Doxycycline is a prescription antibiotic and belongs to the tetracycline group. It was first used in the 1950s. Patients may take doxycycline orally, though it is also available as an injection. Children and adults can take this medication. However, it should be used only for severe conditions in patients younger than eight years old. This is due to the side effects, including permanent yellowing or graying of these children's teeth.
This medication is a significant bacterial infection treatment. Many patients choose to take it as a treatment for bronchitis or pneumonia. Some doctors may even decide to prescribe it as an acne treatment for patients who have not had success with over-the-counter ointments and creams for acne. Of course, when choosing this medication among oral antibiotics for infection, patients need to understand how it works.
How It Works
As a broad-spectrum antibiotic, doxycycline stops the growth of bacteria. It does this by binding to a ribosomal subunit called 30S, which is found only in bacteria. When this medication binds to it, transfer RNA and messenger RNA cannot bind together at that location. This stops the formation of new proteins and prevents the growth of new bacteria. Then, the patient's immune system has time to destroy and remove existing bacteria.
Doxycycline reaches its highest blood concentrations within one to two hours of patients taking it. This medication is absorbed by most of the body's tissues and fluids. It is found in especially high levels in the liver, gallbladder, lungs, and kidneys. This medication's half-life is estimated to be between eighteen to twenty-two hours for healthy patients.
Get the details on the uses and benefits of this medication next.