Who Can Use Amoxicillin for Chlamydia: Dosage, Side Effects, and More

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What is Amoxicillin?

Amoxicillin is an antibiotic used to deal with many bacterial infections. This drug is a penicillin-type antibiotic that fights bacteria by limiting its growth in the body.

Amoxicillin treats ailments such as bronchitis, pneumonia, and tonsillitis, including throat, nose, skin, ear, or urinary tract diseases caused by bacteria. This drug cures infection by limiting the bacteria from creating cell walls. This restricts the growth of the bacteria, ultimately killing it and treating the infection.

Amoxicillin will not work for infections caused by viruses like cold or flu. In addition, you can use amoxicillin for chlamydia in pregnant women and other drugs to treat intestinal/stomach ulcers.

For instance, amoxicillin is sometimes combined with another antibiotic known as clarithromycin to treat stomach ulcers caused by bacteria H. pylori and lansoprazole- a stomach acid reducer. This drug can come in tablets, capsules, or in oral suspension form.

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What to know about chlamydia

Chlamydia is caused by bacteria refered to as Chlamydia Trachomatis. This infection is a sexually transmitted disease spread by transferring bodily fluids through sexual activities from one infected person to another.

As one of the most reported sexually transmitted infections in the US, Chlamydia usually doesn’t cause any apparent symptoms. Therefore, people can have chlamydia for a long time without being aware, unknowingly infecting more people with the disease.

Statistically, the CDC estimates the percentage of male and female carriers of the infection to be around 50% and 75%, respectively. Similarly, about 40% to 96% of infected people show no symptoms of Chlamydia Trachomatis infection.

 Regular testing is recommended for sexually active young people

Chlamydia can stay dormant for years without causing any flare-up or triggering symptoms, so sexually active people are advised to test for STDs regularly. If not treated, chlamydia can cause severe health complications like ectopic pregnancy, genital bleeding, or infertility in men. In addition, this infection can also damage a woman’s reproductive system.

Does amoxicillin for chlamydia work?

Chlamydia Trachomatis is an infection that is cured by antibiotics. The most commonly recommended antibiotics for chlamydia are doxycycline and azithromycin. Similarly, the CDC also recommends alternative Chlamydia treatment options such as erythromycin, levofloxacin, or ofloxacin. However, that amoxicillin is an antibiotic doesn’t necessarily mean that the drug is effective against chlamydia.

Amoxicillin is not the preferred option for treating chlamydia; however, healthcare providers recommend this drug to cure chlamydia in pregnant people.

The CDC also recommends amoxicillin can be prescribed to cure chlamydia in pregnant women. So, amoxicillin is not the preferred treatment option for chlamydia. Notwithstanding, if the patient is pregnant with a child, amoxicillin is an effective treatment option against the infection.

Essential tips and precautions before using amoxicillin for Chlamydia

Before deciding to use amoxicillin, it is vital to factor in some precautions to avoid complications of the medication.

  • You should take amoxicillin as precisely as prescribed by your doctor.
  • You can use amoxicillin with or without food.
  • If you don’t like swallowing capsules, amoxicillin is available as an oral suspension and chewable tablets.
  • You can experience trouble breathing, tightness, or bloating of the throat if you use this medication.
  • You can also suffer a skin rash or have prolonged diarrhea when you use this drug. Contact your doctor immediately.
  • Suppose you are using amoxicillin for a sustained period. In this case, your doctor may have to periodically check your liver and kidney functions and conduct blood tests.

You should also consider the following before using amoxicillin:

Allergies: Inform your healthcare provider if you have experienced any allergic reaction to this drug or any other drugs in the past. You should also let your doctor know the other things you are allergic to, like food, dyes, preservatives, or animals. If you’re buying a generic non-prescription product, study the label carefully to know the ingredients.

Children: Newborns and babies aged 3 months old and younger have underdeveloped kidney functions, so they must be administered a lower dose of this medication. Currently, no study indicates amoxicillin is harmful or less effective in children.

Caution should be applied when prescribing amoxicillin to older people

Older people: Elderly people are more likely to suffer age-related kidney issues. This may require some care and tact in prescribing amoxicillin to them. However, there is no demonstrated geriatric-specific problem linked with the usage of this drug.

Using amoxicillin for chlamydia

As earlier noted, even though amoxicillin is an antibiotic, it is not necessarily the preferred treatment option for chlamydia for most people. In fact, the CDC only recommends using amoxicillin for chlamydia in pregnant people. You should only use amoxicillin to medicate chlamydia as prescribed by a doctor.

Some forms of amoxicillin can be used with or without food, so you should study the label/package of the drug to know which one you’re using.

If you’re using the oral suspension form of the drug, make sure you shale the bottle properly before measuring a dose.

Using a dosing syringe instead of a kitchen spoon, you can measure the amoxicillin oral suspension.

Liquid amoxicillin can be mixed with fruit juice, water, baby formula, milk, or ginger ale, but you must drink the mixture immediately. Do not keep it for later.

If you’re using the chewable tablet, do not swallow it as a whole. You must chew the drug before you swallow it.

Do not chew, crush or break the regular tablet. You must swallow it.

Keep to your dosage timing. You must use this drug at the same time each day until you complete your prescription.

Amoxicillin for chlamydia dosage

It is vital to follow the usage instructions as recommended by your healthcare professional. When using amoxicillin, even if your symptoms ease up, you must complete the entire course of the treatment. Stopping the drug early may allow bacteria to continue developing, which may cause reinfection.

For pregnant women using amoxicillin for chlamydia as an alternate to azithromycin, the usual adult dose recommended by the CDC is 500 mg orally 3 times per day for 7 days.

To avoid chlamydial infection and post-delivery complications in the infant, women less than 25 years and people at an increased risk of the infection should be re-screened during the third trimester of pregnancy.

Side effects of amoxicillin

Like every other drug, amoxicillin can trigger some side effects when used. The side effects of the drugs range from mild to severe medical complications. If you experience some of these effects for a prolonged period, you should reach out to your doctor.

Two of the most common side effects include;

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea or vomiting

Amoxicillin can have serious side effects, but they are rare and occur in less than 1 in 1,000 people. Nevertheless, you should call a doctor immediately if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Unusual changes in the color of your skin or bruising
  • Muscle or joint pain 2 or more days after using the drug
  • Circular red patches that come with skin rash
  • The yellowish coloration of the skin or eyes. This can be an indication of liver or gallbladder complications.
  • Dark urine or pale poo
  • Severe diarrhea that is prolonged for more than 4 days or diarrhea that contains blood

Some of these severe side effects can occur up to 2 months after completing your amoxicillin dosage.

Can chlamydia become resistant to amoxicillin?

Chlamydia in pregnant women can still be treated with amoxicillin. However, bacteria in the body can become resistant if you indiscriminately use antibiotics without a prescription from a certified healthcare provider.

There are few documented instances of Chlamydia resistance to antibiotics and no cases of natural and consistent antibiotic resistance in humans.

Amoxicillin drug interactions

Amoxicillin demonstrates some interactions with other drugs when used together. These drugs may reduce the effectiveness of amoxicillin, increase the side effects, or reduce how long it works when taken together. This is why informing your doctor of any drug you take before using amoxicillin is vital.

Amoxicillin may interact with:

  • Blood thinners or anticoagulants like warfarin. This may cause prolonged bleeding time.
  • Oral birth control pills. Amoxicillin may reduce how effective oral contraceptives work.
  • Allopurinol may increase skin rash as a side effect.
  • Probenecid may increase amoxicillin’s blood concentrations.
  • Antibiotics like sulfonamides, tetracycline, macrolides, and chloramphenicol.

This is not an all-inclusive list of interactions for amoxicillin. Instead, this list includes the most common drugs that may interact with amoxicillin.

When to see a doctor

Before using amoxicillin, ensure you have consulted your doctor to get a recommended course of treatment. In addition, while using amoxicillin, you should inform your doctor immediately if you notice any severe side effects. Some side effects include dark urine or pale poo, prolonged diarrhea, skin rash, and unusual skin discoloration.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, amoxicillin can be used to treat other STDs, but the dosage varies on a case-by-case basis. The medication can treat tonsillitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, and infections of the ear, nose, throat, skin, or urinary tract. 

You should try your best to follow the dosage instruction when using amoxicillin. However, if you miss your dose, you should use the drug at the nearest possible time to continue your dosage. 

It typically takes 7 days for amoxicillin to cure chlamydia. However, symptoms of the infection may begin to ease from the second day of usage. Nevertheless, you should ensure you complete the dosage prescribed to you by your doctor to avoid reinfection even if your symptoms improve. In addition, endeavor to avoid sex without a condom during your treatment as you could still pass chlamydia to your sexual partners even if you show no symptoms.

The content on Doctor Alexa’s blog is reviewed by Advanced practice registered nurses or pharmacist and is intended for educational purposes only. This information should not be relied upon as professional medical counsel. Be sure to always consult with your physician about the dangers and benefits of any medication, treatment or procedure.

You shouldn’t wait to see the doctor for simple health needs.