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What is azithromycin?

Azithromycin (also called Zithromax®) is used to prevent or treat infections. It is available in 250 mg tablets, 600 mg tablets, and a liquid suspension, all of which are taken by mouth. It is also available in a clear liquid given by vein (IV).

How to take and store azithromycin

  • You may take the azithromycin oral suspension and tablets with or without food. If you have stomach pain, take it with food.
  • Shake the liquid well before you take it. Use an oral syringe or medicine cup to be sure you are taking the correct amount.
  • Store the liquid medicine at room temperature.
  • Discard the liquid medicine after 10 days or on the expiration date printed on the label.

Possible side effects of azithromycin

  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash
  • Headache
  • Stomach pain
  • Indigestion
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Skin more sensitive to sun

These are the most common side effects, but there may be others. Please report all side effects to the doctor or nurse.

In case of a severe side effect or reaction, call the doctor, nurse, or pharmacist at 901-595-3300. If you are outside the Memphis area, dial toll-free 1-866-2STJUDE (1-866-278-5833), and press 0 once the call is connected.

Special instructions for azithromycin

  • Before taking azithromycin, tell your doctor if you have had an allergic reaction to erythromycin. If signs of an allergic reaction occur, tell your doctor right away. Signs of an allergic reaction include rash, itching, trouble swallowing, or swelling of the face, lips, or tongue.
  • While taking azithromycin, if you have severe or watery diarrhea, tell your doctor right away.
  • Finish all doses of this medicine as instructed by your doctor, even if you think your condition is better. Do not stop taking this medicine unless your doctor tells you to do so.
  • Azithromycin may affect the way other medicines work. These medicines include warfarin, theophylline, cyclosporine, phenytoin, carbamazepine, triazolam, and digoxin. Always tell your doctor if you are taking these medicines or if you start taking any new medicine while taking azithromycin.
  • Antacids may decrease how well azithromycin works. Do not take antacids while you are taking azithromycin.
  • While taking azithromycin, use sunscreen and wear extra clothing when exposed to the sun for long periods of time.


This document is not intended to take the place of the care and attention of your personal physician or other professional medical services. Our aim is to promote active participation in your care and treatment by providing information and education. Questions about individual health concerns or specific treatment options should be discussed with your physician.

St. Jude complies with health care-related federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

ATTENTION: If you speak another language, assistance services, free of charge, are available to you. Call 1-866-278-5833 (TTY: 1-901-595-1040).

ATENCIÓN: si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-866-278-5833 (TTY: 1-901-595-1040).

تنبيه: إذا كنت تتحدث باللغة العربية فيمكنك الاستعانة بخدمات المساعدة اللغوية المتوفرة لك مجانا. .يرجى الاتصال بالرقم. 5833-278-866-1  (الهاتف النصي: 1040-595-901-1).