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What is Doxycycline?
Doxycycline is an antibiotic used to treat a wide variety of bacterial infections. It is part of the tetracycline antibiotics group.
The tablet comes available in two potencies, Doxycycline 100mg or 50mg, and the patient will be prescribed the appropriate dosage by their doctor.
What is Doxycycline used for?
This antibiotic provides effective treatment for a number a bacterial infections, such as malaria and rosacea.
It is recommended as the primary treatment for chlamydia due to the decreased chance of bacterial resistance. This is usually done by taking 2 capsules daily (14 capsules in total) over a period of 7 days. Doxycycline is also used to treat gonorrhoea and other sexually-transmitted infections.
It can also be used to treat various other types of infections, including respiratory infections, ear infections, skin infections, psittacosis, diarrhoea, leptospirosis, brucellosis, tick fever and Q fever. It can even be used to treat acne.
This medicine will not help to treat the effects or symptoms of a common cold or flu.
Who should not use Doxycycline
This antibiotic should only be taken by adults and children who are over 12 years of age.
It is not normally recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding to use Doxycycline. If you are trying to get pregnant, you should also inform your doctor before taking it.
Inform your doctor if you have any of the following, as Doxycycline may not be suitable for you:
- Kidney problems
- Liver problems
- You have had an allergic reaction to Doxycycline or other medicines in the past
- You are likely to be exposed to strong sunlight/ultraviolet light
- Myasthenia gravis
- Inflamed food pipe (oesophagitis)
- Systemic lupus erythematosus
Possible side effects
Around 1 in 10 people will experience the common adverse effects. If you do experience any of these, do not stop taking the medication, but consult your doctor or pharmacist if these side effects persist or bother you:
- Sensitivity to sunlight
For more serious reactions, refer to our Side Effects tab. Always read the patient information leaflet, which will accompany your medication.
Always read the instructions and advice within the information leaflet that will accompany your medication.
If you forget a dose, take it as soon as you remember, unless it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at the same time and do not take an extra dose to make up for missing one.
You should always ensure you complete the prescribed course to make certain the bacteria has been fought properly.
Taking Doxycycline for chlamydia
Take one capsule twice a day for 7 days (14 capsules in total). Take Doxycycline either with or after a meal, with a full glass of water.
If you are taking this antibiotic to treat chlamydia, do not have sex for seven days after the completion of treatment. Take another chlamydia test after 14 days.
Treating acne with Doxycycline
Doxycycline should be taken once a day for 6 or 12 weeks, to cure acne or blisters on the skin.
Treating malaria with Doxycycline
Take two 100mg Doxycycline tablets for 7 days (14 capsules in total).
Typhus can also be prevented by having only one tablet.
Taking Doxycycline for rosacea
50mg or 100mg depending on your individual condition is recommended. Further courses of the antibiotic may be required as inflammatory rosacea is a chronic condition.
Treating diarrhoea with Doxycycline
Patients are advised to have 200mg immediately. The dose must then be reduced to 100mg for a maximum of 3 weeks.
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What does Doxycycline contain?
Doxycycline Side Effects
Serious adverse effects are rare and happen in less than 1 in 1,000 people, but you should still call your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following:
- Diarrhoea that contains mucus or blood
- Dark urine or pale stools
- Yellow skin, yellowing in the whites of the eyes (could be a liver problem)
- Joint or muscle pain
- Unexplained bruising or bleeding, sore throat, high temperature or feeling unwell (possible signs of blood problems)
- Fingernails coming away from the base
- Ringing of the ears
- Swollen mouth, lips or tongue
- Severe stomach pains, with or without vomiting or diarrhoea
- Difficulty in swallowing or pain when swallowing
- Acid reflux, smaller appetite or chest pains which worsen when you eat
- Severe headaches, problems with your vision
It is quite common for people to have an allergic reaction to Doxycycline and, in rare cases, this can lead to anaphylaxis.
If you experience any of the below, you should either go to A&E or call 999:
- A skin rash which may blister, peel, swell, redden or itch
- Difficulty in breathing or talking
- Tightness in the chest or throat
- Swelling of the mouth, tongue, throat, face or lips
Please refer to the patient information leaflet which will come with your medicine for the full list of possible risks.
Doxycycline Warnings and Drug Interactions
If you are taking any other medicines, you should also tell your doctor as certain medications do not mix well with Doxycycline.
Be sure to inform your doctor if you are taking any of these medicines before you start to use Doxycycline:
- Iron supplements
- Other antibiotics
- Stomach ulcer medicines that contain bismuth
- Indigestion remedies (antacids)
- Acne medicines containing vitamin A
- Warfarin (blood thinners)
- Supplements containing bismuth, calcium, magnesium or zinc, aluminium
- Epilepsy medicines, such as phenytoin or carbamazepine
There are no known issues with combining this medicine with herbal remedies and supplements, but you should still inform your doctor or pharmacy if you are taking any.
If you require a typhoid vaccination while using this antibiotic, you will be given it via injection by your doctor as the oral vaccine may not work properly.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Doxycycline is not recommended during pregnancy or breastfeeding. Always talk to your docotr if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or planning to conceive before taking any medication.
The active ingredient is Doxycycline 100mg (as hyclate).
Each Doxycycline tablet contains: gelatin, magnesium stearate, shellac glaze, sodium lauryl sulphate, starch, E104, E127, E131, E171, E172 & propylene glycol.
How it works - get your medicine in 3 simple steps
- 1 Choose your treatment Select the treatment or medication you need and answer a few questions online regarding your condition.
- 2 Online consultation Our Independent Prescribers will review your questions and assess your suitability for the medication.
- 3 Receive your delivery Your medication is dispensed and delivered directly to you from our UK based Pharmacy.