See also Antibiotics (General)
Tetracycline antibiotics are used to treat certain infections such as chlamydia, as well as for the long-term treatment of acne.
Drugs in this family include
Take at a Different Time of Day
Numerous minerals, including aluminum (found in many antacids), bismuth (in Pepto-Bismol), calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc, interfere with the absorption of medications in the tetracycline family (and vice versa).1–4
The reason is the minerals and the drugs attach to each other and form insoluble chemicals that simply pass out of the digestive tract. The best solution is to avoid taking supplements that contain these minerals within the 2 hours before or after your dose of tetracycline medication.
Possible Harmful Interaction
Tetracycline antibiotics have been reported to cause increased sensitivity to the sun, amplifying the risk of sunburn or skin rash. Because St. John's wort and dong quai may also cause this problem, taking these herbal supplements during tetracycline treatment might add to this risk.
It may be a good idea to wear a sunscreen or protective clothing during sun exposure if you take one of these herbs with a tetracycline antibiotic.
References[ + ]
1. Drug evaluations subscription (section 13, chapter 5). Vol. II. Chicago: American Medical Association, Winter 1993.
2. Tatro D, ed. Drug interaction facts. St. Louis, MO: Facts and Comparisons, 1999: 1060, 1061, 1062, 1068, 1069, 1071.
3. Campbell NR and Hasinoff BB. Iron supplements: a common cause of drug interactions. Br J Clin Pharmacol 31(3): 251–255, 1991.
4. Neuvonen PJ. Interactions with the absorption of tetracyclines. Drugs 11: 45–54, 1976.
5. Tatro D, ed. Drug Interaction Facts. St. Louis, Mo: Facts and Comparisons; 1999.
Last reviewed December 2015 by EBSCO CAM Review Board
EBSCO Information Services is fully accredited by URAC. URAC is an independent, nonprofit health care accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality through accreditation, certification and commendation.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
To send comments or feedback to our Editorial Team regarding the content please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our Health Library Support team will respond to your email request within 2 business days.
Like most people, you’re busy—trying to accomplish a lot in a small amount of time.
But when you have diabetes, you have to keep track
of your blood glucose levels, give yourself medication, eat right, and exercise.
Visit our Diabetes Center to learn more about managing your Diabetes
Cold and Flu Center
Before you attempt to treat your condition, step back, consider your symptoms, and figure out if you have a cold, a flu, or both. ... click here