When is Azithromycin prescribed?
Azithromycin may be prescribed to treat a number of bacterial infections, such as uncomplicated Chlamydia. This product description will focus primarily on Azithromycin as a treatment for Chlamydia, however, your GP may have prescribed you Azithromycin to treat a different type of bacteria infection.
Azithromycin may be prescribed when a patient has had a positive result following a Chlamydia test. Chlamydia does not always cause symptoms, so it is important that you get tested if there is a chance you may have been infected.
You will find more information regarding Chlamydia testing on the NHS Choices website - Chlamydia.
Please note, Azithromycin should not be prescribed unless it is confirmed that you have been infected with Chlamydia.
How does azithromycin antibiotic work?
Azithromycin treats bacterial infections by stopping the production of proteins that are essential for the survival of the bacteria. This stops the bacteria from growing and multiplying so the bacteria cannot spread. Eventually, azithromycin destroys the bacteria and therefore clears the infection.
Who is azithromycin suitable for?
This antibiotic is suitable for adults and children who have been diagnosed with a bacterial infection that azithromycin is responsive to. Not all antibiotics can treat all bacterial infections, your doctor may need to take a tissue sample to ensure that this particular bacteria is responsive to azithromycin.
Who is azithromycin not suitable for?
There are a number of factors which may make you unsuitable to take Azithromycin. For instance, if you’re taking other medications that may interfere with this drug, or if you have a health condition that could be worsened by azithromycin, then this may not be an appropriate treatment for you. You should always consult your GP if you’re taking other medication, have a health condition or have a history of certain conditions, or are pregnant, to ensure that this medicine is safe for you to take.
Azithromycin and pregnancy
Taking azithromycin while pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding is dependent on the advice given to you by your GP. Under these circumstances, you should not take azithromycin without consulting a doctor.
Azithromycin and health conditions
Always ask a doctor if azithromycin is suitable to take if you have other health conditions. This medicine may not be suitable for those with kidney or liver problems, if you do have liver problems and are taking azithromycin your doctor may need to monitor your liver function. You should also speak to your GP about taking azithromycin if you have the following health conditions:
- Heart disease or any heart condition
- Low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood
- A condition that causes weak muscles known as myasthenia gravis
If you’re allergic to azithromycin or any other ingredient in this medication you will not be suitable as allergic reactions can be dangerous and life threatening. This also applies if you’re allergic to any other macrolide antibiotic such as erythromycin or clarithromycin.
Azithromycin and other medications
When starting a new medication you should always check that it is safe to take with other medicines that you may be currently taking to avoid side effects and interaction between the drugs. There are some medicines which may interact with azithromycin and these include:
- Ergo derivatives such as ergotamine
- Warfarin, or any medicines which prevent blood clots
- Colchicine (used to treat gout)
How to take azithromycin
Always follow the instructions of a doctor when taking this medication. The dosage of azithromycin for adults depends on your condition but usually, the dose is 500mg a day for 3-10 days. Azithromycin is not recommended for anyone under 45kg.
Azithromycin for chlamydia
To treat chlamydia, azithromycin can be given as a single dose in one day. You should only take azithromycin in this way if your condition has been diagnosed as chlamydia. If you suspect you have an STI you should not self-diagnose or self-prescribe. Azithromycin is used to treat some bacterial infections including the STIs, chlamydia, and gonorrhoea, which will need to be tested and diagnosed before taking this medicine.
What are the side effects of azithromycin?
As with any medication there are side effects, some are common and some are very rare with only 1 in 10,000 experiencing the rare side effects. If you experience any of the following side effects while taking this medication you should stop taking this medicine and visit your GP as soon as you can to discuss alternative treatment for your infection.
Common side effects
Symptoms which may affect less than 1 in 10 people include feeling sick, stomach cramps, diarrhoea and wind. There are other common symptoms which affect less people and these include:
- Headaches and dizziness
- Pins and needles/numbness
- Loss of appetite
- Disturbances in taste
- Visual disturbances/loss of hearing
- Skin rash/itching
- Joint pain
- Tiredness or weakness
Uncommon and rare side effects
There are side effects which can be dangerous but are very rare. You should pay close attention to signs of an allergic reaction such as a skin rash, wheezing or difficulty breathing, and swelling. If you’re having an allergic reaction to this medicine stop taking it right away and seek medical help immediately as this can be life-threatening. However, an allergy to azithromycin is rare.
Other rare side effects include:
- Yeast infections such as thrush
- Chest pain, palpitations
- Kidney problems
- Feeling nervous or agitated
- Constipation, stomach pain
- Loss of strength
- Reduction in some types of white blood cells
How to ease side effects
You can ease some of the side effects if they happen and reduce your risk of getting side effects. Informing your doctor about any other medication you may be taking will help to prevent interactions between drugs which may cause side effects. If you are taking other medication or have a medical condition let our doctors know when filling out your medical questionnaire so they can make a decision about whether azithromycin is suitable for you.
If you are experiencing side effects such as nausea, vomiting, or diarrhoea ensure that you’re drinking lots of fluids, and eat small, bland meals often throughout the day particularly if you’re losing your appetite. It’s important to avoid dehydration so drink plenty of fluids to keep hydrated and rest well.
Is azithromycin effective?
Azithromycin can effectively treat bacterial infections if it is used correctly. Always finish the prescribed course of antibiotics, if you don’t the bacteria may grow and the infection will return.
How to buy azithromycin online
You can buy azithromycin online at Doctor-4-U. We have GMC (General Medical Council) registered doctors on hand who make buying medication online safe, convenient, and fast. You can order your prescription medication from the comfort of your home by submitting a medical consultation form and relevant details that are reviewed by our online doctors to determine your suitability. Once you have been deemed suitable to take this particular medication it will be dispensed by our UK-based pharmacy and sent to you via a tracked courier service.
How is my order shipped to me?
When an order is ready for shipping, it is collected and delivered by either the Royal Mail or DPD depending on your preference (or possibly your location or the item you ordered). Each order is assigned a tracking number, which will be emailed to you at the time of dispatch. Your medicine will be sent in plain and discreet packaging that’s eco-friendly. We do not include any branding on our packaging nor any labels which inform readers what type of product is contained within.
Advice on Addiction and Medication Restrictions
If you are at all worried or concerned about an addiction to any type of medication, we urge you to speak to a professional for help and advice. Below are links to organisations that can help.
Talk To Frank
NHS Help & Advice On Drug Addiction