Doxycycline is used to treat certain bacterial infections of the nose, lung, skin, stomach and bladder.
This medicine is also used to treat sexually-transmitted diseases (STD) such as syphilis and gonorrhoea.
It may also be used together with other medicines to treat and prevent malaria.
Take Doxycycline exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
You may take this medicine with or without food. Take it with a full glass of water or milk while sitting or standing upright. Do not lie down within half an hour after taking it.
Doxycycline is available as a tablet, capsule, delayed-release tablet or capsule, oral syrup or suspension.
If you are taking the modified-release type of tablet or capsule (may be labelled “ER”), swallow it whole. Do not divide, chew or crush the tablet or capsule.
If you are taking an oral syrup or suspension, shake the bottle well before you take it to ensure that the liquid is evenly mixed. Use the measuring spoon or cup provided to measure out your prescribed dose.
Take Doxycycline at regular intervals. Complete the entire course of medicine.
The dose of Doxycycline will be decided by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the treatment timeframe depending on the type and severity of your infection.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Do not take Doxycycline if you ever had an allergic reaction (rashes, breathlessness, swollen mouth or eyes) to similar medicines such as tetracycline.
Do not take this medicine if you are pregnant or planning to have a baby soon. If you become pregnant while being treated with Doxycycline, alert your doctor immediately. This medicine may cause harm to your unborn child.
Do not breastfeed while you are being treated with this medicine.
Do not give Doxycycline to children below 12 years old unless instructed to do so by the doctor.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- kidney disease
- liver disease
- porphyria (an inherited disorder that may cause skin or nerve problems)
- systemic lupus erythematosus (autoimmune disorder that causes inflammation)
- myasthenia gravis (muscle weakness disorder)
Doxycycline may cause your skin to be more sensitive to sunlight. Avoid direct and long hours of exposure to the sun and other forms of ultraviolet (UV) light like tanning beds or sun lamps.
If you are being treated with Doxycycline for STD, you should follow your doctor's advise on ways to prevent passing the disease to others. You should also avoid sexual contact until the doctor certifies that you are cleared from the infection.
If you are being treated with this medicine for malaria, you must also take preventive measures to avoid mosquito bites. Use an effective insect repellent. Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants. Avoid going out between dusk to dawn.
Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly. Routine blood tests, liver and kidney tests maybe needed while you are being treated with Doxycycline.
Doxycycline may cause any of the following side effects: diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting and stomach pain or discomfort. If you have diarrhoea, drink lots of water to replace the fluids lost.
If you develop rashes, breathlessness, swollen mouth or eyes, stop taking the medicine and inform your doctor quickly. These could be signs of an allergic reaction.
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- other antibiotics e.g. penicillin
- inhaled anaesthetic (medicines used to block sensitivity to pain) e.g. methoxyflurane
- blood-thinning medicines e.g. warfarin
- medicines for epilepsy (fits or seizures) e.g. phenytoin, phenobarbital, carbamazepine
- medicines used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders e.g. ciclosporin
- medicines to treat TB e.g. rifampicin
This medicine should not be taken at the same time with antacids (medicines to neutralise stomach acids) that contain aluminium, calcium, or magnesium, or any medicines that contains iron, zinc or bismuth. These may reduce the effectiveness of Doxycycline.
Inform your doctor if you are currently taking birth control pills. This medicine may reduce the effectiveness of birth control pills. You should not stop or start any birth control pills without first informing your doctor. Ask your doctor about using non-hormonal birth control as an alternative while being treated with this medicine.
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Doxycycline.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Do not take Doxycycline with dairy products such as milk, cheese, yoghurt or ice-cream. These could reduce the effectiveness of Doxycycline. Take Doxycycline at least 2 hours before or after you have taken any dairy products.
Store in a cool, dry place, away from the reach of children. Protect from light and moisture.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.