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Generic name: azithromycin 


 Brand names

In the U.S.

  • Zithromax
  • Zithromax Tri-Pak
  • Zithromax Z-Pak
  • Zmax

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Powder for Suspension, Extended Release
  • Tablet
  • Powder for Suspension

Therapeutic Class: Antibiotic

Chemical Class: Macrolide

Azithromycin uses


Azithromycin can be used for treating specific bacteria-related infections that occur in a variety of organs. Azithromycin can help to reduce or eliminate the symptoms of syphilis infection. It’s not effective against syphilis infection.

Azithromycin belongs to the category of drugs referred to by the name macrolide antimicrobials. It kills bacteria or stops their growth. However, azithromycin does not be effective against colds, flu, or any other viruses¹.

Azithromycin is only available through the prescription of your physician.

Before taking azithromycin, be sure to consult your doctor.

When deciding whether to take any medicine, the dangers of using the medication must be evaluated against the benefits it can do. This is a decision that you as well as your doctor make. For azithromycin, these factors should be taken into consideration:


Discuss with your physician whether you’ve had an unusual reaction or allergy to azithromycin or other medication. Be sure to inform your physician whether you suffer from any other kinds of allergies, for instance, to dyes, foods preservatives, animals, or dyes. For non-prescription medications, review the label or the ingredient list carefully.


Studies that are appropriate have not been conducted on the relation of age to the effect of azithromycin for sinusitis treatment for children. It is also used in treating the condition of pneumonia in infants younger than 6 months old. The safety and effectiveness of azithromycin have not been proven.

Studies that are appropriate have not been conducted to determine the connection between age and the effects of azithromycin tablets and oral suspension for treating pharyngitis and tonsillitis in children less than 2 years old. The safety and effectiveness of azithromycin have not been proven.



Studies that are appropriate so far have not revealed specific geriatric issues that could hinder the effectiveness of azithromycin for the elderly. However, older patients tend to be more susceptible to heart rhythm issues (eg the torsades of points) which could warrant caution for patients taking azithromycin.


There aren’t enough studies of women that can determine the risks to babies when using this medication while breastfeeding. Consider the benefits and the risk of taking this medication when nursing.

Interactions with medications

While certain medications should not be taken together, however, there are instances where two different medications can be taken together, even if interactions could occur. In these instances, the doctor may decide to alter the dosage or take other precautions if needed. When you take azithromycin, it’s important to let your doctor be aware of if you’re having any other drugs that are listed below. These interactions have been determined based on their potential importance and may not be all-inclusive.

Utilizing azithromycin in conjunction in conjunction with any of the following drugs is not recommended. Your doctor might decide to not treat you with this drug or alter any other medication you are taking.

  • Bepridil
  • Cisapride
  • Dihydroergotamine
  • Dronedarone
  • Ergoloid Mesylates
  • Ergonovine
  • Ergotamine
  • Methylergonovine
  • Methysergide
  • Pimozide
  • Piperaquine
  • Saquinavir
  • Sparfloxacin
  • Terfenadine
  • Thioridazine
  • Ziprasidone

Utilizing azithromycin in conjunction together with any of these medicines is not usually advised, however it may be necessary in some instances. If both medications are prescribed in conjunction and your doctor recommends a change in the dosage or the frequency at which you take one or both medications.

  • Acecainide
  • Alfuzosin
  • Amiodarone
  • Amisulpride
  • Amitriptyline
  • Amoxapine
  • Anagrelide
  • Apomorphine
  • Aripiprazole
  • Aripiprazole Lauroxil
  • Arsenic Trioxide
  • Asenapine
  • Astemizole
  • Azimilide
  • Bretylium
  • Buprenorphine
  • Buserelin
  • Ceritinib
  • Chloroquine
  • Chlorpromazine
  • Cholera Vaccine, Live
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Citalopram
  • Clarithromycin
  • Clofazimine
  • Clomipramine
  • Clozapine
  • Crizotinib
  • Dabrafenib
  • Dasatinib
  • Degarelix
  • Delamanid
  • Desipramine
  • Deslorelin
  • Deutetrabenazine
  • Digoxin
  • Disopyramide
  • Dofetilide
  • Dolasetron
  • Domperidone
  • Donepezil
  • Doxorubicin
  • Doxorubicin Hydrochloride Liposome
  • Droperidol
  • Edoxaban
  • Efavirenz
  • Encorafenib
  • Entrectinib
  • Erythromycin
  • Escitalopram
  • Fexinidazole
  • Fingolimod
  • Flecainide
  • Fluconazole
  • Fluoxetine
  • Formoterol
  • Foscarnet
  • Fostemsavir
  • Gatifloxacin
  • Gemifloxacin
  • Glasdegib
  • Gonadorelin
  • Goserelin
  • Granisetron
  • Halofantrine
  • Haloperidol
  • Histrelin
  • Hydroxychloroquine
  • Hydroxyzine
  • Ibutilide
  • Iloperidone
  • Imipramine
  • Inotuzumab Ozogamicin
  • Ivabradine
  • Ivosidenib
  • Ketoconazole
  • Lapatinib
  • Lefamulin
  • Lenvatinib
  • Levofloxacin
  • Lofexidine
  • Lopinavir
  • Lumefantrine
  • Macimorelin
  • Mefloquine
  • Methadone
  • Metronidazole
  • Mifepristone
  • Mirtazapine
  • Mobocertinib
  • Morphine
  • Morphine Sulfate Liposome
  • Moxifloxacin
  • Nafarelin
  • Nilotinib
  • Norfloxacin
  • Nortriptyline
  • Octreotide
  • Ofloxacin
  • Ondansetron
  • Osilodrostat
  • Osimertinib
  • Oxaliplatin
  • Ozanimod
  • Paliperidone
  • Panobinostat
  • Pasireotide
  • Pazopanib
  • Pentamidine
  • Pimavanserin
  • Pitolisant
  • Pixantrone
  • Ponesimod
  • Posaconazole
  • Procainamide
  • Prochlorperazine
  • Promethazine
  • Propafenone
  • Protriptyline
  • Quetiapine
  • Quinidine
  • Quinine
  • Ranolazine
  • Ribociclib
  • Selpercatinib
  • Sematilide
  • Sertraline
  • Sevoflurane
  • Simvastatin
  • Siponimod
  • Sodium Phosphate
  • Sodium Phosphate, Dibasic
  • Sodium Phosphate, Monobasic
  • Solifenacin
  • Sorafenib
  • Sotalol
  • Sulpiride
  • Sunitinib
  • Tacrolimus
  • Tedisamil
  • Telithromycin
  • Tetrabenazine
  • Toremifene
  • Trazodone
  • Triclabendazole
  • Trifluoperazine
  • Trimipramine
  • Triptorelin
  • Vandetanib
  • Vardenafil
  • Vemurafenib
  • Vinflunine
  • Voclosporin
  • Voriconazole
  • Warfarin
  • Zuclopenthixol

Azithromycin when used in conjunction with one of the listed medicines could increase the chance of experiencing certain adverse consequences, but taking both medications could be the most effective treatment for you. If both medications are prescribed and your doctor recommends a change in the dosage or the frequency you take either or both medications.

  • Atorvastatin
  • Lovastatin
  • Nelfinavir
  • Rifabutin
  • Theophylline

Interactions with alcohol, tobacco, or food

Certain medications are not recommended to be taken at or near the time of having food items or eating particular kinds of food as interactions could happen. Smoking or drinking alcohol in conjunction together with certain medications can result in interactions. Talk to your doctor about the interactions of your medication in conjunction with alcohol, food, or tobacco.

Other medical issues

The presence of medical conditions can affect the effectiveness of azithromycin. Be sure to inform your physician if you suffer from any other medical issues particularly:

  • Allergies to any macrolide or ketolide antibiotic
  • Liver disease that has been treated with azithromycin prior to treatment, or history of being utilized in patients with this condition.
  • Bacteremia (blood infection) 
  • Cystic Fibrosis 
  • Infections, nosocomial, hospital-acquired
  • Weak immune system 
  • Physical weakness should not be utilized in patients suffering from the conditions mentioned above to treat pneumonia.
  • Bradycardia (slow heartbeat) 
  • Congestive heart failure 
  • Diarrhea 
  • Heart disease 
  • History of heart rhythm issues (eg QT prolongation bradyarrhythmias and torsades)
  • Uncorrected Hypokalemia (low potassium levels in the blood)
  • Uncorrected Hypomagnesemia (low magnesium levels in the blood) 
  • Myasthenia Gravis (severe muscles weakness)–Use with cautiousness. This can cause the condition to get worse.
  • Kidney disease, whether severe 
  • Use with cautiousness. The effects could be increased because of the slower removal of the medication in the human body.

The proper use of azithromycin

Use azithromycin only as prescribed by your physician. Do not exceed the dosage and do not use it more frequently and do not use it for a longer period than what your doctor has ordered.

Azithromycin includes a patient’s information leaflet. Follow the directions carefully. Consult your physician if you have any concerns.

You can consume Zithromax(r) liquid orally as well as a tablet in combination with food or not.

Shake thoroughly the bottle of Zithromax(r) Oral Liquid prior to each use. Take your dose precisely using a measured measuring spoon with a marked marking, an oral syringe, or a medicine cup. The standard teaspoon used in the home may not contain the proper quantity of liquid.

Make sure you measure Zmax(r) extended-release oral suspension. Measure Zmax(r) extended-release suspension using a clearly measured measure spoon, measuring syringe, or cup. Your child or you should consume azithromycin within 12 hours of having was mixed into water. It is advised to consume Zmax(r) extended-release oral suspension. Zmax(r) Extended-Release oral suspension on an empty stomach at least one hour prior to or two hours following the meal. If your child is unable to take all the medication inside the bottle discard it after giving the dosage.

If your child or you has a stomach upset within an hour of having taken the Zmax(r) extended-release suspension for oral use contact your doctor immediately to determine the need for additional medicine.

Continue to take azithromycin for the entire duration of treatment regardless of whether either you or the kid feels better after the first doses. The infection might not heal when you stop taking the medicine too early.

If you’re taking antacids containing magnesium or aluminum don’t use them at the same as you are taking Zithromax(r). These medications can prevent azithromycin from working as it should. But, you can still use antacids along in conjunction with Zmax(r).


The dose of azithromycin is likely to differ in different people. Follow the doctor’s instructions or the instructions in the prescription. The information below is only azithromycin doses in the range of the typical. If you have a different dose you should not alter it until your doctor advises you to change it.

The quantity of medicine you consume is contingent on how strong the drug is. In addition, the number of doses you will take every day, the amount of time between doses, as well as the duration of time that you use the medication depend on the medical condition that you’re treating with the medication.

  • For oral dosage forms (extended-release suspension):
    • Treatment for pneumonia:
      • Adults–2 grams (g) once as a single dose.
      • Children who weigh 34 kilograms (kg) or more–Dose determined by the body’s weight and should be determined by your physician. The usual dose is 2 grams daily that is taken as one dose.
      • Children aged 6 months and over weighing less than 34kg–Dose is based on body mass and should be determined by your physician. The usual dose is 60 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight every day, administered as only one dose.
    • Treatment for sinusitis:
      • Adults: 2 grams (g) daily in one dose.
      • Children–Use and dosage must be determined by your physician.
  • Forms of oral dose (suspension or tablet):
    • To treat infections:
      • Adults – 500 up to 2000 milligrams (mg) every day and taken in one dose. Based on the type of disease, this could be followed by doses of 250-500 mg every day for a period of time.
      • Children aged 6 months and older – Dose is based on the weight of your body and is determined by your physician. The usual dose is 10-30 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight every day and taken in one dose. Based on the type of disease, this can be followed by doses of 5-10 mg per kilogram of body weight each day for a period of several days.
      • Children under six months old–Use and dosage should be determined by your physician.
    • To treat pharyngitis and tonsillitis:
      • Adults: 500 milligrams (mg) on Day 1 (the first day) to be taken in one dose. Then 250 mg from Day 2 and Day 5.
      • Children 2 years old and older – Dose is based on the weight of your body and is established by your doctor. The usual dose is twelve milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight, once per day for 5 days.
      • Children under 2 years old – Use and dose should be determined by your doctor.

Missed dose

If you are missing an azithromycin dose and you are unable to get it back, do it as fast as you can. But, if it’s close to the time for the next dose, avoid any missed doses and then go back to your normal dose schedule. Don’t double dose your doses.


Keep away from the reach of children.

Don’t keep old medicine or medicines that are no longer required.

Discuss with your doctor to tell you how to dispose of any medicine that you do not make use of.

Place the medicine in a tightly sealed container that is kept at room temperature and away from moisture, heat, and bright light. Avoid getting frozen.

Do not freeze or refrigerate or freeze the Zmax(r) extended-release suspension for oral use. After adding water to the mixture, take your dose in 12 hours, and dispose of any liquid that is not used following the dose.

You can store the Zithromax(r) oral solution at ambient temperature or in the refrigerator. Don’t put the bottle in a freezer. Don’t keep the oral liquid for longer than 10 consecutive days. Get rid of any remaining liquid after the last dose has been taken.


Be aware of the precautions to take when using azithromycin.

It is crucial to have your doctor monitor the health of your child or you during regular visits to ensure azithromycin is functioning properly. Tests for urine and blood may be required to determine adverse consequences.

If your child’s symptoms don’t improve after a few days or if they start to get worse, talk to your physician.

Azithromycin can cause severe allergic reactions, such as angioedema and anaphylaxis. These could be life-threatening and requires urgent medical care. Contact your physician immediately in the event that either you or your kid suffer from itching, a rash, and hives, hoarseness, difficulty breathing, difficulty swallowing, or any swelling in your hands, face, or mouth following the use of azithromycin.

Skin reactions that are serious, such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome and acute exanthematous pustulosis and toxic epidermal necrolysis, and an eosinophilic reaction and symptoms of the system (DRESS) are possible with azithromycin. Talk to your doctor immediately when the child or you suffer from black, tarry stools peeling, blistering or loosening of the skin, symptoms of chest discomfort, chills cough and diarrhea, itching muscle or joint pain or difficulty in urine, red eyes, and red skin lesions typically with a purple central sore throat, sores or ulcers, or white spots that appear in the mouth or around the mouth. swelling of the glands, unusual bleeding or bruising, or abnormal weakness or fatigue while you’re taking azithromycin.

Consult your physician right now If the child or you experience discomfort or tenderness in the stomach area or bowel, pale stool, dark urine, decreased appetite or nausea or unusual fatigue or weakness, or eyes that are yellow or skin. These are signs of a liver issue that is serious.

Contact your doctor now if you notice that your child is uneasy or vomits after eating. It could be an indication of a condition known as infantile hypertrophic Pyloric Stenosis.

Azithromycin can cause diarrhea and in certain cases, it can be extremely severe. It can occur for 2 months or more following the stopped taking azithromycin. Don’t take any medication to treat diarrhea without talking to your doctor. Diarrhea medicine can make diarrhea worse or cause it to persist for longer. Should you and your kid have any concerns about this, as well as if diarrhea that is mild persists or becomes worse, consult with your physician.

Azithromycin may cause changes in the rhythm of your heart and QT prolongation. It could alter the rhythm of your heart and may cause fainting, or even serious side effects for certain patients. Get your doctor’s attention immediately when the child or you has any indications of heart rhythm disorders such as rapid, pounding, and irregular heartbeats.

Azithromycin can cause an increase in the likelihood of developing serious blood vessel or heart issues. Contact your doctor immediately when you notice blurred vision and chest pains, as well as dizziness, confusion, lightheadedness fainting, rapid or irregular heartbeats, and breathing difficulties, or unusual tiredness or weakness.

Do not take any other medications in the absence of discussing with your physician. This includes prescription and prescription (over-the-counter OTC) medicine, herbal and vitamin supplements.

Azithromycin adverse negative effects

Alongside its necessary effects, medicines can result in unwanted adverse effects. While not all of these negative side effects are likely to be present, if they do occur, they could require medical attention.

Talk to your doctor immediately If any of these adverse effects happen:

More popular

  • Diarrhea
  • loose stool

Less well-known

  • Acute irritation, blistering itching as well as reddening and swelling of the skin
  • cracked dry or scaly skin
  • The fever
  • swelling


  • Peeling, blistering, or loosening of the skin
  • Bloody or cloudy urine
  • bloody black, bloody, or stool that is black, bloody, or
  • Body aches or pains
  • burning when urinating
  • Tightness or pain in the chest
  • chills
  • congestion
  • The cough has gotten worse
  • Mucus-producing cough
  • Dark urine that is dark
  • difficulty or labored breathing
  • Urination that is painful or difficult to perform
  • dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Dryness or soreness of the throat
  • earache
  • fainting
  • rapid or irregular, pounding or racing heartbeats or pulse
  • a general sensation of an illness or discomfort
  • headache
  • indigestion
  • Heart rate irregular or slow
  • itching or itching or rash
  • Muscle or joint or muscle
  • A large, hive-like swelling appears around the eyes, face mouth, lips throat, hands, feet, legs, or sexual organs
  • stool with a light color
  • Loss of appetite
  • Muscle aches and pains
  • nausea or vomiting
  • loud breathing
  • passing gas
  • Red skin lesions, usually with a purple-colored center
  • Eyes that are red and irritated
  • The ear may be red or swollen. ears
  • nasal runny nose
  • Shivering
  • Snorting
  • ulcers, sores, or spots of white on lips or inside the mouth
  • stomach pain, continuing
  • stomach pain, feeling full, or discomfort
  • stuffy nose
  • sweating
  • swelling of the ankles, face or feet, hands or lower leg swelling
  • swelling, tender glands in the neck
  • problems with sleep
  • difficulty swallowing
  • Bad breath smell
  • unusual bleeding or unusual bleeding or
  • unusual fatigue or weakness
  • upper right stomach or stomach discomfort in the upper right abdominal or stomach
  • voice changes
  • Bloody vomiting
  • Yellow eyes or skin

The exact cause is not known.

  • Bleeding gums
  • Bloating
  • blood in urine or stool
  • blurred vision
  • change in hearing
  • Stools made of clay
  • Coma
  • confusion
  • constipation
  • continuous buzzing or ringing, or any other unidentified sound within the ears
  • lower output of urine
  • Depression
  • diarrhea, which is watery and severe that can also be bloody
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when rising quickly from a sitting or lying or seated
  • fainting
  • significantly reduced the frequency of urination or the amount of urine
  • Hives
  • hostility
  • an increase in thirst
  • irritability
  • Lethargy
  • Hearing loss
  • Lower back or side discomfort
  • muscles moving
  • No pulse or blood pressure
  • abdominal pains abdominal, side or stomach or side, which may radiate into the back
  • pale skin
  • tiny red spots on the skin
  • Swelling or puffiness on the eyelids and around the eyes or lips or the tongue
  • rapid weight gain
  • seizures
  • The stomach may cramp or be tender.
  • Stopping of the heart
  • stupor
  • unconsciousness
  • unusual weight loss

There are some side effects that can occur but they usually do not require medical care. These side effects can be eliminated after treatment, as your body adjusts the medication. Additionally your health professional might be able to inform you how to prevent or minimize the effects of these adverse effects. Consult your physician for any of these symptoms persist or become uncomfortable or if you have concerns about these:


  • Acid or a sour stomach
  • angry or aggressive
  • undesirable, unusual unpleasant, or unusual (after) taste
  • Belching
  • sensation of burning in the stomach or chest
  • burning and itching sensation of numbness, pain, “pins and needles” or tingling sensations
  • changes in the taste
  • The color of the tongue.
  • crying
  • depersonalization
  • dry mouth
  • dysphoria
  • Euphoria
  • Gas or excess air can be found within the stomach, or the intestines
  • sense of continuous motion of oneself or the surrounding
  • full feeling
  • heartburn
  • hyperventilation
  • Increase in body movements
  • itching in the vagina or the genital region
  • weakness or lack of strength or
  • mental depression
  • Nervousness
  • pain during sexual intercourse
  • anxiety
  • quick to react emotionally or overreact
  • rapid changes in mood
  • The rash can be flat or small raised lesions that appear on the skin
  • Redness on the skin
  • insanity
  • feeling of spinning
  • shaking
  • Sleepiness or unusual tiredness
  • stomach upset
  • Vaginal discharge that is thick and white that is not odorless or without an odor that is mild
  • white spots in the tongue, mouth, or in the throat

The exact cause is not known.

  • Moving is difficult for me.
  • an increase in the sensitivity of the skin to the sun
  • Muscle pain or stiffness
  • joint pain
  • Redness or other discoloration on the skin
  • severe sunburn
  • trouble sitting still

Other adverse side effects that are not listed can also occur in certain patients. If you observe any other side effects, you should consult with your doctor.


Additional details

Always consult your physician to confirm that the information provided on this page is applicable to your particular situation.


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