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Azithromycin

Azithromycin

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By Medicover Hospitals / 29 Nov 2020
Home | Medicine | Azithromycin

What is Azithromycin?

Azithromycin is an antibiotic that fights with bacteria. These medicines are used to treat different infections that are caused by bacteria such as bronchitis, pneumonia and infections of skin, throat, sinuses, lungs, ears and reproductive organ.

  1. Azithromycin uses
  2. Azithromycin side effects
  3. Precautions
  4. Azithromycin warnings
  5. Frequently Asked Questions
  6. Citations

Azithromycin Uses:

These are used to treat various infections that are created by bacteria. But Azithromycin cannot be used to treat virus infections like cold and fever. It can be used with other antibiotics to treat certain infections like mycobacterium avium complex and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Also, Azithromycin is used to treat gastrointestinal infection, lung infection, whooping cough and infectious disease that are caused by ticks.

Azithromycin Side Effects:

If you have any of these following serious symptoms immediately contact your doctor for further assistance. In any case, due to Azithromycin if you get any kind of reactions in your body try avoiding it.

Common Azithromycin Side Effects:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Fever
  • Itching
  • Swelling of face
  • Yellowing of eyes
  • Loss of energy
  • Loss of appetite
Common Azithromycin Side Effects Pic: Common Azithromycin Side Effects

Serious Azithromycin Side Effects:

  • Liver problems
    • Weakness
    • Dark urine
    • Pale face
  • QT prolongation, it can cause irregular heartbeat
    • Chest pain
    • Gasping during sleep
    • Fainting
  • Allergic reactions
    • Breathlessness
    • Pale face
    • Hives
    • Skin reaction
  • Diarrhea
    • Fever
    • Stomach pain
    • Nausea
    • Reduced appetite
Serious Azithromycin Side Effects Pic: Serious Azithromycin Side Effects

A doctor advised you to take the medicines by seeing your problems and the benefits of this medicine are greater than the side effects. Majority of the people who use this medicine don’t show any side effects. Get medical help immediately if you get any serious Azithromycin side effects.

Precautions:

Before taking Azithromycin you can take advice from your Doctor about your medical history especially if you ever have liver disease, kidney disease and certain muscle disease. Sometimes it may increase your heartbeat i.e. QT prolongation. QT prolongation can cause irregular heartbeat and can show other symptoms like dizziness and fainting. The risk can be caused if you have certain medical conditions or taking other drugs that can cause you QT prolongation. If you have a low level of potassium or magnesium in blood then it may increase the risk of QT prolongation.
Avoid using Azithromycin if you have faced these problems:

  • If you ever got allergic.
  • If you got jaundice or liver problem after taking Azithromycin.
  • If you’re getting some reactions due to clarithromycin and telithromycin.

  • Inform your doctor if you have these problems:
    • Liver disease
    • Kidney disease
    • Myasthenia gravis
    • Heartbeat disorder
    • Low levels of potassium in the blood

    How to get rid of the side effects?

  • Nausea - Avoid eating spicy foods while taking Azithromycin. Try to have simple meals.
  • Diarrhea or Vomiting - Try drinking enough amount of water to avoid dehydration. Drink a small sip of warm water if you’re sick. Avoid using any other types of medicine for the treatment of diarrhea and vomiting.
  • Losing of appetite - Eat small meals for every 2-3 hour break. Try having nutritious snacks which are high in calories and protein
  • Headaches - Drink plenty of water. If you are facing a severe headache ask your doctor to prescribe you with pain killers.
  • Dizziness or Tired - While standing if you feel dizziness try getting up slowly and sit down slowly you can feel better. Still, if you feel dizziness then try lying down. Avoid smoking and consumption of alcohol.
  • Azithromycin is also used to treat lung infection that affects people with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). It is specially used for children to treat ear and chest infections. Azithromycin is available in various forms:
    Tablets | Capsules | Syrup | Eye drops

    How to take Azithromycin?

    Azithromycin comes in different forms like tablet, syrup and capsules. These tablets are taken with or without food once in a day for at least 1-5days. If the tablets are used for disseminated MAC infection then the Azithromycin tablets are taken without or with food weekly once. Zmax is taken usually in an empty stomach at least 1 hour before a meal or 2 hours after a meal. Try taking Azithromycin dose every day at the same time for avoiding any side effects. Follow the Doctor’s advice or the prescription before taking medicines. Take Azithromycin as prescribed don’t take more or less.

    If you are taking Azithromycin syrup shake it well before use. Use a dosing spoon or measuring cup for taking the correct amount of Azithromycin. Always rinse the measuring device in water before and after its use.

    If you’re using Azithromycin powder (Zithromax) in single-dose, try mixing it in water before taking the medication. 1 gram packet of Azithromycin should be mixed with ¼ cup of water and consume the entire thing immediately.

    After taking the medicine if you vomit within one hour consult your doctor immediately. The doctor will guide you on whether to take the next dose or not. You would feel better in a few days of treatment with Azithromycin. In any case, you don’t see any improvement then you can consult your doctor.

    Forms and Various strength

    Generic: Azithromycin (Tablet) – 250mg, 500mg and 600mg
    Brand: Zithromax (Tablet) - 250mg, 500mg

    If you are taking Azithromycin syrup shake it well before use. Use a dosing spoon or measuring cup for taking the correct amount of Azithromycin. Always rinse the measuring device in water before and after its use.

    If you’re using Azithromycin powder (Zithromax) in single-dose, try mixing it in water before taking the medication. 1 gram packet of Azithromycin should be mixed with ¼ cup of water and consume the entire thing immediately.

    After taking the medicine if you vomit within one hour consult your doctor immediately. The doctor will guide you on whether to take the next dose or not. You would feel better in a few days of treatment with Azithromycin. In any case, you don’t see any improvement then you can consult your doctor.

    Azithromycin Dose:

    Bronchitis: (Adult dosage – 18 years and older)
    An adult should take 500mg per day for 3 days. A doctor can also prescribe 500mg as a single dose on the first day and for the other two days, he may advise you to take 250mg.

    Sinusitis: (Adult dosage is 500mg per day for 3 days)
    Child dosage (6months to 17yrs) should take 10mg/kg of body weight once in a day for 3 days

    Skin infections:
    An adult should take 500mg per day for 3 days. Doctor can also prescribe 500mg as a single dose on the first day and for the other two days, he may advise you to take 250mg.

    Urethritis and Cervicitis:
    If you are not treating gonorrhoea then you can take 1 gram dose in a day. If you are treating gonorrheal infection than 2gram in a day.

    Ear infection:
    Child dosage (6month – 17 years) 30mg/kg of body weight as a single dose. The doctor may also prescribe 10mg for 3 days.

    Missed dose:

    Missing one or two-dose of Azithromycin won’t show any effect on your body. The skipped dose causes no problem. But with some medication, it won’t work if you don’t take the dosage on time. If you miss a dose some sudden chemical change may affect your body. In some cases, your doctor would advise you to take the prescribed medicine as soon as possible if you have missed the dose.

    Overdose:

    Overdose of a drug can be accidental. If you have taken more than the prescribed Azithromycin tablets there is a chance of getting a harmful effect on your body’s functions. Overdose of a medicine can lead to some medical emergency.

    Azithromycin Warnings:

    • Allergic reaction
    • Trouble breathing
    • Hives
    • Swelling of throat or tongue
    • Some severe skin reactions

    Don’t take this drug if you have any allergies, it may cause you serious medical conditions. Consult doctor immediately in such cases.

    Warnings for serious health conditions:

    Myasthenia Gravis:

    If any person has myasthenia gravis then the drugs may lead to some worse symptoms. Before taking Azithromycin consult your Doctor.

    Heart Problems:

    If any person is facing difficulty in breathing or they are facing some abnormal heartbeat called QT prolongation then taking this drug can increase the arrhythmia. Consult your Doctor.

    Pregnant women:

    Azithromycin is not evaluated for pregnant women. If a woman is using the drug during her pregnancy there is no such high risk of pregnancy loss, birth defects or any other problems. But to be on the safe side consult your Doctor before taking the medicine.

    Breastfeeding:

    Azithromycin passes into breast milk. It can cause some side effects to child’s who are breastfed. These can include diarrhea, vomiting and rash. Before taking Azithromycin while breastfeeding consult your doctor.

    Azithromycin Storage:

    Direct contact with heat, air and light may damage your medicines. The exposure of medicine may cause some harmful effects. The medicine must be kept in a safe place and out of children’s reach.

    Mainly the Azithromycin drug should be stored at room temperature between 68ºF and 77ºF (20ºC and 25ºC).

    Before taking Azithromycin consult your Doctor. In case you face any problems or get any side effects after taking Azithromycin, rush immediately to your nearby hospital or consult your doctor for better treatment. Carry your medications always in your bag while travelling to avoid any immediate emergencies. Follow your prescription and follow your Doctor advice whenever you take Azithromycin.

    Azithromycin vs Doxycycline:

    Azithromycin
    Doxycycline
    Azithromycin is Macrolide antibiotic Doxycycline is Tetracycline antibiotic
    Side effects of Azithromycin are Rash, nervousness, tongue discoloration and indigestion Side effects of doxycycline are tooth discolouration and exaggerated sunburn
    It is used for the treatment of infections that are caused by bacteria such as bronchitis, pneumonia and infections of skin, throat, sinuses, lungs, ears and reproductive organ It is used for the treatment of acne, syphilis, periodontal disease, non-gonoccal urethritis and cholera
    Azithromycin should not be taken with any other antibiotics without the consultation of Doctor Doxycycline should not be taken with any other antibiotics without the consultation of Doctor

    Frequently Asked Questions:

    Azithromycin is an antibiotic that fights bacteria. These medicines are used to treat different infections that are caused by bacteria such as bronchitis, pneumonia and infections of skin, throat, sinuses, lungs, ears and reproductive organs.
    The side effects of Azithromycin are Diarrhea, Nausea, Abdominal pain, Vomiting, Headache, Dizziness, Fainting, Fever, Itching and lung infections.
    Azithromycin is not evaluated for pregnant women. If a woman is using the drug during her pregnancy there is no such high risk of pregnancy loss, birth defects or any other problems. But to be on the safe side consult your Doctor before taking the medicine.
    Azithromycin is an antibiotic that fights with bacteria. It is used to treat lung infection that affects people with human immunodeficiency virus(HIV).
    Azithromycin is good for sore throat and throat infection as it fights bacteria.
    Azithromycin are not used for curing fever. These are only used for treating different infections that are caused by bacteria such as bronchitis, pneumonia and infections of skin, throat, sinuses, lungs, ears and reproductive organs.
    Azithromycin are not used for curing a cold. These are only used for treating different infections that are caused by bacteria such as bronchitis, pneumonia and infections of skin, throat, sinuses, lungs, ears and reproductive organs.
    No, azithromycin is not a sulfa drug. Sulfonamide antibiotics are a sulfa drug.
    Azithromycin is not used for curing fever. These are only used for treating different infections that are caused by bacteria such as bronchitis, pneumonia and infections of skin, throat, sinuses, lungs, ears and reproductive organs.

    Citations:

  • Azithromycin, https://link.springer.com/article/10.2165/00003495-199856020-00014
  • Azithromycin for Prevention of Exacerbations of COPD , https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1104623
  • Clarithromycin and azithromycin: new macrolide antibiotics, https://europepmc.org/article/med/1312921