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Information about Clarithromycin

Clarithromycin is a semisynthetic macrolide antibiotic used for a wide variety of mild-to-moderate bacterial infections.


Liver safety of Clarithromycin

Clarithromycin has been linked to rare instances of acute liver injury that can be severe and even fatal.

Mechanism of action of Clarithromycin

Clarithromycin (kla rith" roe mye' sin) is a semisynthetic macrolide antibiotic used widely to treat mild-to-moderate bacterial infections caused by sensitive agents. Clarithromycin, like other macrolide antibiotics such such as eythromycin and azithromycin, is bacteriostatic against many gram positive bacteria including many strains of streptococci, staphylococci, clostridia, corynebacteria, listeria, haemophilus sp., moxicella, and Neisseria meningitidis. Clarithromycin is also active against Chlamydia pneumoniae, Helicobacter pylori, and several atypical mycobacteria. Macrolide antibiotics act by inhibiting protein synthesis of bacteria by binding to the 50S ribosomal element. Resistance occurs by several mechanisms.

FDA approval information for Clarithromycin

Clarithromycin was approved for use in the United States in 1993, and currently more than 3 million prescriptions are filled yearly. Typical indications are for upper respiratory infections, bronchitis, sinusitis, community acquired pneumonia, and skin and tissue infections. Clarithromycin is also used for infections caused by Chlamydia pneumoniae, Helicobacter pylori and atypical mycobacteria.

Dosage and administration for Clarithromycin

Clarithromycin is available in tablets of 250 and 500 mg generically under several commercial names including Biaxin, Claripen and Clacid. Extended release formulations are also available. The typical course is 250 to 500 mg twice daily (or 1000 mg extended release tablets once daily) for 7 to 14 days. Clarithromycin is given chronically in some situations such as prophylaxis against mycobacterium avium complex in patients with HIV infection.

Side effects of Clarithromycin

Clarithromycin is generally well tolerated, but side effects can include nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, dyspepsia, headache, dizziness, angioedema and rash.

The following are macrolides

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