Oxytetracycline is predominantly used for treating acne and rosacea. It can also be used to effectively treat bacterial infections including pneumonia, bronchitis, mycoplasma and some types of sexually transmitted infections. It may also be given for infections caused by fleas, ticks or mites.
Oxytetracycline works by stopping bacteria from spreading, therefore halting an infection or breakout in its tracks. It is particularly effective against a type of bacteria called Propionebacterium acnes which cause spots to form on the skin. This bacteria irritates the sebaceous glands which produce oil known as sebum, causing breakouts and inflammation. Oxytetracycline works against these bacteria to stop this from happening, eventually reducing the appearance of acne spots and redness.
Oxytetracycline won't have an immediate effect on your skin. It will take several weeks to start to work and you'll usually take it for up to three months.
Oxytetracycline can be used for all types of acne. It is an oral medication so it will treat any area affected by the bacteria causing acne. If you have severe acne and antibiotic treatment does not work then you may be referred to a dermatologist to find a suitable alternative.
Oxytetracycline dihydrate is the active ingredient contained in the medicine.
The inactive ingredients in Oxytetracycline are Lactose, Pregelatinised Starch, Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, Gelatin, Magnesium Stearate, Talc, Sugar, Titanium Dioxide, Aluminium Hydroxide and Tartrazine (E102), Shellac, Beeswax and Carnauba Wax.
Please Note: Different brands of generic Oxytetracycline may contain different inactive ingredients.
Oxytetracycline should be taken one hour before food and be swallowed whole with water. If you're taking 2 tablets a day then take them at least 6 hours apart and avoid taking it just before going to bed. It's advisable to avoid too much direct exposure to sunlight or UVA light while taking the medicine.
Oxytetracycline is taken twice a day, each tablet containing a dose of 250mg. The dose may be higher to treat bacterial infections. Always follow the advice given by your doctor about how much to take and how often.
The usual treatment period for acne is three months. Keep taking Oxytetracycline for the length of time your doctor has prescribed unless they tell you otherwise. This may vary depending on which condition you are being treated for.
Common side effects include:
Less common side effects may include:
If you experience any of these symptoms then consult your doctor for advice.
You should not take Oxytetracycline if:
Inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following medicines:
One of the possible side effects of Oxytetracycline is photosensitivity. This is where your skin develops an increased sensitivity to the sunlight which may develop into a rash. Certain medications which have this effect are known as photosensitisers. Not everyone will experience this while taking Oxytetracycline and fair skinned individuals are more susceptible to it. Wearing sunscreen, covering up and avoiding prolonged exposure to the sun can help to manage this potential side effect.
Drinking alcohol does not have an effect on Oxytetracycline. However, if you are experiencing an upset stomach as a result of taking the antibiotic, drinking alcohol can make this worse.
Oxytetracycline should not be used during pregnancy unless specifically advised by your doctor.
Oxytetracycline does not interfere with the contraceptive pill so you can keep taking it as usual. However, if you experience vomiting or diarrhoea as a result of taking the medication then your contraception may be affected. If this happens you will need to use an additional method of contraception for up to 7 days after your sickness stops.
Oxytetracycline is an effective treatment for moderate acne which has not responded to creams or gels alone. There are other topical antibiotic treatments available on prescription which are applied directly to the skin alongside Benzoyl Peroxide and retinoids like Adapalene which can be used in conjunction with oral antibiotics. The combined contraceptive pill is commonly prescribed to women in good health as it can help to combat acne. If a course of antibiotics has not worked then you may be prescribed with Co-cyprindiol or Isotretinoin.
While you are taking Oxytetracycline there are several things you can do to help improve your skin. These include eating a healthy diet rich in vitamins and minerals, drinking plenty of water to hydrate the skin and exercising to flush out toxins. Maintaining a good skincare routine can also help to ensure excess oil is cleansed away.
You can still wear makeup while taking Oxytetracycline to improve your skin. However, it is recommended that you avoid oil based cosmetics which clog your pores as this can exacerbate spots and cause them to flare up even more. Ensure you stick to a good skincare routine, always taking off your makeup before going to bed at night.
Skin products will not interfere with Oxytetracycline so you can still use them as normal. You may want to avoid products which are overly oily, sticking to light moisturisers, as the excess oil may clog up your pores and slow down the effects of Oxytetracycline in healing your acne.
Oxytetracycline is an antibiotic which treats acne so it will not return after you complete your course of the medication. If you stop the treatment early then it may not work as effectively, leaving the bacteria intact so that they continue to multiply and cause spots. You should always keep taking Oxytetracycline for the prescribed length of time or until your doctor tells you to stop.
Oxytetracycline should be taken on an empty stomach, preferably one hour or more before eating. This is because the tablets are not absorbed by the body correctly when they are taken around the same as eating and drinking milk, meaning they will be less effective at fighting off infection and clearing up acne. You can still take them with water or at least two hours after food.
Oxytetracycline can also be used to treat rosacea, a skin condition which produces facial flushing, redness and small red bumps. The medication will usually be prescribed for a course of 4-6 weeks.
Oxytetracycline is an antibiotic which is effective in the treatment of acne and rosecea.