What is doxycycline?
Doxycycline is a tetracycline antibiotic that fights bacteria in the body.
Doxycycline is used to treat many different bacterial infections, such as acne, urinary tract infections, intestinal infections, respiratory infections, eye infections, gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, periodontitis (gum disease), and others.
Doxycycline is also used to treat blemishes, bumps, and acne-like lesions caused by rosacea. It will not treat facial redness caused by rosacea.
Some forms of doxycycline are used to prevent malaria, to treat anthrax, or to treat infections caused by mites, ticks, or lice.
You should not take doxycycline if you are allergic to any tetracycline antibiotic.
Children younger than 8 years old should use doxycycline only in cases of severe or life-threatening conditions. This medicine can cause permanent yellowing or graying of the teeth in children.
Using doxycycline during pregnancy could harm the unborn baby or cause permanent tooth discoloration later in the baby's life.
Before taking this medicine
You should not take this medicine if you are allergic to doxycycline or other tetracycline antibiotics such as demeclocycline, minocycline, tetracycline, or tigecycline.
To make sure doxycycline is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:
- liver disease;
- kidney disease;
- asthma or sulfite allergy;
- increased pressure inside your skull; or
- if you also take isotretinoin, seizure medicine, or a blood thinner such as warfarin.
If you are using doxycycline to treat chlamydia, your doctor may test you to make sure you do not also have gonorrhea, another sexually transmitted disease.
Taking this medicine during pregnancy may affect tooth and bone development in the unborn baby. Taking doxycycline during the last half of pregnancy can cause permanent tooth discoloration later in the baby's life. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or if you become pregnant while using this medicine.
Doxycycline can make birth control pills less effective. Ask your doctor about using a non-hormonal birth control (condom, diaphragm with spermicide) to prevent pregnancy.
Doxycycline can pass into breast milk and may affect bone and tooth development in a nursing infant. The extent of absorption is unknown. Do not breast-feed while you are taking this medicine.
Children should not use this medicine. Doxycycline can cause permanent yellowing or graying of the teeth in children younger than 8 years old.
Children should use doxycycline only in cases of severe or life-threatening conditions such as anthrax or Rocky Mountain spotted fever. The benefit of treating a serious condition may outweigh any risks to the child's tooth development.
How should I take doxycycline?
Take doxycycline exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Take doxycycline with a full glass of water. Drink plenty of liquids while you are taking this medicine.
Most brands of doxycyline may be taken with food or milk if the medicine upsets your stomach. Different brands of doxycycline may have different instructions about taking them with or without food.
Take Oracea on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal.
You may open a regular capsule or break up a regular tablet and sprinkle the medicine into a spoonful of applesauce to make swallowing easier. Swallow right away without chewing. Do not save the mixture for later use. Drink a full glass (8 ounces) of cool water right away.
Do not crush, break, or open a delayed-release capsule or tablet. Swallow the pill whole.
You may need to split a doxycycline tablet to get the correct dose. Follow your doctor's instructions.
Measure liquid medicine with the dosing syringe provided, or with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.
If you take doxycycline to prevent malaria: Start taking the medicine 1 or 2 days before entering an area where malaria is common. Continue taking the medicine every day during your stay and for at least 4 weeks after you leave the area. Use protective clothing, insect repellents, and mosquito netting around your bed to further prevent mosquito bites that could cause malaria.
Use this medicine for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared. Skipping doses may also increase your risk of further infection that is resistant to antibiotics. Doxycycline will not treat a viral infection such as the flu or a common cold.
If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using doxycycline.
Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat and light.
Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date on the label has passed. Using expired doxycycline can cause damage to your kidneys.
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