Azithromycin is an antibiotic prescription drug given to adults 18 years or older to treat certain infections caused by bacteria. These bacterial infections are:
— Acute worsening of chronic bronchitis
— Community-acquired pneumonia
— Acute sinus infection
— Skin infections
— Infected throat or tonsils
— Genital ulcers in men
— Infections of the urethra or cervix
It is also effective in children to treat:
- Community-acquired pneumonia
- Ear infections
- Infected throat or tonsils
Azithromycin should not be used by people who can’t tolerate oral medicines because they are extremely ill along with certain other risk factors, including:
- Have hospital-acquired infections
- Have cystic fibrosis
- Need to be in the hospital
- Have known or suspected bacteria in the blood
- Are elderly
- Have a health issue that can reduce the ability of the immune system to fight against infections
Azithromycin is not effective for viral infections such as the common cold. It is not known if the medicine is safe and effective in treating genital ulcers in women. Also, it is unknown if Azithromycin is safe and effective for kids with sinus infections, ear infections, and community-acquired pneumonia. The safety and effectiveness have not been established in children under 2 years of age with infected throat or tonsils.
Strengths available for Azithromycin
Azithromycin is available under the brand name Azee in the following strengths:
- Azee 500 mg
- Azee 250 mg
- Azee DT 100 mg
- Azee 1000 mg
Who should not take the Azithromycin antibiotic?
- Avoid taking this drug if you have had a severe allergic reaction to certain macrolides or ketolides.
- Have a history of cholestatic jaundice or liver impairment that happened with the use of this medicine.
What should I inform my healthcare provider before taking Azithromycin?
Before you take this medicine, inform your healthcare provider if you have
- Cystic fibrosis
- Liver or kidney problems
- Problems that give rise to muscle weakness
- Bacterial infections in the bloodstream
- Irregular heartbeat
- Any other medical concerns
- Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is still not understood if Azithromycin will harm your unborn baby.
- Are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. The antibiotic medicine has been reported to pass into breast milk. Speak to your healthcare professional about the best way to feed your baby while you take Azithromycin.
Speak to your healthcare provider straight away if you are giving Azithromycin to a young kid.
Azithromycin and other drugs may affect each other, causing side effects. It may affect the way other drugs function and other drugs may affect how Azithromycin works.
Especially tell your healthcare specialist if you take digoxin, nelfinavir, phenytoin, a blood thinner, and an antacid that contains magnesium or aluminum.
How should I use Azithromycin?
Taking an antibiotic under the health care provider's guidance is the best way to prevent antibiotic resistance. Do not discontinue treatment even if you start to feel better until you complete your prescribed course unless you have a serious allergic reaction or your health care professional tells you to stop taking Azithromycin. Generally, this medicine can be taken without regard to food. If the bacteria become resistant to Azithromycin, Azithromycin and other antibiotic drugs may not work for you.
Side effects of Azithromycin
Serious allergic reactions in people taking Azithromycin even after only one dose. Discontinue treatment and take immediate medical help straight away if you develop any of the following severe allergic reactions:
- Swelling of the face, tongue, and lips
- Skin rash
- Throat tightness, hoarseness
- Trouble breathing and swallowing
- Onset of swollen lymph nodes
Other side effects include:
- Liver damage - Liver damage can occur in people who take Azithromycin. Take immediate medical help if you have unexplained symptoms such as nausea/vomiting, weakness, fever, itching, loss of appetite, dark-colored urine, a change in the color of your bowel movements, unusual tiredness, abdominal pain or tenderness, and stomach pain.
- Serious heart rhythm changes - Take immediate medical help if you have a fast or irregular heartbeat or feel faint and dizzy. This condition can be life-threatening. The chances are higher in people who are elderly, people with low blood potassium, or who take certain drugs to control heart rhythm.
- Worsening of a muscle problem - The antibiotic medicine may cause worsening of myasthenia gravis, causing muscle weakness and breathing issues. Speak to your healthcare professional immediately if you have worsening muscle weakness or breathing issues.
- Diarrhea - Be sure to inform your health care provider if you have watery diarrhea, diarrhea that doesn’t resolve, or bloody stools. You may develop cramping and a fever. This can happen after you have completed your treatment course.
The most commonly reported side effects of Azithromycin include nausea, vomiting, and stomach pain. These are not all the possible side effects; for information, consult your doctor.