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n. any one of a group of semisynthetic beta-lactam antibiotics, derived from the mould Cephalosporium, which are effective against a wide range of microorganisms and are therefore used in a variety of infections. The older (first-generation) cephalosporins include cefadroxil and cefalexin; more recent (second-generation) drugs include cefaclor, cefuroxime, and cefotaxime. Third-generation cephalosporins, such as ceftazidime, cefotaxime, cefpodoxime (Orelox), and ceftriaxone (Rocephin), have greater activity against Gram-negative bacteria. Cross-sensitivity with penicillin may occur and the principal side-effects are allergic reactions and irritation of the digestive tract.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.

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