Doxycycline is a drug of semi-synthetic origins belonging to the tetracycline series of antibiotics. The active ingredient specific to this drug class exerts its action on many different types of pathogenic microorganisms.
Doxycycline demonstrates a wide range of action as an antibiotic drug. Therefore, Doxycycline is used as one of the primary drugs for the treatment of infectious diseases.
Doxycycline effectively exerts its antibiotic properties on many types of pathogenic flora. However, Doxycycline is primarily prescribed for infections associated with aerobic and anaerobic microorganisms.
Doxycycline is highly effective in the treatment of diseases caused by streptococcal forms, staphylococci, salmonella, and E. coli. This antibiotic drug may also be used to treat common diseases such as cholera, tularemia, plague, and anthrax to which the underlying causative agent is clostridia, a dysentery rod.
Doxycycline is taken orally and quickly absorbed. The absorption of this drug mainly occurs in the gastrointestinal tract leading to a rapid therapeutic effect. The total concentration of Doxycycline can be absorbed within two hours.
Forms of Doxycycline
Doxycycline can be prescribed in the following dosage forms:
- Tablets: released in 100 mg units, 10 per pack.
- Powder mixture enclosed within capsules made of gelatin, five capsules per pack.
- Injection: Liofilizate. Contained within ampoules each containing 100 mg of Doxycycline. Each Liofilizate pack may contain 5 or 10 ampoules.
The primary indications for Doxycycline use may include the following:
- Upper and lower respiratory tract infections (e.g., pneumonia, bronchitis, purulent pathologies in the form of pleurisy, abscess, and phlegmon).
- Urinary tract infection (e.g., cystitis, pyelonephritis, urethritis).
- Otorhinolaryngology diseases (e.g., sinusitis, tonsillitis, frontal sinus, and maxillary sinusitis).
- Abnormalities of the gastrointestinal tract (e.g., typhoid fever, Escherichia, cholera, dysentery, rotavirus infection, salmonellosis, and others).
- Infectious processes affecting male or female genitals as well as the excretory system (e.g., prostatitis, endometritis, and epididymitis).
- Inflammatory diseases of the digestive tract caused by microorganisms (e.g., peritonitis, enterocolitis, proctitis, and cholecyst cholangitis).
- Infections of the skin and soft tissues (e.g., carbuncles, furunculosis, acne, and phlegmon).
- Sexually transmitted diseases (e.g., chlamydia, syphilis, gonorrhea, herpes, and uterine erosion).
- Infectious diseases of the whole organism (e.g., tularemia, whooping cough, fever, typhoid, leptospirosis, and others).
- Ophthalmic infections (e.g., ulcerative keratitis, conjunctivitis, chlamydia, and trachoma).
- Osteomyelitis, infectious arthritis, and other diseases.
Doxycycline is also commonly used to prevent malaria and harmful consequences following an abortion.
The use of Doxycycline is contraindicated in the following circumstances:
- Hypersensitivity to antibacterial agents falling within the tetracycline drug class, particularly Doxycycline or its subcomponents.
- Low leukocyte levels.
- Lactose intolerance.
- Liver disease.
- Children younger than eight years of age.
- Lupus erythematosus.
- Hereditary disease characterized by impaired absorption of sugar in the body.
- High blood plasma levels of porphyrins, which serves as an important pigment of blood cells.
- Children over 12 years of age weighing less than 45 kg.
Potential side effects associated with taking Doxycycline include the following:
Irritation of the gastrointestinal tract (e.g., nausea, vomiting, a violation of appetite, diarrhea).
Abnormal central nervous system function (e.g., headaches, dizziness, and/or impaired visual function).
Abnormal hemopoietic system function (e.g., reduction of erythrocytes and thrombocytes, increased level of eosinophils, and/or onset of anemia).
Abnormal intestinal microflora (i.e., dysbacteriosis).
The primary sign of non-compliant drug dosing and intake frequency are allergic reactions, which are characterized by the development of itching, rashes, and hyperemia of the skin.
Doxycycline uses and dosage
When taking Doxycycline, it is necessary to strictly follow the instructions, namely the dosage, frequency, and method of drug administration.
Since Doxycycline is available in several forms, the method of administration may be dependent on the intended use of the patient.
The dose of Doxycycline is 1 to 2 times daily to which the interval between doses should be at least 12 hours. The amount of active ingredient that is prescribed is determined by the attending physician and depends on the severity of disease, the type of pathogen, and patient age.
Doxycycline use in tablet form can be taken irrespective of the time of food intake, but preferably before meals. In most cases, the dose of Doxycycline is determined as 200 mg delivered for the first day and 100 mg for each subsequent day of the therapeutic course. Doxycycline tablets should be taken with an ample amount of water. Children weighing more than 45 kg are initially prescribed Doxycycline at 4 mg per kg of body weight, and then the dosage can be reduced to 2-4 mg.
When taken in capsule form, the instructions for Doxycycline use are the same as those for tablets.
When Doxycycline is delivered via intravenous injection, a single dosage should not exceed more than 200 mg.
The maximum oral dose of Doxycycline should not exceed 600 mg.
Treatment during pregnancy
Doxycycline should not be taken during pregnancy because the active ingredient negatively affects fetal development. Antibiotic use while pregnant can also provoke liver malfunction of the mother, slow fetal growth, and destroy tooth enamel.
Interactions while consuming alcohol
While it is common that medications should not be taken with alcoholic beverages, Doxycycline is no exception. Consumption of alcohol while taking Doxycycline may exacerbate signs and symptoms associated with the potential side effects of both alcohol and this drug (e.g., lack of coordination, dizziness, headaches, migraine headaches, nausea, and vomiting).
Doxycycline and consumption of alcohol strongly affect the liver, increasing the risk of hepatitis and liver failure while potentially lessening the therapeutic effects of the drug.
Therefore, to avoid these consequences associated with the interactions between alcohol consumption and use of Doxycycline, it is critical to never consume any amount of alcohol while taking this antibiotic drug.