Essentially the consumption of alcohol can affect any kind of medications. Especially when we are talking about oral or drugs treatment. In this article, we will discuss about alcohol and drug interaction related to doxycycline. We will analyze whether the consumption of alcohol along with doxycycline has any correlation or not. To make it clear, alcohol in this term is drinking alcoholic beverages in daily basis. So it’s also closely related with the drinking habit. The effectiveness of doxycycline will have bigger impact if someone is a heavy drinker, or drinking above the limit. Before we start talking about alcohol and drug interaction related to doxycycline, let’s dig more about doxycycline itself.

What is Doxycycline?

As one of broad-spectrum antibiotic, doxycycline is usually given to patients with respiratory tract infections. This antibiotic is classified in tetracycline class. Besides tract infections, doxycycline is also used to cure lyme disease, gonorrhea, eye infections, gum disease or periodontitis, and malaria. Based on the review from Drug Information Group of University of Illinois-Chicago, doxycycline comes in 3 oral forms:

  • Doxycycline oral tablet to treat severe acne and infections. The oral tablet also used to prevent malaria.
  • Doxycycline capsule has the same goal like other forms of doxycycline. But most importantly, a person must not change between different forms during one treatment. Also remember to check the blood pressure before consuming this capsule. During treatment for rosacea, sometimes the brain will experience raised pressure.
  • Doxycycline syrup used to treat bacterial infections by stopping the growth of bacteria. Typically this kind of medications is drunk on an empty stomach, 2 hours after a meal.

Any forms of doxycycline that a patient takes; it must be used according to the prescription. Take doxycycline along with plenty of water. Later we will elaborate about alcohol and drug interaction related to doxycycline.

Side Effects of Doxycycline

Like any other antibiotics, doxycycline also has contraindications and side effects. Some side effects of particular antibiotics may get worse by drinking alcohol. And these are the side effects of doxycycline:

  • Headaches
  • Vomiting
  • Change of teeth color
  • Skin rash, peeling, or blistering of the skin
  • Darkening urine color
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Blurry sight
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Sunburn
  • Liver damage
  • Muscle pain

And still many other side effects of doxycycline according to the patient. Basically these side effects don’t need medical attention, because the body will adjust to the medicine. The consumption of doxycycline must be under supervision of medical professional personnel. This antibiotic may cause permanent graying or yellowing teeth color. Yes, the consumption of doxycycline can cause permanent graying or yellowing in teeth due to its ingredients. Children under 8 years old, pregnant women, breastfeeding mother, and a person who is allergic to tetracycline antibiotics must not take this kind of prescription.

Does Alcohol Affect Doxycycline

Mixing any alcohol with any antibiotics may decrease the effectiveness of the treatment. How come? Basically antibiotics and alcohol require the same enzyme to process once they enter the body. If the enzyme within the liver has to work hard at the same time, it may lead to suboptimal treatment of bacterial infection that meant to be cured. In the scope of alcohol and drug interaction, basically there are 3 classifications:

Major

Generally if the interaction classified as major, it means that the effect will be highly significant.

Moderate

The interaction in this category is moderately significant. Only combine it under special cases.

Minor

This classification happens during minimal significant impact. Combining alcohol and drug interaction is fine, but should be under monitoring plan.

In terms of alcohol and drug interaction related to doxycycline, alcohol is not prohibited. But it is also not recommended. Based on studies from International Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, heavy drinkers tend to eliminate doxycycline from their systems quicker than healthy patients. Basically, alcohol may lower the effectiveness of the treatment. For drinkers, the doxycycline won’t maintain the therapeutic level within the bloodstream. It means that the concentration of doxycycline won’t be as high as it should be. Eventually, the amount of doxycycline to cure the infection won’t be effective.

Unlike metronidazole or tinidazole, antibiotics that are strongly prohibited to be mixed with alcohol, doxycycline is categorized as antibiotic that may interact with alcohol. But for people with chronic alcohol consumption habit, the effectiveness may be decreasing. Also take a note that people with liver problems must not combine alcohol and doxycycline. The effect of alcohol and drug interaction related to doxycycline is different from one person to another. So anyone should be aware of his or her body condition while consuming this kind of prescription. It is not only the recent way of life, but also the history of chronic drinker, if any. No one wants to be sick. Moreover, no one wants to have less effective treatment during antibiotic consumption due to the reaction with alcohol. Please also note that doxycycline must not be consumed together with:

  • Seizure drugs like phenytoin, carbamazepine, and barbiturates
  • Antacids containing aluminum, magnesium, iron, subsalicylate, and bismuth
  • Warfarin, the dosage must not be in the same level when consumed together with doxycycline

Combining doxycycline along with particular medications may raise the side effects.

Precaution is Important

Even if doxycycline classified as one of the antibiotics that can go along with alcohol, it is recommended to avoid heavy drinking. The chronic intake of alcohol will lower the effectiveness of doxycycline. When someone is sick and the doctor prescribed doxycycline, it means that he needs to take a rest, drink water, and follow the medication rules. It will be great if someone can wait until the medication cycle stops to start drinking all over again.

Keep in mind that if everything become worse, seek for help from medical staff or doctor. Communicate your health and drinking habit history to the doctor as the reference before he or she prescribe doxycycline to you. Take the medicine wisely and finish the treatment accordingly to have maximum result, with no unwanted side effects.