Compare Azithromycin vs. Doxycycline

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Zithromax
(Azithromycin)

Vibramycin
(Doxycycline)

Kills bacteria. Zithromax (Azithromycin) is good for treating many bacterial infections. It is also available as generic. Talk to your doctor if you've ever had liver disease, myasthenia gravis, or on medications to thin the blood, as the doctor may write an alternative.Treats bacterial infections. Vibramycin (Doxycycline) is good for treating many bacterial infections. It is also available as generic. However, it can make birth control pills less effective. You also have to protect yourself against sunburn.
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Reviews & ratings
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5.45Azithromycin
Reviews for Zithromax (Azithromycin)
74%
of people (All ages) say Zithromax (Azithromycin) is worth it
59%
say it works well
11%
say it's a big hassle
909 reviews
Have you used Zithromax (Azithromycin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Vibramycin (Doxycycline)
49%
-25% worse vs. Zithromax (Azithromycin)
36%
-23% worse vs. Zithromax (Azithromycin)
24%
-13% worse vs. Zithromax (Azithromycin)
112 reviews
Have you used Vibramycin (Doxycycline)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
AzithromycinDoxycycline
  • Diarrhea 5%
  • Nausea 3%
  • Abdominal pain 3%
  • Vomiting 6%
  • Rash 2%
  • Vaginitis 2%
More Azithromycin side effects »
  • Any adverse event 40%
  • Nausea 13%
  • Vomiting 8%
  • Diarrhea 3%
  • Bacterial vaginitis 3%
  • Headache 2%
  • Upper abdominal pain 2%
  • Vaginal yeast infection 2%
More Doxycycline side effects »
How it works
AzithromycinDoxycycline
Zithromax (Azithromycin) is an antibiotic. It kills bacteria by preventing them from reproducing and repairing themselves.Vibramycin (Doxycycline) is a tetracycline antibiotic. It stops bacteria by preventing them from reproducing and repairing themselves.
Type of medication
AzithromycinDoxycycline
Prescription only
Prescription only
Available as
AzithromycinDoxycycline
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Eye drops
  • Pill
  • Delayed release capsule
  • Liquid
Used for
AzithromycinDoxycycline
Risk factors for serious side effects
AzithromycinDoxycycline
      • History of liver disease
      • History of myasthenia gravis
      Detailed Zithromax (Azithromycin) risks & warnings »
      • Age 8 years or younger
      • Using oral birth control pills
      • Long antibiotic treatment period
          • Women of childbearing age
          • Women of childbearing age
          • Overweight or obese
          • Taking isotretinoin (Accutane)
          Detailed Vibramycin (Doxycycline) risks & warnings »
          Pregnancy

          Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

          Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

          Food
          AzithromycinDoxycycline
          • Can be taken with or without food.
          • Can take with or without food.
          No food related info.
          Kidneys and liver
          AzithromycinDoxycycline
          • There have been reports of liver damage that can require hospitalization or can cause death. These have been rare. Talk to your doctor if you notice pain in your abdomen, loss of appetite, yellowing of your skin or eyes, or dark colored urine.
          No kidneys and liver related info.
          Pain
          AzithromycinDoxycycline
          • Can cause abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea.
          No pain related info.
          Upsides and benefits
          AzithromycinDoxycycline
          • Available in generic.
          • Available in different forms: tablet, capsule, and suspension.
          • Used to treat many types of bacterial infections.
          • Less resistance seen in bacteria to this antibiotic. Your doctor may run tests to see which antibiotics will kill the bacteria causing your infection.
          • Can be taken with or without food.
          • Available in generic.
          • Available in different forms: tablet, capsule, and suspension.
          • Used to treat many types of bacterial infections.
          • Less resistance seen in bacteria to this antibiotic. Your doctor may run tests to see which antibiotics will kill the bacteria causing your infection.
          Downsides and risks
          AzithromycinDoxycycline
          • Must space out antacids by at least 2 hours.
          • Has to be used with caution in people who've had liver disease.
          • Can't be used in people who've had myasthenia gravis.
          • Must be used with caution in people who are on medications to thin the blood (anticoagulants) because of increased risk of bleeding.
          • Can cause abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea.
          • Can't be used in pregnant women and children under 8 years old.
          • Makes your skin more sensitive to the sun.
          • Has to be taken with plenty of water and food and you have to stay upright for 30 minutes afterwards to avoid stomach irritation.
          • Can make birth control less effective.
          • Can cause diarrhea.
          Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
          AzithromycinDoxycycline
          • Take the medication exactly how your doctor tells you to.
          • Can cause diarrhea, nausea or vomiting.
          • Space out any antacids with magnesium or aluminum by at least 2 hours.
          • Can take with or without food.
          • Take the medication exactly how your doctor tells you to.
          • If you're using birth control pills, this medication can make them less effective.
          • Wear sunblock if you have to go out into the sun since your skin can become more sensitive to sunburn.
          • Can cause diarrhea, nausea or vomiting.
          • Space out any vitamins by at least two hours.
          • Take with plenty of food and liquids.
          • Don't take any medications with bismuth (Pepto-Bismol, Kaopectate) while taking this medication.
          • Don't lie down for at least 30 minutes after taking this medication.
          Learn more
          More about AzithromycinSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
          Have you used Zithromax (Azithromycin)?
          Worth itNot sureNot worth it
          More about DoxycyclineSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
          Have you used Vibramycin (Doxycycline)?
          Worth itNot sureNot worth it