Erythromycin/Food Interaction Interactions

This information is generalized and not intended as specific medical advice. Consult your healthcare professional before taking or discontinuing any drug, changing your diet or commencing any course of treatment.

Medical warning:

Very important. A change in your diet, medicine, or dosage may be necessary. Promptly consult your doctor or pharmacist.

How the interaction occurs:

The cause of this interaction is not known.

What might happen:

Food may cause a decrease in the level of this medicine in your blood. Several kinds of erythromycin exist. This food effect can vary depending on the specific kind of erythromycin you are taking.

What you should do about this interaction:

Enteric-coated erythromycin may be taken with food if stomach upset occurs. Most non-enteric-coated forms of erythromycin should be taken on an empty stomach (one hour before or two hours after food).Erythromycin estolate may be taken with or without food. Contact your healthcare professional (e.g., doctor or pharmacist) for more information about your specific erythromycin product.Your healthcare professionals may be aware of this interaction and may be monitoring you for it. Do not start, stop, or change your medicine or diet before checking with them first.

  • 1.DiSanto AR, Chodos DJ. Influence of study design in assessing food effects on absorption of erythromycin base and erythromycin stearate. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 1981 Aug;20(2):190-6.
  • 2.Thompson PJ, Burgess KR, Marlin GE. Influence of food on absorption of erythromycin ethyl succinate. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 1980 Nov; 18(5):829-31.
  • 3.Coyne TC, Shum S, Chun AH, Jeansonne L, Shirkey HC. Bioavailability of erythromycin ethylsuccinate in pediatric patients. J Clin Pharmacol 1978 Apr;18(4):194-202.
  • 4.Malmborg AS. Effect of food on absorption of erythromycin. A study of two derivatives, the stearate and the base. J Antimicrob Chemother 1979 Sep; 5(5):591-9.
  • 5.Clayton D, Leslie A. The bioavailability of erythromycin stearate versus enteric-coated erythromycin base when taken immediately before and after food. J Int Med Res 1981;9(6):470-7.
  • 6.Hovi T, Heikinheimo M. Effect of concomitant food intake on absorption kinetics of erythromycin in healthy volunteers. Eur J Clin Pharmacol 1985; 28(2):231-3.
  • 7.Randinitis EJ, Sedman AJ, Welling PG, Kinkel AW. Effect of a high-fat meal on the bioavailability of a polymer-coated erythromycin particle tablet formulation. J Clin Pharmacol 1989 Jan;29(1):79-84.

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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.