Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Strong Antibiotics For Chest Infection

What Other Drugs Will Affect Azithromycin

Community Acquired Pneumonia

Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using, especially:

  • digoxin or

  • clarithromycin or

  • a blood thinner – warfarin, Coumadin, Jantoven.

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with azithromycin, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

What Other Information Should I Know

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor may order certain lab tests to check your body’s response to clarithromycin.

The extended-release tablet does not dissolve in the stomach after swallowing. It slowly releases the medication as it passes through your digestive system. You may notice the tablet coating in the stool. This is normal and does not mean that you did not get the full dose of medication.

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Your prescription is probably not refillable. If you still have symptoms of infection after you finish the clarithromycin, call your doctor.

It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.

Accidentally Taking An Extra Dose

There’s an increased risk of side effects if you take 2 doses closer together than recommended.

Accidentally taking 1 extra dose of your antibiotic is unlikely to cause you any serious harm.

But it will increase your chances of getting side effects, such as pain in your stomach, diarrhoea, and feeling or being sick.

If you accidentally take more than 1 extra dose of your antibiotic, are worried or you get severe side effects, speak to your GP or call NHS 111 as soon as possible.

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When Antibiotics Are Needed

Antibiotics may be used to treat bacterial infections that:

  • are unlikely to clear up without antibiotics
  • could infect others
  • could take too long to clear without treatment
  • carry a risk of more serious complications

People at a high risk of infection may also be given antibiotics as a precaution, known as antibiotic prophylaxis.

Read more about when antibiotics are used and why they are not routinely used to treat infections.

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Symptoms Of Chest Infections

Pneumonia is more common in winter and spring. It can strike suddenly or come on slowly over a few days. The symptoms will depend on your age, the cause and severity of the infection, and any other medical problems you may have. Symptoms include:

  • Fast or difficult breathing
  • Coughing with brown or green-coloured phlegm
  • Fever
  • Blue colour around the lips
  • Stomach pain
  • A child may vomit, have diarrhoea and be irritable or lethargic.

Antibiotics For Cough From Other Causes

While its not likely that youll be prescribed antibiotics for bronchitis, it is possible that youll need antibiotics for an incessant cough caused by another bacteria.

An infection called whooping cough is caused by the bacteria Bordetella pertussis and can cause a lingering cough. Luckily, its prevented in most cases by the pertussis vaccine, which has reduced whooping cough infections drastically.

If you havent been vaccinated against whooping cough , its possible a cough could be caused by the pertussis bacteria.

The symptoms of pertussis are very similar to those of bronchitis. They include initial cold-like symptoms, including:

  • A sniffly, runny nose
  • A mild, occasional cough
  • Unusual pauses in breathing

In pertussis, especially in those who havent been vaccinated, these symptoms worsen and develop into unusual coughing fits with an accompanying high-pitched whoop sound. This usually happens one to two weeks after the initial infection.

These coughing fits can cause exhaustion and vomiting, and can last a long timeup to 10 weeks or more.

Pertussis infections are treated with antibiotics, and early treatment is essential to ease symptoms and prevent the spread of the disease.

Also, try to stay away from others, especially those too young to be vaccinated. Whooping cough is extremely dangerous to infants.

Antibiotics commonly prescribed to treat pertussis include:

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Can I Buy Antibiotics

No, in the UK they are only available from your chemist, with a doctor’s prescription. In some other parts of the world they are available over the counter. However, to reduce the problem of resistance due to inappropriate use of antibiotics, it is best to always obtain medical advice before buying antibiotics.

Top 10 List Of Common Infections Treated With Antibiotics

Antibiotics for Atypical Infections (Antibiotics – Lecture 7)
  • Carbapenems
  • Most antibiotics fall into their individual antibiotic classes. An antibiotic class is a grouping of different drugs that have similar chemical and pharmacologic properties. Their chemical structures may look comparable, and drugs within the same class may kill the same or related bacteria.

    However, it is important not to use an antibiotic for an infection unless your doctor specifically prescribes it, even if it’s in the same class as another drug you were previously prescribed. Antibiotics are specific for the kind of bacteria they kill. Plus, you would need a full treatment regimen to effectively cure your infection, so don’t use or give away leftover antibiotics.

    Note: Tables below are not all-inclusive, generics are available for many brands.

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    What Causes A Chest Infection

    A chest infection can be caused by a bacterial or viral infection. The exact cause will depend on the type of infection.

    For example, bronchitis is often caused by a virus, whereas most cases of pneumonia are bacterial in origin.

    You can catch a chest infection by inhaling the respiratory droplets that are generated when someone with an infection coughs or sneezes. Thats because the respiratory droplets carry the infection.

    Additionally, coming into contact with a surface thats contaminated with the virus or bacteria, and then touching your mouth or face can also spread the infection.

    You may be at an increased risk for a chest infection if you:

    • are elderly
    • have quick breathing, pain in your chest, or shortness of breath
    • feel dizzy, confused, or disoriented

    In order to diagnose your condition, the doctor will evaluate your symptoms and perform a physical examination, during which theyll use a stethoscope to listen to your heart and lungs as you breathe.

    The doctor may take a chest X-ray to determine the location and severity of your infection.

    They may also take a sputum or blood sample to find out whats causing your infection. If bacteria are causing your chest infection, these tests can also help them decide which antibiotic to use.

    How Is Walking Pneumonia Different From Regular Pneumonia

    Walking pneumonia differs from typical pneumonia in several ways, including:

    • Walking pneumonia is a milder form of pneumonia.
    • Walking pneumonia usually does not require bed rest or hospitalization.
    • Walking pneumonia is usually caused by Mycoplasma pneumoniae. Typical pneumonia is most commonly caused by _Streptococcus _pneumonia or influenza virus or rhinovirus.

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    When Should You See A Doctor

    Infection of the large airways in the lungs usually gets better by itself, so there is often no need to see a GP. If you have asthma or COPD you should take your doctor’s advice. They may have given you recommendations about increasing your inhaler medication or taking a ‘rescue pack’ of antibiotics and steroid tablets at the first sign of an infection. If not, speak with them for advice if you develop chest infection symptoms.

    There are a number of chest infection symptoms that mean you should see a GP even if you do not have any other lung problems. If your symptoms get worse, you should look out for these warning signs. They include:

    • If a fever, wheezing or headache becomes worse or severe.
    • If you develop fast breathing, shortness of breath, or chest pains.
    • If you cough up blood or if your phlegm becomes dark or rusty-coloured.
    • If you become drowsy or confused.
    • If a cough lasts for longer than 3-4 weeks.
    • If you have repeated bouts of acute bronchitis.
    • If any other symptom develops that you are concerned about.

    When Are Antibiotics Usually Prescribed

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    Antibiotics are normally only prescribed for more serious infections with germs .

    Most common infections are caused by viruses, when an antibiotic will not be of use. Even if you have a mild bacterial infection, the immune system can clear most bacterial infections. For example, antibiotics usually do little to speed up recovery from most ear, nose and throat infections that are caused by bacteria.

    So, do not be surprised if a doctor does not recommend an antibiotic for conditions caused by viruses or non-bacterial infections, or even for a mild bacterial infection.

    However, you do need antibiotics if you have certain serious infections caused by bacteria, such as meningitis or pneumonia. In these situations, antibiotics are often life-saving. When you are ill, doctors are skilled at checking you over to rule out serious illness and to advise if an antibiotic is needed. Urine infections also commonly need antibiotics to prevent spread to the kidneys.

    Antibiotics can also be prescribed to treat acne – a less serious condition. For acne, antibiotics can be taken by mouth or applied directly to the skin.

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    Why Is This Medication Prescribed

    Clarithromycin is used to treat certain bacterial infections, such as pneumonia , bronchitis , and infections of the ears, sinuses, skin, and throat. It also is used to treat and prevent disseminated Mycobacterium avium complex infection . It is used in combination with other medications to eliminate H. pylori, a bacterium that causes ulcers. Clarithromycin is in a class of medications called macrolide antibiotics. It works by stopping the growth of bacteria.

    Antibiotics such as clarithromycin will not work for colds, flu, or other viral infections. Taking antibiotics when they are not needed increases your risk of getting an infection later that resists antibiotic treatment.

    When Not To Use Antibiotics

    Antibiotics are not the correct choice for all infections. For example, most sore throats, cough and colds, flu, COVID or acute sinusitis are viral in origin and do not need an antibiotic. These viral infections are self-limiting, meaning that your own immune system will usually kick in and fight the virus off.

    Using antibiotics for viral infections can increase the risk for antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria cannot be fully inhibited or killed by an antibiotic, even though the antibiotic may have worked effectively before the resistance occurred. This can also lower your options for effective treatments if an antibiotic is needed eventually due to a secondary infection. Using unnecessary antibiotics also puts you at risk for side effects and adds extra cost.

    It’s important not to share your antibiotic or take medicine that was prescribed for someone else, and don’t save an antibiotic to use the next time you get sick. It may not be the right drug for your illness.

    To better understand antibiotics, its best to break them down into common infections, common antibiotics, and the top antibiotic classes as listed in

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    Other Upper Respiratory Tract Infections

    There are a few other reasons you might be prescribed antibiotics for an upper respiratory infection. Strep throat, medically known as streptococcal pharyngitis, is a sore throat caused by infection by streptococcal bacteria. It is usually treated with penicillin.

    Swelling of the epiglottis, the flap of tissue covering the windpipe, is potentially life-threatening, particularly in children ages 2 to 5 years. Called epiglottitis, this condition can impact breathing and is often caused by infection with the bacteria Haemophilus influenzae type b and should be treated with antibiotics, including a cephalosporin.

    If the cold leads to an ear infection, antibiotics may help resolve it if pain relievers and decongestants dont do the trick. Antibiotic use guidelines for children with ear infections differ based on their age and symptoms.

    How Should I Take Azithromycin

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    Take azithromycin 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. The dose and length of treatment may not be the same for every type of infection.

    You may take most forms of azithromycin with or without food.

    Take Zmax extended release liquid on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal.

    To use the oral suspension single dose packet: Open the packet and pour the medicine into 2 ounces of water. Stir this mixture and drink all of it right away. Do not save for later use. To make sure you get the entire dose, add 2 more ounces of water to the same glass, swirl gently and drink right away.

    Throw away any mixed Zmax oral suspension that has not been used within 12 hours. Throw away any immediate-release suspension that has not been used within 10 days.

    Shake the oral suspension well just before you measure a dose. 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.

    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. Azithromycin will not treat a viral infection such as the flu or a common cold.

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    Anyone Know How Long It Takes For Antibiotics To Clear A Chest Infection 8

    messylittlemonkey · 13/02/2011 16:46

    I’m on day three of a five day course of Amoxcycillin .I went down with flu almost a fortnight ago which started with a horrendous cough. Went through the various stages of feeling VERY unwell and saw GP after a week or so as was feeling so horrid.Anyway, I’m feeling generaly better in many ways, but GP said my chest sounded ‘bronchitic’ and prescribed ABs. I’m not sure how long they take to work, but would have thought 72 hours would have been long enough but my chest is still wheezing/rattling and painful on one side.does anyone know? Thanks 🙂

    mowbraygirl · 13/02/2011 18:23

    DH and I both have had the flu/virus with the horrendous cough. Mine went to my sinuses but DH to his chest. First lot of anti biotics Amoxcycillin gave him an allergic reaction was then put on Erythromycin. He finished the course a week ago but had a relapse early Saturday morning raging fever shaking all over very scary. I took him ot local Poly Clinic Saturday morning and Doctor we saw said he still had the infection and put him on a 10 day course of Ciprofloxacin which is a much stronger anti biotic. I would have thought that your chest would have been a bit better after 3 days so I would finish the course and then go back to your GP and hopefully they will give you soemthing stronger.

    Symptoms Of Atypical Pneumonia

    Atypical pneumonia is most commonly caused by mycoplasma, chlamydia, or a virus. It usually appears in children and young adults. Symptoms are usually mild and often go undiagnosed and untreated. Legionnaire disease, however, is a severe form of atypical pneumonia that usually strikes adults and seniors.

    The disease progresses gradually:

    • General flu-like symptoms often occur first. They may include fatigue, fever, weakness, headache, nasal discharge, sore throat, earache, and stomach and intestinal distress.
    • Vague pain under and around the breastbone may occur, but the severe chest pain associated with typical bacterial pneumonia is uncommon.
    • People may have a severe hacking cough, but it usually does not produce sputum.

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    Home Remedies For Chest Infection

    These home remedies may help ease the symptoms of your chest infection. Try these tips:

    • Take OTC medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen to lower your fever and help relieve any aches and pains.
    • Use OTC decongestants or expectorants to help loosen mucus and make it easier to cough up.
    • Be sure to get plenty of rest.
    • Drink lots of fluids. This keeps you hydrated and can loosen mucus, making it easier to cough up.
    • Avoid lying flat when sleeping. This can cause mucus to settle in your chest. Use extra pillows to elevate your head and chest at night.

    You can help prevent chest infections by following the tips below:

    • Make sure your hands are clean, particularly before eating or touching your face or mouth.
    • Eat a healthy well-balanced diet. This can help boost your immune system and make you less susceptible to infection.
    • Get vaccinated. Chest infections can develop following an infection such as influenza, for which theres a seasonal vaccine. You may also want to consider receiving the pneumococcal vaccine, which offers protection from pneumonia.
    • Avoid smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke.
    • Reduce the amount of alcohol that you consume.
    • If youre already ill, wash your hands frequently and be sure to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Dispose of any used tissues properly.

    How Is Pneumonia Treated

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    Pneumonia can be serious so its important to get treatment quickly. The main treatment for pneumonia is antibiotics, along with rest and drinking plenty of water. If you have chest pain, you can take pain killers such as paracetamol.

    Treatment depends on how severe your pneumonia is. Treatment with antibiotics should be started as soon as possible after diagnosis. If youre admitted to hospital, this should be within 4 hours of admission.

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