Can You Take Zithromax and Drink Alcohol?

“Can I take Zithromax and alcohol together?”  One of the most common questions I get asked is whether it is OK to drink alcohol while on antibiotics.  I’m not really sure why so many people are really concerned about whether it is OK to drink alcohol while taking most antibiotics but there is a persistent concern among the general public that this is a big problem.  The short answer is that the risks of drinking alcohol while on Zithromax, as with most other antibiotics is pretty minimal.  With Zithromax the primary concern is that like other macrolide antibiotics Zithromax can cause upset stomach, dizziness and vomiting.  These same problems are common effects of alcohol, and so the additive effect of using the combination of Zithromax and alcohol may be increased.  There is little major concern.  The effectiveness of the antibiotic is not diminished, there are no major consequences of the combination in most patients, and overall the combination of Zithromax and alcohol is most often not a big concern.  You should not drink a lot of alcohol, i.e. get really drunk, while taking Zithromax, because it is better to get rest and take good care of yourself in order to give your body the things it needs to get well.  Overall chicken noodle soup is probably a better thing to take with your Zithromax than alcohol, but you’ll probably get well either way.


Zithromax side effects

8 Responses to Can You Take Zithromax and Drink Alcohol?

  1. Azithromycin is a macrolide antibiotic and consumption of ethanol during the dosing window can cause liver damage (hepatotoxicity). This is WELL established in case literature. Zithromax hepatotoxicity is typically associated with a cholestatic hepatitis in some instances of ethanol co-administration so it’s best to wait for 5 days after your last dose.

  2. I don’t think it’s accurate to sum up “all antibiotics” in this question. The question here is can one have alcohol with Azithromycin…NOT “can one have alcohol on any/all antibiotics”. Antibiotics are different from one another. For example I was on Bactrim and I learned that there truly IS a negative interaction with alcohol and all resources online supported that, due to it being a “sulfa drug”. It seems that with Azithromycin alcohol does not cause the same complications as with Bactrim. Bactrim was said to hinder the processing of the alcohol, keeping it in a more toxic form before processing it, thus being less safe for the body than Azithromycin which seems to NOT have the same complications with alcohol. Yes, anyone being honest will admit that it’s better to stay away from altering our natural rhythms in order to get better, but when it gets down to BRASS TAX we need to be forthright and completely honest about exactly what is going on between these drugs. We should have all the information that is out there…without it being filtered. The information doesn’t have to give permission to engage is otherwise ill-advised behavior, but it needs to be accurately offered so that the patient KNOWS what he/she is dealing with. We all need to make decisions for ourselves, and from people with medical knowledge we depend on you to present us with the most accurate information you can. Alcohol is a huge part of our society, not to mention highly addictive and habit-forming. It’s no surprise that a patient would want a cocktail (or beer) or two after a few days sitting on the couch trying to recover using antibiotics. It’s the ONLY thing that the US government ‘allows’ us to use recreationally to ease the human senses. Unfortunately due to the one-sided authorities, there is very little information about Marijuana and medicine interactions, or other “drugs” for that matter. With our technology and smarts we should be able to accurately study all these things instead of saying, “Ohh no, that’s illegal, so we’re going to pretend like it doesn’t exist.” I make decisions for myself as a human being on planet Earth. Just because some authority said that certain substances “aren’t allowed” doesn’t mean that I am not going to choose that those substances are alright for me to use. This is my path. And you have your path. The medical field should open up their studies because millions/billions of people use substances that have little information out due to their illegal status. That is why people run into trouble with medical complications. Because they don’t have the information. Anyhow. My point here is asking all of those in the medical field to be super accurate. For example in this post all antibiotics are summed up as being generally alright to mix with alcohol, yet I found with Bactrim(/sulfa drugs) that it’s actually NOT a good idea to mix alcohol with it. However, with that said, I do thank you Dr. Pullen for being forthright with the info you did offer. We’re not asking for PERMISSION to mix alcohol and antibiotics, we’re asking about the facts of their interactions. We’re going to make our choices either way, ya know? Peace.

  3. I heard that they came up with this story back in one of the conflict wars, I think it was Vietnam … the soldiers or sailors kept getting gonorrhea. They would take the antibiotics, go out on the town, get drunk which would lead them back to the cause of the gonorrhea in the first place. So they started telling them that booze renders the antibiotics useless to try and stop getting them drunk and frisky!

  4. Dr. Pullen,thanks for the advice,alot of antibiotics you can’t even drink a little bit of alcohol or it wont work,who wants to be on this —- all over again cause u did take a drink,i have been on antibiotics from a UTI,then had to be on a different one because they gave me an infection,so take our advice don’t drink,it don’t work for everyone.

  5. Why wouldn’t people be concerned whether it is OK to drink while on antibiotics? If it possibly poses a threat to your health, then most would want to be informed.

  6. Thanks for the info. I knew you were right, but I still like to see it in print before taking the meds along with my hot toddy for my sore throat. Again, thanks for debunking the false info we all grew up with.

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