Description and Brand Names

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

US Brand Name

  1. Zithromax

Descriptions


Azithromycin injection is used to treat bacterial infections in many different parts of the body. It is also used to prevent Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) disease in patients infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

Azithromycin belongs to the class of drugs known as macrolide antibiotics. It works by killing bacteria or preventing their growth. However, this medicine will not work for colds, flu, or other virus infections. Azithromycin injection may be used for other problems as determined by your doctor.

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription.

Once a medicine has been approved for marketing for a certain use, experience may show that it is also useful for other medical problems. Although these uses are not included in product labeling, azithromycin is used in certain patients with the following medical condition:

  • Trachoma (treatment).

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Powder for Solution

Before Using

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of azithromycin injection in children and teenagers younger than 16 years of age. Safety and efficacy have not been established.

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of azithromycin injection in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related heart problems, which may require caution in patients receiving azithromycin injection.

Pregnancy

Information about this azithromycin-intravenous-route
Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters B Animal studies have revealed no evidence of harm to the fetus, however, there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR animal studies have shown an adverse effect, but adequate studies in pregnant women have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus.

Breastfeeding

Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.

  • Amifampridine
  • Cisapride
  • Dihydroergotamine
  • Dronedarone
  • Ergoloid Mesylates
  • Ergonovine
  • Ergotamine
  • Mesoridazine
  • Methylergonovine
  • Methysergide
  • Pimozide
  • Piperaquine
  • Sparfloxacin
  • Thioridazine

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Acecainide
  • Afatinib
  • Alfuzosin
  • Amiodarone
  • Amitriptyline
  • Amoxapine
  • Apomorphine
  • Arsenic Trioxide
  • Asenapine
  • Astemizole
  • Azimilide
  • Bosutinib
  • Bretylium
  • Chloroquine
  • Chlorpromazine
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Citalopram
  • Clarithromycin
  • Clomipramine
  • Clozapine
  • Crizotinib
  • Dabigatran Etexilate
  • Dabrafenib
  • Dasatinib
  • Delamanid
  • Desipramine
  • Disopyramide
  • Dofetilide
  • Dolasetron
  • Domperidone
  • Doxorubicin
  • Doxorubicin Hydrochloride Liposome
  • Droperidol
  • Erythromycin
  • Escitalopram
  • Everolimus
  • Fingolimod
  • Flecainide
  • Fluconazole
  • Fluoxetine
  • Gatifloxacin
  • Gemifloxacin
  • Granisetron
  • Halofantrine
  • Haloperidol
  • Ibutilide
  • Iloperidone
  • Imipramine
  • Ivabradine
  • Ketoconazole
  • Lapatinib
  • Levofloxacin
  • Lopinavir
  • Lumefantrine
  • Mefloquine
  • Methadone
  • Mifepristone
  • Morphine
  • Morphine Sulfate Liposome
  • Moxifloxacin
  • Nilotinib
  • Norfloxacin
  • Nortriptyline
  • Octreotide
  • Ofloxacin
  • Ondansetron
  • Paliperidone
  • Pazopanib
  • Perflutren Lipid Microsphere
  • Pixantrone
  • Pomalidomide
  • Posaconazole
  • Procainamide
  • Prochlorperazine
  • Promethazine
  • Propafenone
  • Protriptyline
  • Quetiapine
  • Quinidine
  • Quinine
  • Ranolazine
  • Romidepsin
  • Salmeterol
  • Saquinavir
  • Sematilide
  • Sevoflurane
  • Simvastatin
  • Sodium Phosphate
  • Sodium Phosphate, Dibasic
  • Sodium Phosphate, Monobasic
  • Solifenacin
  • Sorafenib
  • Sotalol
  • Sunitinib
  • Tedisamil
  • Telithromycin
  • Terfenadine
  • Tetrabenazine
  • Topotecan
  • Toremifene
  • Trabectedin
  • Trazodone
  • Trifluoperazine
  • Trimipramine
  • Vandetanib
  • Vardenafil
  • Vemurafenib
  • Vincristine
  • Vincristine Sulfate Liposome
  • Vinflunine
  • Voriconazole
  • Warfarin
  • Ziprasidone

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Atorvastatin
  • Digoxin
  • Fentanyl
  • Lovastatin
  • Nelfinavir
  • Rifabutin
  • Theophylline

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Congestive heart failure or
  • Diarrhea or
  • Heart disease or
  • Heart rhythm problems (e.g., prolonged QT interval), history of or
  • Liver disease or
  • Myasthenia gravis (severe muscle weakness)—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Kidney disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body. .
  • Liver disease, history of—Should not be used in patients with this condition.

Proper Use

A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine. This medicine is given through a needle placed in one of your veins. This medicine is given slowly, so the needle will remain in place for about an hour.

Your doctor may give you a few doses of this medicine until your condition improves, and then you may be switched to an oral medicine that works the same way. If you have any concerns about this, talk to your doctor.

Precautions

Your doctor will check your progress closely while you are receiving this medicine. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to receive it. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.

If your symptoms do not improve within a few days, or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This medicine may cause serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. Call your doctor right away if you have a rash; itching; hives; hoarseness; shortness of breath; trouble breathing; trouble swallowing; or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth after you receive this medicine.

Serious skin reactions can occur with this medicine. Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you have blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin; red skin lesions; severe acne or skin rash; sores or ulcers on the skin; or fever or chills while you are using this medicine.

Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you have pain or tenderness in the upper stomach; pale stools; dark urine; loss of appetite; nausea; unusual tiredness or weakness; or yellow eyes or skin. These could be symptoms of a serious liver problem.

Azithromycin injection may cause diarrhea, and in some cases it can be severe. It may occur 2 months or more after you stop using this medicine. Do not take any medicine to treat diarrhea without checking first with your doctor. Diarrhea medicines may make the diarrhea worse or make it last longer. If you have any questions about this or if mild diarrhea continues or gets worse, check with your doctor.

Tell your doctor if you have bleeding, blistering, burning, discoloration of the skin, itching, lumps, pain, rash, redness, or swelling at the injection site.

This medicine can cause changes in heart rhythms, such as a condition called QT prolongation. It may change the way your heart beats and cause fainting or serious side effects in some patients. Contact your doctor right away if you have any symptoms of heart rhythm problems, such as fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeats.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  1. Pain, redness, and swelling at the injection site

Less common

  1. Difficult or labored breathing
  2. loose stools
  3. shortness of breath
  4. tightness in the chest
  5. wheezing

Rare

  1. Abdominal or stomach cramps or pain (severe)
  2. abdominal or stomach tenderness
  3. diarrhea (watery and severe, which may be bloody)
  4. fever
  5. joint pain
  6. skin rash
  7. swelling of the face, mouth, neck, hands, and feet

Incidence not known

  1. Agitation
  2. black, tarry stools
  3. bleeding gums
  4. blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
  5. bloating
  6. blood in the urine or stools
  7. bloody or cloudy urine
  8. blurred vision
  9. chest pain or discomfort
  10. chills
  11. coma
  12. confusion
  13. constipation
  14. convulsions
  15. cough
  16. darkened urine
  17. decreased urine output
  18. depression
  19. difficulty with swallowing
  20. dizziness
  21. dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  22. fainting
  23. fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeat or pulse
  24. fever with or without chills
  25. general feeling of discomfort or illness
  26. greatly decreased frequency of urination or amount of urine
  27. headache
  28. hives
  29. hostility
  30. increased thirst
  31. indigestion
  32. irregular heartbeat recurrent
  33. irregular or slow heart rate
  34. itching
  35. large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  36. lethargy
  37. light-colored stools
  38. loss of appetite
  39. muscle pain
  40. muscle twitching
  41. nausea or vomiting
  42. pain
  43. pains in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
  44. pinpoint red spots on the skin
  45. puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  46. rapid weight gain
  47. red skin lesions, often with a purple center
  48. red, irritated eyes
  49. shortness of breath
  50. sore throat
  51. sores, ulcers, or white spots in the mouth or on the lips
  52. stupor
  53. sweating
  54. swelling of the hands, ankles, feet, or lower legs
  55. tightness in the chest
  56. unusual bleeding or bruising
  57. unusual tiredness or weakness
  58. wheezing
  59. yellow eyes or skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common

  1. Diarrhea (mild)
  2. nausea
  3. stomach pain or discomfort (mild)
  4. weight loss

Less common or rare

  1. Acid or sour stomach
  2. belching
  3. burning feeling in the chest or stomach
  4. cracked lips
  5. excess air or gas in the stomach or intestines
  6. full feeling
  7. heartburn
  8. passing gas
  9. sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  10. sore mouth or tongue
  11. stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
  12. white patches in the mouth, tongue, or throat

Incidence not known

  1. Attack, assault, or force
  2. bad, unusual, or unpleasant (after) taste
  3. burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, "pins and needles", or tingling feelings
  4. change in taste
  5. continuing ringing or buzzing or other unexplained noise in the ears
  6. difficulty with moving
  7. discoloration of the tongue
  8. dizziness or lightheadedness
  9. feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  10. hearing loss
  11. itching of the vagina or genital area
  12. lack or loss of strength
  13. loss of sense of smell
  14. muscle pain or stiffness
  15. pain during sexual intercourse
  16. sensation of spinning
  17. thick, white vaginal discharge with no odor or with a mild odor
  18. trouble sitting still

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.