Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up
Drugs & Medications

demeclocycline

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Declomycin

GENERIC NAME(S): DEMECLOCYCLINE HCL

Uses

Demeclocycline is used to treat a wide variety of bacterial infections, including those that cause acne. This medication is known as a tetracycline antibiotic. It works by stopping the growth of bacteria.

This antibiotic treats only bacterial infections. It will not work for viral infections (e.g., common cold, flu). Unnecessary use or misuse of any antibiotic can lead to its decreased effectiveness.

OTHER USES: This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.

This drug may also be used for treating a certain hormone imbalance (Syndrome of Inappropriate Antidiuretic Hormone-SIADH) which causes your body to retain water and your urine to be more concentrated than it should be. Demeclocycline works by increasing the amount of water in your urine to more normal levels.

How to use demeclocycline

Take this medication by mouth, usually 2 to 4 times a day or as directed by your doctor. Demeclocycline works best when taken on an empty stomach at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal. Take each dose with a full glass of water (8 ounces or 240 milliliters) unless your doctor directs you otherwise. Do not lie down for 10 minutes after taking this drug. For this reason, do not take it right before bedtime.

If stomach upset occurs, ask your doctor if you can take this medication with food.

Take this medication 2 to 3 hours before or after taking any medications containing magnesium, aluminum, or calcium. Some examples include quinapril, certain forms of didanosine (chewable/dispersible buffered tablets or pediatric oral solution), vitamins/minerals, and antacids. Dairy products (e.g., milk, yogurt), calcium-enriched juice, sucralfate, bismuth subsalicylate, iron, and zinc are also included. These products bind with demeclocycline, preventing its full absorption.

The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. When treating children over 8 years of age, the dosage is also based on weight. For the treatment of infection, children should not take more than 600 milligrams of this medication per day.

This medication works best when the amount of medicine in your body is kept at a constant level. Therefore, take this drug at evenly spaced intervals.

If you are taking this medication to treat an infection, continue to take it until the full prescribed amount is finished, even if symptoms disappear after a few days. Stopping the medication too early may result in a return of the infection.

Inform your doctor if your condition persists or worsens. If you are using this medication to treat SIADH, you should notice an increase in the amount of urine within 5 days.

Side Effects

Diarrhea, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, headache, dizziness, lightheadedness, or rectal discomfort may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: sunburn-like skin reaction (sun sensitivity), darkening of the skin and other areas of the body (e.g., lips, inside of the mouth), difficult/painful swallowing, unusual increase in the amount of urine (except for the expected increase in urination if you are treating SIADH), unusual decrease in the amount of urine or no urine, unusual thirst, weakness, unusual tiredness, brown/gray tooth discoloration.

Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: hearing changes (e.g., ringing in the ears, decreased hearing), easy bruising/bleeding, new signs of infection (e.g., persistent sore throat, fever, chills), stomach/abdominal pain, persistent nausea/vomiting, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine.

Tetracycline drugs such as demeclocycline may rarely cause a serious increase in pressure inside the skull (intracranial hypertension-IH). The risk of this side effect is greater for women of childbearing age who are overweight or who have had IH in the past. If IH develops, it usually goes away after demeclocycline is stopped; however, there is a chance of permanent vision loss or blindness. Get medical help right away if you have: persistent/severe headache, vision changes (such as blurred/double vision, decreased vision, sudden blindness), persistent nausea/vomiting.

This medication may rarely cause a severe intestinal condition (Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea) due to a type of resistant bacteria. This condition may occur during treatment or weeks to months after treatment has stopped. Do not use anti-diarrhea products or narcotic pain medications if you have the following symptoms because these products may make them worse. Tell your doctor immediately if you develop: persistent diarrhea, abdominal or stomach pain/cramping, blood/mucus in your stool.

Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in oral thrush or a new vaginal yeast infection. Contact your doctor if you notice white patches in your mouth, a change in vaginal discharge, or other new symptoms.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, skin sores/blisters, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing, new or worsening swelling/pain in the joints, chest pain, fast/irregular heartbeat.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Precautions

See also Side Effects section.

Before taking demeclocycline, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other tetracycline medication (e.g., doxycycline, minocycline, tetracycline); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney disease, liver disease, problems swallowing, esophagus problems (e.g., esophageal ulcers, hiatal hernia, acid reflux disease-GERD), lupus, a certain hormone imbalance called "water diabetes" (diabetes insipidus).

This drug may make you dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.

This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Avoid prolonged sun exposure, tanning booths, and sunlamps. Use a sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors.

Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are using demeclocycline.

This medication should not be used in children younger than 8 years of age because it may cause permanent tooth discoloration and other problems. Tooth discoloration has also occurred in older children and young adults. Consult your doctor for more information.

This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm an unborn baby. Consult your doctor for more details and to discuss reliable forms of birth control.

This medication passes into breast milk in very small amounts. While there have been no reports of harm to nursing infants, consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Interactions

See also How to Use section.

Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first.

This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious interactions may occur: retinoid medications taken by mouth (such as acitretin, isotretinoin), strontium ranelate.

If you are currently using any of these medications listed above, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting demeclocycline.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: digoxin, kaolin pectin, live bacterial vaccines, penicillins, warfarin.

Although most antibiotics probably do not affect hormonal birth control such as pills, patch, or ring, some antibiotics may decrease their effectiveness. This could cause pregnancy. Examples include rifamycins such as rifampin or rifabutin. Be sure to ask your doctor or pharmacist if you should use additional reliable birth control methods while using this antibiotic.

This product can affect the results of certain lab tests (e.g., some urine tests for sugar), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.

This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.

Notes

Do not share this medication with others.

This medication has been prescribed for your current condition only. Do not use it later for another infection unless told to do so by your doctor. A different medication may be necessary in that case.

With prolonged use or if this medication is used to treat SIADH, laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., complete blood count, kidney and liver function tests, mineral levels) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage

Store at room temperature between 68-77 degrees F (20-25 degrees C) in a tightly closed container away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Taking outdated demeclocycline can result in serious illness. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Information last revised December 2013. Copyright(c) 2013 First Databank, Inc.

Images

DEMECLOCYCLINE 150 MG TABLET
DEMECLOCYCLINE 150 MG TABLET
View Larger Picture
color
red
shape
round
imprint
G, 2111
DEMECLOCYCLINE 300 MG TABLET
DEMECLOCYCLINE 300 MG TABLET
View Larger Picture
color
red
shape
round
imprint
G, 2122
DEMECLOCYCLINE 150 MG TABLET
DEMECLOCYCLINE 150 MG TABLET

Identification

color
red
shape
round
imprint
G, 2111
This medicine is a red, round, film-coated tablet imprinted with "G" and "2111".
DEMECLOCYCLINE 300 MG TABLET
DEMECLOCYCLINE 300 MG TABLET

Identification

color
red
shape
round
imprint
G, 2122
This medicine is a red, round, film-coated tablet imprinted with "G" and "2122".

Add to Cabinet

Add Adderall to my medicine cabinet.

Did you know?

With WebMD's Medicine Cabinet, you can check interactions with drugs.

Go to medicine cabinet

Selected from data included with permission and copyrighted by First Databank, Inc. This copyrighted material has been downloaded from a licensed data provider and is not for distribution, expect as may be authorized by the applicable terms of use.

CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.

URAC: Accredited Health Web Site HONcode Seal AdChoices