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What is azithromycin?

Azithromycin is a broad-spectrum antibiotic that is used to treat bacterial infections. It is usually taken orally as a tablet. This antibiotic has been used to treat bacterial infections such as chlamydia and other STIs. It is often prescribed as an alternative to patients who are allergic to penicillin.

Azithromycin tablets were first introduced under the trade name Zithromax by Pfizer Inc., who currently markets them under the brand names Zithromax and Zmax.

Click the yellow button above to complete our short medical form to order azithromycin treatment online. An online doctor will review your medical form to ensure it is the right treatment for you before it is dispensed and shipped to you.

What is Azithromycin used for?

Azithromycin is used to treat various bacterial infections that are caused by certain types of bacteria. These include:

  • respiratory tract infections (such as community-acquired pneumonia)
  • skin infections
  • pharyngitis
  • tonsillitis
  • genital ulcer
  • urethritis
  • cervicitis
  • acute bacterial sinusitis
  • lyme disease
  • sexually transmitted infections (such as chlamydia)
  • bacterial conjunctivitis, treated by using azithromycin eye drops

Azithromycin tablets are most commonly used to treat sexually transmitted infections (STI’s). Including:

The use of antibiotics will not help you with colds, flu, infectious diseases or other viral infections. If you use antibiotics when they are not needed, you will be more likely to develop an infection that is resistant to antibiotic treatment.

How does Azithromycin work?

Azithromycin, a semi-synthetic derivative of erythromycin, is a macrolide antibiotic naturally produced by Streptomyces bacteria. This drug breaks down the protein synthesis of bacteria. Azithromycin prevents bacteria from creating new cells by binding to their ribosomes. As a result, the bacteria stop multiplying and die.

How long does Azithromycin take to work?

Based on the infection being treated, the doctor will determine the duration and dosage of treatment. Take this medicine with or without food as directed by your doctor for your specific condition:

  • Chlamydia trachomatis: two 500mg tablets taken orally once as a single dose
  • Mycoplasma genitalium: a single dose of 1 g (2 tablets of 500mg) taken orally
  • Non-specific urethritis: a single dose of 1 g (2 tablets of 500mg) taken orally
  • Ureaplasma urealyticum: 500mg taken orally for 3-10 days
  • Uncomplicated gonorrhoea: a single dose of 2 g (4 tablets of 500mg) taken orally

You should follow your doctor's instructions regarding the duration of your treatment. Even if you feel better, you must continue taking this medication until the course has been completed. By stopping your treatment before it has been completed, your infection could return and it could increase the risk of antibiotic resistance.

How effective is azithromycin for chlamydia?

A review of 12 randomised clinical trials that investigated the use of azithromycin 1 gram (two tablets of azithromycin 500mg) as a treatment for chlamydia reported 97% cure rates. 97 out of 100 people with chlamydia can be cured if they take azithromycin.

How much azithromycin is needed to cure chlamydia?

Anyone who has a chlamydia infection should always discuss treatment with a doctor. The usual recommended dosage of azithromycin to treat Chlamydia is:

  • It is recommended that adults should take a single dose of azithromycin for chlamydia (two azithromycin 500mg tablets) once.

Even after taking two 500mg tablets of azithromycin for chlamydia, sexually active people need to avoid sexual activity for 7 days in order to avoid spreading the infection to their partners. Sexual partners must be also treated if they present symptoms. Re-testing after chlamydia treatment can detect repeat infections and prevent complications. Find out where and how you can get tested for STIs in the UK. You should consult your doctor if you continue to have persistent symptoms, such as pain during sex or pelvic pain.

How to take azithromycin?

Azithromycin comes as a tablet, an extended-release (long-acting) oral suspension, and a suspension (liquid) to take by mouth. Take azithromycin exactly as prescribed. Do not skip doses or stop taking it without talking to your doctor first.

  • The tablets should be taken at least two hours before meals or one hour after meals
  • Do not crush or chew the tablets
  • If you miss a dose, you should take it as soon as possible
  • Do not take a double dose to compensate for a missed dose

Who cannot use azithromycin tablets?

The following conditions may prevent someone from taking azithromycin:

  • myasthenia gravis
  • QT interval prolongation
  • cardiovascular (heart) problems
  • heart failure
  • kidney or liver problems
  • jaundice
  • low potassium levels in the blood

Tell your healthcare provider if you are allergic to azithromycin or any other medication.

You should also tell the healthcare professional prescribing you about all the medicines you take, including prescription drugs, vitamins, and herbal supplements. This is because some medicines can cause drug interactions and affect how well azithromycin works. This applies to the following especially:

  • digoxin (medication used to treat heart conditions)
  • clarithromycin (an antibiotic)
  • warfarin (blood thinner)
  • antacids with magnesium or aluminium
  • phenytoin (an anti-epileptic drug)
  • colchicine (medication for gout)

One of our registered doctors will review your medical details to make sure you can take azithromycin safely. So, it is important that you provide detailed information about your health.

Azithromycin and alcohol

Alcohol can be consumed while taking azithromycin. However, you might experience some adverse effects. As a result, you should limit your alcohol intake during treatment and refrain from drinking alcohol following your last dose.

Azithromycin and contraception

Taking azithromycin does not reduce the effectiveness of your contraceptive pill or patch. Contraceptive pills work by preventing ovulation, which prevents pregnancy, while this medication prevents bacteria from multiplying.

However, if the antibiotics or the illness being treated causes diarrhoea or vomiting, absorption of the contraceptive pill may be compromised. Make sure you check the information leaflet of your contraception for instructions on what to do if you experience vomiting or diarrhoea.

What are the side effects of azithromycin?

In general, azithromycin is safe to use. However, just as with other antibiotics, there may be some side effects. Whilst not everybody gets them, the most common side effects are mild and go away by themself once your body adjusts to treatment.

The most common side effects of azithromycin include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Reduced appetite
  • Diarrhoea
  • Headaches
  • Abdominal pain

If these symptoms persist or worsen, consult your doctor or healthcare provider.

Azithromycin can cause serious side effects, including:

  • Extreme drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Slurred speech
  • Severe abdominal pain
  • Bloody diarrhoea
  • Liver problems
  • Allergic reaction

People with any of these symptoms should stop taking azithromycin and should call their doctor or seek immediate medical attention.

Azithromycin has been associated with rare cases of serious heart rhythm abnormalities (arrhythmias). Tell your doctor right away if you experience chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath, fainting or other symptoms of heart problems.

Where can I buy azithromycin tablets online in the UK?

Azithromycin is available online as a prescription medicine in the UK. Fill out a quick health questionnaire to buy azithromycin online at euroClinix and our online doctors will provide the necessary prescription.

euroClinix is an online doctor and pharmacy that can be accessed from any device. You will never have to wait around in a GP surgery for hours before being seen. Order your prescription medication online today and have it delivered to your door. If you require any advice, you can get in touch with our customer service team five days a week.

How much does azithromycin cost in the UK?

You can find different prices for azithromycin depending on where you order it. If you order azithromycin online, you may get the generic medicine or the branded medicine called Zithromax at different prices.

In the UK, azithromycin is generally less expensive as a generic medicine. Generics are the same as brand-name drugs in terms of composition and dosage, and they have the exact same active ingredients.

Note: You must complete a short online consultation so that our doctor can ensure that the treatment is suitable for you. The above pricing should only be used as a reference. The final decision to issue this treatment lies with the prescribing doctor.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Caroline Fontana Written by our editorial team
Last reviewed 11-06-2022
Azithromycin information
Product nameAzithromycin
Active ingredient(s)Azithromycin
Trustpilot rating4.5/5
Trustpilot reviews149
AvailabilityIn stock
DescriptionAzithromycin is an antibiotic used in the treatment of genital infections like chlamydia, gonorrhoea and ureaplasma (when combined with cefixime)
ExemptionSubject to medical prescription
Available dosage250mg and 500mg
ApplicationMen and women over 18 with a bacterial infection
UsageTake 2 tablets together as a single dose
Drug classMacrolide antibiotics
Alcohol consumptionNo influence
When breastfeedingSide effects not expected, however ask your doctor
When pregnantNot expected, however ask your doctor
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