Amoxicillin, part of the penicillin group of drugs, is widely-prescribed to treat a number of different bacterial infections. As an antibiotic, it stops bacteria from forming cell walls and growing, ultimately eradicating the infection. It is only used for conditions that have been proven or are highly likely to be caused by a bacterial infection; it is not effective against viral infections, and unnecessarily taking antibiotics can actually increase your body’s resistance to antibiotic drugs.
So what specific bacterial infections can be treated with a course of amoxicillin? Some of the most common uses for this drug include:
· Strep throat. If you have a sore throat and fever, your doctor will likely want to run a rapid strep test. If it turns out you do have strep throat and/or tonsillitis (conditions caused by the streptococcal bacteria), you can start a course of antibiotics right away. Amoxicillin is a top choice.
· Pneumonia. Bacteria is a common cause of pneumonia; however, there are several other potential causes, including viruses, fungi, and bacteria-like organisms. If your doctor has diagnosed you with bacterial pneumonia, amoxicillin may be prescribed.
· Middle ear infections. If you have any kind of ear infection, your doctor may prescribe amoxicillin as a precaution. Leaving an ear infection untreated can cause serious health problems, such as partial hearing loss or an infection of the mastoid bone.
· Skin infections. Bacterial skin infections that amoxicillin may be prescribed to treat include cellulitis (infection of deep skin), erysipelas (red, painful infection of superficial skin), folliculitis (inflammation of hair follicles), and impetigo (infection characterized by pustules with yellow fluid).
·Lyme disease. Amoxicillin may be used to treat an early infection of Lyme disease, an inflammatory disease caused by bacteria and transmitted through tick bites.
Other Possible Uses for Amoxicillin
While antibiotics are not usually prescribed to treat acute bronchitis, amoxicillin may sometimes be prescribed when there is a risk of complications from acute bronchitis (e.g. you are likely to develop pneumonia due to existing medical conditions).
Amoxicillin is also sometimes used in combination with the antibiotic clarithromycin to treat stomach ulcers caused by a certain kind of bacteria (H. pylori). Your doctor may prescribe Prevpac, a combination medication containing clarithromycin, lansoprazole, and amoxicillin.
There are several potential off-label uses for amoxicillin, including the treatment of heart valve problems, treatment of anthrax exposure, protection against chlamydia during pregnancy, and protection against bacterial infections in newborns.
If you need amoxicillin for any reason, it is important to discuss the benefits and risks with your doctor and to determine that you can safely take this medication. For more information about Amoxicillin including side effects, dosage and more, visit our Amoxicillin Drug Page. At this page, you’ll also find free discount coupons to save on Amoxicillin.