Clarithromycin - Use | Dose | Side Effects

Clarithromycin belongs to a group of medicines called antibiotics. Antibiotics stop the growth of bacteria that cause infection. Clarithromycin are film-coated medicines with extended release, which means that the medicine release from film-coated tablets slowly in the body. Therefore this medicament with sustained release applied only once a day.

Clarithromycin is used to treat

  • lung infections such as bronchitis and pneumonia;
  • Infection of the throat and sinuses;
  • mild to moderately severe infections of the skin and soft tissues, such as:
    • folliculitis (inflammation of the hair root),
    • cellulitis (inflammation of the subcutaneous tissue) and erysipelas (erysipelas is a skin infection characterized by redness of the skin).

DO NOT use this medicine if

  • If you think you are allergic to clarithromycin or any other medicine in the class of macrolides such is erythromycin and azithromycin or to any other ingredient of the Clarithromycin;
  • If you are already taking any of these medicines:
    • terfenadine,
    • astemizole (used to treat allergies),
    • cisapride or pimozide, because these medicines in certain cases can cause serious cardiac arrhythmias;
  • Simultaneously with ergotamine or dihydroergotamine;
  • If you have some problems with the kidneys, ie. If you creatinine clearance less than 30 mL / min.

Warnings and Precautions

  • If you have any liver problems or kidney disease, consult your doctor before applying this medicine.
  • Tell your doctor if you have stomach problems and diarrhea during this medicine use.
  • Do not simultaneously apply Clarithromycin and medicine colchicine (used to treat gout - inflammation of the joints) because it can caused serious side effects.
  • You should know that if you are prolonged taking Clarithromyci it may develop resistance in bacteria that cause infections. If there are new infections (superinfection) Your doctor will stop giving you the prescription for this medicine and he will give you appropriate therapy.
  • Do not use this medication if you have any of these rare inherited disorders metabolism, such as fructose intolerance, glucose-galactose malabsorption or sucrase-isomaltase insufficiency.

Pay attention if you take other medicines

Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking any of the following medicines:

  • Digoxin, quinidine, disopyramide (applied in the treatment of heart disease);
  • Warfarin or other medicines for blood dilution;
  • Ergotamine and dihydroergotamine (for migraine);
  • carbamazepine, valproate, or phenytoin (applied for the treatment of epilepsy);
  • Theophylline (to help with breathing difficulties);
  • Terfenadine or astemizole (used to treat allergies);
  • Triazolam, diazepam or midazolam (medicines tranquilizers);
  • Cilostazol (for poor circulation);
  • simvastatinĀ or lovastatin (used to treat high cholesterol);
  • Cisapride (used to treat stomach disorders);
  • Cyclosporine (used to prevent rejection of transplanted organs);
  • methylprednisolone (a corticosteroid);
  • Vinblastine (to treat cancer);
  • Sildenafil (for impotence);
  • Pimozide (used to treat mental illness);
  • Zidovudine (a medicine used to control HIV infection);
  • Rifabutin (for treating tuberculosis);
  • tacrolimus (for organ transplants);
  • Ritonavir (an anti-HIV medicine).

Clarithromycin may also apply with birth control pills. Tell your doctor or pharmacist about all the medicines you are taking, or medicines that you buy without a prescription and the medicines prescribed by your doctor.

Medicines use during pregnancy and breastfeeding

Before you start to apply some medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist.


If you are pregnant do not take this medicine if you have not previously consulted with your doctor, because the safe use of this medicine during pregnancy has not been established.


This medication passes into breast milk. If you are breastfeeding you should not take Clarithromycin before you consult with your doctor, as security application of this product in nursing mothers has not been established.

The effect of this medicine on the management of motor vehicles and machinery operation

It is unlikely that this medicine affects on the ability to drive and use machines.

Medicines use


Adults: The usual recommended dose is 500 mg per day. Usual duration of therapy is 7 to 14 days. In case of severe forms of infection, your doctor may increase the dose to two medicines 1,000 mg per day. Clarithromycin should take with a meal, do not chew, swallow whole!

Children older than 12 years: Applied dose is same as in adults.

Children under 12 years: This medicine is not intended for use in children under the age of 12.

Dosage in patients with impaired renal function: Clarithromycin is not adapted for use in patients with renal impairment (Creatinine clearance less than 30 mL / min).


If you apply more than the prescribed dose, consult your doctor or pharmacist!

If you forget to take the medicine

If you forget to take medication, do not use twice of the medicine amount later, but continue to take medicine according to the usual schedule. Take the missed dose as soon as possible and continue next day with application of the medicine at the usual time and suitably. Do not take higher dose of the medicine during the day than your doctor recommended.

If you stop taking this medicine

Apply this medicine for as long as prescribed by the doctor. Do not stop taking this medicine if you feel better. It is important to take Clarithromycin as many days as ordered by your doctor, because it would otherwise infection could recur.

Side effects

Clarithromycin can sometimes cause stomach symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain or diarrhea. Sometimes it can occur numbness, tingling or burning in some parts of the body. Headache, pain in joints and muscles and reduced muscle mass, are also recorded. If you have a severe and long-lasting diarrhea occurring during or after taking this medicine, immediately contact your doctor. Blood tests may show elevated levels of liver enzymes, if you have this test done during this medicent application. Usually enzymes return to normal value, so you probably will not feel any symptoms of these changes. However, rarely it can cause the appearance of jaundice and other liver diseases that can be serious and in rare cases with fatal outcome. If you notice yellowing of your skin and / or whites of the eye, immediately notify doctor. There were also problems with the kidneys, including the appearance of protein in the urine, and very rarely renal failure. Occasionally, blood tests can show a reduction in the number of white blood cells. During the application of Clarithromycin was observed phenomena allergic reactions and rashes. In very rare cases can occur: difficulty in breathing, fainting, and swelling of the face and throat which requires urgent medical treatment. Allergic reactions by severity can range from mild itching and rashes to rare very serious conditions such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome (severe disease with the appearance of sores on the skin and mucous membrane of the mouth), and toxic epidermal necrolysis (severe disease and skin rash and mucous membranes). Patients who take Clarithromycin can sometimes feel a strange taste in the mouth, and the change of taste and smell. However, you should not stop taking the medicine because these are only transient changes. A very rare occurrence that discolor teeth, but in most cases, this problem can be solved with professional dental cleaning by a dentist. There are reports that Clarithromycin cause swelling and darkening of the tongue, inflammation and fungal infection in the mouth. Also, there may be dizziness, loss of balance, confusion, ringing in the ears, insomnia, sensory deception (hallucinations), nightmares, loss of sense of reality and fear. However, the above action medicine are short lived. Although very rare, due to low blood sugar occurs fatigue and changes in mood and behavior in severe cases requiring hospitalization patient. Sometimes, the patients in the skin may occur in case of unexpected bruising cuts difficult to stop the bleeding. A very rare occurrence of inflammation of the eye, usually in patients who concomitant medicine rifabutin. However, only very rarely observed changes in heart rhythm, inflammation of the pancreas, and muscle cramps. During the application of clarithromycin was recorded and hearing loss, which is transient and gradually withdraws after discontinuation of the medicine. Most of people do not feel neither side effects. If you have any of the symptoms become troublesome, or notice something else not listed here, please contact your doctor. Perhaps, your doctor will then decide to give you another medicine.

Information on this website are provided for educational purposes only and are not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional.