics.

Against my better judgement I have taken only part of one pill, approx 200 milligrams, at around 7:00 in the evening before dinner. After about one hour I started to have some trouble swallowing my food during dinner.

Muscle weakness started around 10 pm It is mid morning now and I can not sleep. Another side effect.

My forearms and wrists feel weak. I hope I haven't done any long term damage to myself. I have stopped taking Cipro and will never take it again. My ability to swallow properly seems to have returned. Thank God.

Hopefully after only ingesting 200 milligrams, I should be able to make a full recovery.

This is a horrible drug. I feel sorry for all of you out there that have suffered long term problems from Cipro use. I wish all of you a speedy recovery. :)

Nov 08, 2016
by: Anonymous

I was given cipro for a kidney infection at the ER. 3 days later went to ENT doc I knew something was wrong with me. I could hardly move or walk. Hurt all over entire body. Legs and feet so swollen up. felt like i was literally dying.

I was also crying i hurt so bad. and he told me i must take the entire bottle of cipro and do not stop taking it.

I took the entire bottle except 3 pills. I continued to get worse and ended up losing my career with the fed gov for almost 30 years. I had never been sick in my life. Seen over 30 diff docs in the first year. not one believed me or helped me.

I have PN (peripheral neuropathy) and have little use left in my hands. they hurt and are so numb constantly. it literally hurts so bad i cant even pick up a brush to comb my hair. i cant stand up long enough to take a shower.

A year later as i was gathering up my docs summary of visits for my disability the notes from the ENT i went to 3 days after i started the cipro had wrote: "Pt says she is in pain and hurts all over. Something is not right with her body. THE AURA TELLS ME NO!" i told her to keep taking the cipro until finished.

I tested positive for EBV (epstein barr virus) and was told i was at the end stage of mono. Tested positive for RA. Next blood test said Negative for RA.

When i had the nerve conduction tests i could not even finish the shock test because of pain like nothing i ever felt in my entire life. It was like on raw nerves shocking them. Couldnt move for over a week later.

Called 3 days after to ask neuro for pain medication and was told no way i should hurt from that test.

I hate my life. it is not worth this. Don't even have a life. been 3 years now. after lost job lost insurance so didn't see any doctor for over a year.

I haven't taken ANY of the over 30 diff medications i have been given. all of it is poison. its ironic the same gov that knowingly gives out this poison to cripple healthy people denies you social security you paid into all your life because not one doctor out there will put 2 and 2 together that cipro did this to me or even consider listening to my story i was fine my entire life until 3 days after starting cipro.

I have suffered every day since. Not one doctor would give me anything for pain except for one time... i have been given ONE shot of toradol for pain this entire time.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Anonymous.

1. It's not a bad thing you didn't take any of the 30 prescribed medications...they wouldn't have helped.

2. I'm no lawyer but there's a FDA mandated black box warning on Cipro that says to discontinue if side effects. Your doctor should have been aware of that and obligated to heed the warning. You may want to consider suing for malpractice.

Unfortunately, you likely don't have any case against any of the other doctors..just the one that prescribed the Cipro and then told you to continue when you presented side effect complains.

3. I don't have anything nice to say about all those doctors that didn't believe you and didn't put forth the slightest amount of effort to help you figure things out.

Any one of them could have spent ten minutes investigating fluoroquinolones to find out the symptoms, the side effects, and the numbers of people affected.

But the medical profession isn't interested in acknowledging that a drug the prescribe by the millions can and does actually hurt people.

4. How to get better?

YOU MUST replete the nutrition in your body that the Cipro and resulting pain depleted.

There is no getting around this. This is your only path towards improvement. No medication, no drug, no physical therapy, can fix cipro side effects, because a main mechanism of cipro is to massively deplete nutrition.

Until you fill up that hole, your body has little to no chance of recovery.

You'll need to get the Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Solution program, and various supplements suggested in the program, and join the forum that comes with the program for support etc.

Did any of your doctors do testing that included your Vitamin D level? If so, what is it? If you don't know, find out.

Sep 07, 2018
Leg pain after Cipro
by: Anonymous

I was prescribed cipro 500 mg twice a day for 30 days for a UTI.

All went well, then 3 or 4 months later the UTI came back. My Doctor again prescribed 500 mg cipro twice daily for 30 days.

He told me to look out for sore tendons in my ankles. After I had taken 29 days of cipro my legs started to hurt, and cramp. This leg pain has gotten worse in the month since I finished the cipro. I can bearly stand up when seated. I can not stand up for more than a few minutes, and walking hurts so bad that I bearly get around.

If I'm sitting down the pain is less, but when I try to stand the pain is really bad. Does the amount of cipro I was prescribed seem high?

What can I do to stop the pain?


Joshua Comments:

"Does the amount of cipro I was prescribed seem high? "

Only doctors get to have an opinion about that...

Having said that, A. it didn't work and B. you're suffering significant side effects from it and C. the doctor didn't fix the reason you keep having UTI's (poor immune system function, for instance).

"What can I do to stop the pain?"

Hopefully your symptoms are just from the massive magnesium depletion all the cipro caused.

So you could just take magnesium, and enough of it...but even then there's more to the story than 'just take magnesium'. And if you also are suffering mitochondrial damage.....

That's why I always recommend that people suffering from cipro side effects get and start seriously working with the Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Solution.

This is serious business, you need a serious plan of attack.

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