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Doxycycline is one of a group of medicines called tetracycline antibiotics, used to treat bacterial infections such as Chlamydia.


What is Doxycycline?


Doxycycline is a prescription-only antibiotic that is used to treat a variety of infections, including bacterial infections, skin infections, chest infections, dental infections and sexually transmitted infections. This includes Syphilis, Chlamydia and Gonorrhea. Some people also use this to prevent malaria when they’re travelling to malaria-infested areas. Other uses of this drug include the treatment of acne, anthrax and even tuleramia. 


Doxycycline belongs to a classification of medications and drugs that called tetracycline antibiotic. Apparently, they’re a class of broad-spectrum antibiotics that are reported to manage and treat various infectious diseases. Tetracyclines have three types of classifications: naturally occurring drugs, semi-synthetic tetracyclines, and a newer class of tetracyclines.


When it comes to tetracyclines, many drugs can be found under this classification. For naturally occurring drugs, you can find the following: tetracycline, demeclocycline, chlortetracycline and oxytetracycline. The second classification, semi-synthetic tetracyclines, are doxycycline, roliteracycline, minocycline, lymecycline, and metacycline. The newer class has the following: 

sarecycline, omadacycline and ervacycline. In this case, Doxycycline belongs to semi-synthetic tetracyclines.


Doxycycline is also known by its numerous brand names. This includes Vibramycin, Doxycin, Monodox, Acticlate, Avidoxy, Doxy, Atridox, Oracea, Adoxa, Ocudox, Periostat and Doryx MPC. The generic name is simply doxycycline. 


This medicine won’t work for viral infections which includes the flu or the common cold. 

It can come in various forms: capsules, delayed-release capsule, tablets, delayed-release tablet, syrup or powder for suspension. 


How does Doxycycline work?


Like all drugs, Doxycycline follows a specific process in order to treat the mildest infections down to the most severe ones. It treats and prevents various infections by restricting bacterial protein synthesis. It does this by binding itself to a ribosomal subunit. This prevents important amino acids from getting linked together. Bacteria isn’t able to function well without these proteins. As a bacteriostatic, Doxycycline stops the reproduction of bacteria. It doesn’t kill them instantaneously but weakens them enough that the body’s system is able to overcome them. 

Doxycycline is active against a wide range of bacteria. This includes some gran negative and positive bacteria, parasites such as the Entamoeba species and the Balantidium coli, and anaerobes. This makes it effective in treating various infections, most of which can be found in the sinuses, genitourinary area, respiratory tracts and even on the skin. 

Doxycycline is used to frequently treat the following infections: 


  • Tick-borne infections including typhus fever and Rocky Mountain Spotted fever
  • Genitourinary or eye infections caused by Chlamydia
  • Respiratory tract infections brought on by Mycoplasma pneumonia, Haemophilus influenza and Streptococcus pneumonia 
  • Syphilis 
  • Lyme disease
  • Plague 
  • Cholera
  • Brucellosis
  • Gonorrhea 
  • Acne 
  • Campylobacter
  • Penicillin (as an alternative drug)


What is the history of Doxycycline?


In the early1960s, the drug was invented and clinically developed by Pfizer Inc. Afterwards, it was marketed under the brand name Vibramycin. In 1967, it was approved by the FDA, making Doxycycline the Pfizer’s first once-a-day-broad-spectrum antibiotic. Then in 1994, the indication that Doxycycline can be used as a malaria prophylaxis was obtained. Accordingly, the entire drug class of tetracyclines was reported to be effective in treating and preventing malaria, especially in malaria-endemic places. An early study has also indicated that out of the following—minocycline, tetracycline and doxycycline—the third option, Doxycycline, was the most effective as an antimalarial.


Who can and can’t take Doxycycline? 


Doxycycline isn’t suitable for everybody. It can bring with it certain side-effects that not everybody may be able to handle. Moreover, it can interfere with other drugs that some people are already taking to address specific health issues. This is why Doxycycline is most suitable for adults aged 18 to 60. 

Below are the indications that you are not suitable for Doxycycline: 


  • If you have had an allergic reaction to Doxycycline or other drugs in the past. 
  • If you have had kidney problems. 
  • If you have had liver problems. 
  • If you have an inflamed food pipe aka oesophagitis. 
  • If you have lupus, which is an autoimmune disease.
  • If you have myasthenia gravis, which is an illness that causes you to have severe muscle wasting. 
  • If you are trying to get pregnant, pregnant or breastfeeding.


It has been reported that Doxycycline can pass onto breast milk. This is why it’s important for mothers or expecting mothers not to take Doxycycline. Accordingly, it might affect tooth and bone development in an infant. 


Children younger than 8 years old shouldn’t take this medication as well because it can affect their teeth, leading to permanent yellowing or graying. However, in the case of anthrax or Rocky Mountain spotted fever, children can be allowed to take Doxycycline to treat severe or life-threatening conditions. 


What are the benefits of taking Doxycycline?


Bacterial infections can prove to be extremely dangerous if left untreated. Depending on the infection that you’ve contracted, your body can undergo an extreme reaction. In the case of sexually transmitted infections such as Chlamydia, you might not experience any symptoms at first. However, if this goes untreated, then the infection might spread to the rest of your body. This can cause further inflammation and permanent damage to the reproductive system, which can eventually lead to infertility. 


It’s important to look out for the signs that your body is displaying. Bacterial infections can heed symptoms that might be easy to brush off, such as a fever, fatigue, headaches or even swollen lymph nodes in the groin, armpits or in the neck. But if left untreated, these can lead to disastrous results, such as the life-threatening condition called sepsis. 

To treat various infections, people take Doxycycline. As such, Doxycycline is extremely effective in providing the necessary treatment for people afflicted with infections. It’s also important to stick with the treatment schedule because if you stop suddenly, then there’s a possibility that the infection will return, more vicious than ever. 


What are the side-effects of taking Doxycycline?


Because medicine or drugs can pose chemical or synthetic changes in your body, you can expect certain side-effects to happen to you. It’s not guaranteed that everybody gets these side-effects but they are the most common ones that have been reported. In the case of Doxycycline, the following are expected side-effects that may or may not occur to you:


  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Sensitivity to sunlight


More serious and severe side-effects have also been reported by some patients. In this case, it’s best not to wait around if the side-effects will get better or get worse. You should immediately call the doctor if you experience the following:


  • Easy bruising or bleeding 
  • Sore throat 
  • Diarrhea 
  • Ringing or buzzing in the ears
  • Pale stool with dark pee
  • Yellowish skin 
  • Joint or muscle pains 
  • Severe headaches
  • Fingernails falling out of the base 
  • Sore or swollen mouth, tongue or lips 
  • Severe stomach pains 
  • Difficulty in swallowing 
  • Acid reflux 
  • A small appetite 


Additionally, some people have reported experiencing a serious allergic reaction to Doxycycline. If you start experiencing skin rashes, tightness in the chest or throat, wheezing, difficulty in breathing and swelling of the face, lips, tongue or throat, then you should immediately call the doctor. You can also ask somebody to take you to the hospital to save time.


How do you cope with the side-effects of Doxycycline?


Sometimes, it can be difficult to endure the side-effects of Doxycycline. But there are other remedies you can take to continue with the treatment. Here is a guide to help you cope with the side-effects of Doxycycline: 


  • For headaches;


In experiencing painful headaches, you can rest in your bed and drink plenty of fluids to regain your strength. You can also take ibuprofen or paracetamol alongside Doxycycline to lessen the pain you’re feeling. 


  • For nausea or vomiting;


If you’re feeling sick and have been vomiting constantly, then you should stick to simple meals that don’t have rich or spicy food. You should also take your daily intake of Doxycycline after a meal or a light snack. Don’t eat any dairy products such as yoghurt, chees or milk as they can stop your body from fully absorbing the medicine properly. It’s important to stay hydrated so you must drink plenty of fluids. You can drink water or eat squash to stay hydrated. Look out for the signs of dehydration, such as peeing less or having a pungent pee. You might think to drink medicines or drugs that will stop you from vomiting but you must inform your doctor or pharmacist if this is the best option for you. 

  • For sensitivity to sunlight;


When you leave the house, make sure to bring sunglasses or clothes that can cover your vision from the sun. It also helps to apply a layer of sunblock or sunscreen on your skin. Make sure it has a sun protection factor aka SPF of at least 15. If you have fairer skin, then you might need a higher level of SPF. Don’t forget to apply some on your lips as you might be more prone to having chapped lips. 


How do you take Doxycycline? 


When you’ve been given your prescription, then your doctor or pharmacist will give you a list of instructions that you need to follow carefully and thoroughly. It’s important to take the recommended dosage, no larger or smaller or for longer than what has been recommended. If you don’t, then you might experience dire consequences. Normally, this medicine is taken once or twice a day.


Doxycycline is best taken with a full glass of water. You should be hydrated when taking this drug. Also some brands of Doxycycline instruct the ones taking it to have a snack or a full meal. However, be warmed that taking it with food or milk will decrease its effects as the amount of medication absorbed from your stomach will be affected. Doxycycline is known for its gastrointestinal side-effects, which is why it’s important to keep drinking water under its influence. This is also the reason why many people experience an upset stomach.


This prescription-only medication can come in regular capsules. You can open one up and sprinkle them into applesauce or other flavors to make it easier to swallow. If you want to swallow it whole, make sure not to chew it. It’s also not recommended to set aside some mixture for later. Afterwards, drink a full glass of water to rehydrate yourself.


Instructions will differ when you have a delayed-release capsule or tablet. It is not recommended to crush, break or even open one. You should swallow the capsule whole with a glass of water. Some Doxycycline tablets need to be split to get the correct dosage. 


Doxycycline can also come as a liquid medicine. When preparing for your dosage, don’t use a kitchen spoon. Instead, you should be provided with a dosing syringe that will give you the right dosage. If you don’t have one, then you should ask your pharmacist to provide you one. 

Once you’ve taken Doxycycline, the medicine is quickly absorbed. After two to three hours, you will feel the peak effects. But it may take up to two days for you to see the effects it will have on any infection-related symptoms. 


If you cannot take this medicine by mouth, then it can be given by injection. This usually happens in the hospital or at the clinic. A healthcare provider will inject you the medicine via infusion into a vein. 

When entering malaria-endemic places, then you should start taking Doxycycline a day or two days before you enter the area. Make sure to keep taking the medication throughout your entire stay. When you leave the place, keep taking it for at least four weeks. However, don’t rely solely on Doxycycline. You should also use protective clothing and insect repellents once you’re in the area where malaria is common. You can even hang a mosquito netting around your bed as this will stop or prevent the mosquitos from biting you and inflicting you with malaria. 


What is the right dosage of Doxycycline for you?


The dosage depends entirely on what you’re taking Doxycycline for. The medicine has an active ingredient called doxycycline hyclate which is available in dosages of 100mg per tablet or capsule. Make sure to inform your doctor of your current ailments so that they can provide you with the right dosage. 


To treat sexually transmitted diseases such as Chlamydia, a 100mg of Doxycycline should be taken twice a day every day for the next 7 to 10 days. If you forget to take a dose, then you should take it as soon as you remember it. However, this is not the case if you only remember the missed dosage just in time for the next one. When this happens, just skip the missed dosage and continue with scheduled one. Never take two dosages to compensate for what you’ve missed as this can pose dangerous effects to your body.


How do you properly store and dispose of this medication?


Doxycycline is kept in a container where it should remain tightly closed and out of reach from children. Make sure that it is stored at room temperature where it won’t be directly affected by excess heat and moisture. The container can easily be opened by a child which is why it’s important to keep it in a high shelf where children cannot reach it. 

Sometimes, you’re left with extra medicines that you won’t need anymore. When disposing of Doxycycline, make sure that the remaining tablets or capsules won’t be accidentally eaten by pets, children or other people you’re living with. Don’t throw it away or flush them down the toilet. Instead, you have another option which will be benefit everybody. You can dispose of your medication by entering a medicine take-back program in your community. 


What other drugs interfere with Doxycycline? 


When you are prescribed with Doxycycline, it’s important to inform your doctor if you’re taking other drugs and medicines to treat other illnesses or medical conditions. Not all medicines mix well with each other as they either interfere with the desired effects or make things worse for you. Some medicines can increase the side-effects or even affect the longevity of Doxycycline. If you’re taking the following medicines, then inform your doctor: 


  • Indigestion remedies
  • Supplements containing calcium, magnesium, aluminum, bismuth or zinc
  • Iron supplements
  • Other antibiotics 
  • Warfarin which is a blood thinner 
  • Acne medicines containing vitamin A 
  • Medicines to treat epilepsy which includes carbamazepine or phenytoin 
  • Ciclosporin which damps down your immune system


Where do you purchase Doxycycline online? 


Doxycycline can be found in the local pharmacy. You can refer to it by its brand names, such as Vibramycin, Doxycin, Monodox, Acticlate, Avidoxy, Doxy, Atridox, Oracea, Adoxa, Ocudox, Periostat and Doryx MPC. Don’t forget that you need to present a prescription first before you can purchase the medicine. 


However, due to the pandemic happening right now, it may not be advisable to leave your home for quick visit to the supermarket or the pharmacy. Therefore, some virtual pharmacies have opened up to provide easy packaging and shipping of your medicines. But they also require a prescription. If, for whatever reason, you cannot go to the clinic or hospital for a quick check-up, you can always settle for an online consultation. 


The online consultation can give you the prescription that you need, making it easier for you to present it to a virtual pharmacy. Then you can indicate how many packages you need and have it shipped right at your doorstep. Be wary of online stores that might give you counterfeit medicine. Taking counterfeit medicine can lead to disastrous results so you need to find an online store that is reliable and legal. 


What are other alternatives to Doxycycline? 


Medicine can be expensive, even if they are generic. For some, branded Doxycycline is out of the question. The generic one is also too expensive for them. Because of Doxycycline can treat a wide range of bacterial infections, it has become the most popular choice. Therefore, it has a higher demand. With higher demand comes higher prices. As a result, many people are looking for alternatives that will be easier on their pocket. 

Doxycycline belongs to a drug class called tetracycline antibiotic. This means you have many choices and alternatives to choose from if Doxycycline is too expensive for you. Based on your current health issue, your doctor might recommend the following options for the following health issues:


For acne and rosacea;

  • Erythromycin
  • Minocycline
  • Azithromycin 


For Chlamydia and Gonorrhea;

  • Azithromycin


For urinary tract infections; 

  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Cephalexin
  • Sulfamethoxazole or trimethoprim
  • Nitrofurantoin


For Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever;

  • Cefuroxime axetil
  • Amoxicillin


Please note: this page is only to be used as a reference of our price for this medication. If you are approved for Sexual Health medication, you will be offered treatment for you and the prescriber to jointly consider. However, the final decision will always be the prescriber's.
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