Ilosone

Common uses

Treating infections caused by certain bacteria. It is also used to prevent bacterial endocarditis and attacks of rheumatic fever. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Erythromycin is a macrolide antibiotic. Macrolide antibiotics slow the growth of, or sometimes kill, sensitive bacteria by reducing the production of important proteins needed by the bacteria to survive.

Before using

Do not take this medication if you are allergic to erythromycin, or if you are taking any of the following medicines:
• astemizole (Hismanal);
• cisapride (Propulsid);
• pimozide (Orap); or
• terfenadine (Seldane).
Erythromycin may interact with these medicines and could cause dangerous or life-threatening heart rhythm disorders.
Before taking erythromycin, tell your doctor if you have liver disease or myasthenia gravis. You may not be able to take erythromycin, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.
FDA pregnancy category B: This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Erythromycin can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Directions

Use Erythromycin as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
• Take Erythromycin by mouth with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
• Swallow Erythromycin whole. Do not break, crush, or chew before swallowing.
• Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you use Erythromycin.
• Erythromycin works best if taken at the same times each day.
• To clear up your infection completely, take Erythromycin for the full course of treatment. Keep taking it even if you feel better in a few days.
• If you miss a dose of Erythromycin , take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Erythromycin.

Cautions

Do not use this medication if you are allergic to erythromycin, or if you are also taking astemizole (Hismanal), cisapride (Propulsid), pimozide (Orap), or terfenadine (Seldane). Erythromycin may interact with these medicines and could cause dangerous or life-threatening heart rhythm disorders.
Before taking erythromycin, tell your doctor if you have liver disease or myasthenia gravis. You may not be able to take erythromycin, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.
Do not crush, chew, break, or open an enteric-coated or delayed-release pill. Swallow the pill whole. The enteric-coated pill has a special coating to protect your stomach. Breaking the pill could damage this coating. The delayed-release pill is specially made to release medicine slowly in the body. Breaking the pill would cause too much of the drug to be released at one time. Avoid exposure to sunlight or artificial UV rays (sunlamps or tanning beds). Erythromycin can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight and sunburn may result. Use a sunscreen (minimum SPF 15) and wear protective clothing if you must be out in the sun.
Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or has blood in it, call your doctor. Do not use any medicine to stop the diarrhea unless your doctor has told you to.
Take this medication for as many days as it has been prescribed for you even if you begin to feel better. Your symptoms may get better before the infection is completely treated. Erythromycin will not treat a viral infection such as the common cold or flu.

Possible side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using erythromycin and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
• chest pain, uneven heartbeats, feeling light-headed or fainting;
• nausea, stomach pain, low fever, lost appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
• diarrhea that is watery or bloody.
Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue taking erythromycin and talk with your doctor if you have any of these less serious side effects:
• mild nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or stomach pain;
• dizziness, headache, feeling tired;
• vaginal itching or discharge; or
• mild itching or skin rash.
Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

If you take too much

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.
Symptoms of an erythromycin overdose may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, or hearing loss.

Additional information

Avoid exposure to sunlight or artificial UV rays (sunlamps or tanning beds). Erythromycin can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight and sunburn may result. Use a sunscreen (minimum SPF 15) and wear protective clothing if you must be out in the sun.
Antibiotic medicines can cause diarrhea, which may be a sign of a new infection. If you have diarrhea that is watery or has blood in it, call your doctor. Do not use any medicine to stop the diarrhea unless your doctor has told you to.

Drug interactions

Before taking erythromycin, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:
• digoxin (Lanoxin);
• sildenafil (Viagra);
• disopyramide (Norpace);
• warfarin (Coumadin);
• theophylline (Theo-Dur, Theobid, and others);
• alprazolam (Xanax) or triazolam (Halcion);
• ergotamine (Ercaf, Cafergot, Ergostat, Ergomar) or dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal);
• carbamazepine (Tegretol), phenytoin (Dilantin), or valproic acid (Depakote, Depakene);
• tacrolimus (Prograf);
• cyclosporine (Sandimmune, Neoral);
• lovastatin (Mevacor) or simvastatin (Zocor);
• bromocriptine (Parlodel);
• cilostazol (Pletal);
• quinidine (Quinaglute, Quinidex);
• vinblastine (Velban); or
• other antibiotics.
If you are using any of these drugs, you may not be able to take erythromycin, or you may need dosage adjustments or special tests during treatment.
There may be other drugs not listed that can affect erythromycin. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.