Minocycline belongs to the class of medications called tetracycline antibiotics. It is used to treat infections caused by certain types of bacteria. It is most commonly used to treat certain types of skin infections, urinary tract infections, gallbladder infections, and respiratory tract infections such as bronchitis, pneumonia, and sinusitis.
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed in these drug information articles. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
Riva-Minocycline is no longer being manufactured for sale in Canada. For brands that may still be available, search under minocycline. This article is being kept available for reference purposes only. If you are using this medication, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for information about your treatment options.
Do not take this medication if you are allergic to minocycline, other antibiotics in the tetracycline family (e.g., doxycycline), or any ingredients of the medication.
Although most of the side effects listed below don’t happen very often, they could lead to serious problems if you do not seek medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
Birth control pills: When you use birth control pills at the same time as minocycline, they may be less effective, and you may experience an increased risk of breakthrough bleeding. Your doctor may advise that you use a second form of birth control while taking this medication.
Diarrhea: Minocycline may infrequently cause a condition called pseudomembranous colitis (serious diarrhea caused by antibiotics). If you develop severe diarrhea after starting this medication, even several weeks after treatment, contact your doctor as soon as possible.
Discoloration of teeth: The use of minocycline during tooth development (from the last trimester of pregnancy to the age of 13 years) may cause permanent discoloration of the teeth (yellow-grey-brown). Though more commonly associated with long-term use of tetracyclines, this effect has also been known to occur after taking the medication for a short time. For this reason, minocycline should not be used by children 13 years old or younger unless other medications are unlikely to be effective or can’t be used.
Drowsiness/reduced alertness: People who take minocycline may experience headaches, lightheadedness, dizziness, or loss of balance. Decreased hearing has been reported rarely by those who take this medication. These symptoms may disappear during therapy and usually disappear rapidly when the medication is stopped. Avoid activities requiring alertness, such as driving vehicles or using hazardous machinery if the medication affects you in this way.
Medical conditions: If you have liver disease or lupus, discuss with your doctor how this medication may affect your medical condition, how your medical condition may affect the dosing and effectiveness of this medication, and whether any special monitoring is needed.
Overgrowth of organisms: The use of antibiotics may occasionally result in an overgrowth of organisms not killed by medication. This can cause conditions such as yeast infections to occur for some women. Women may be able to prevent yeast infections by eating yogurt daily while taking minocycline.
Sun sensitivity: An exaggerated sunburn reaction may occur for some people taking minocycline. If skin redness appears, stop taking the medication and check with your doctor.
Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.
Breast-feeding: This medication passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking minocycline, it may affect your baby. Do not breast-feed while taking this medication.
Children: Minocycline is not recommended for use by children younger than 13 years of age.
There may be an interaction between minocycline and any of the following:
If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:
Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.