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Erythromycin ointment and its use as a remedy for pimples and acne

Medical expert of the article

, medical expert
Last reviewed: 11.04.2020

Erythromycin ointment is a fairly popular drug that many people know as a known remedy for acne or as a medicine for infectious and inflammatory eye diseases. This ointment is not among the scarce or expensive drugs. A low price makes it affordable even for teenagers.

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ATC classification

D06AX Прочие антибиотики для наружного применения

Active ingredients


Indications of the erythromycin ointment for acne

The main active substance of the ointment is an antibiotic - erythromycin, which is the reason for its use in bacterial lesions. Eye diseases, acne and teen acne are not the only indications for the use of erythromycin, which is one of the most "ancient" and strong antibiotics active against many harmful microorganisms. With the promotion of erythromycin successfully treated and serious diseases such as pneumonia, diphtheria, tonsillitis, some venereal infections and other diseases.

Ointment based on erythromycin, containing in its composition only 1% antibiotic, is used for external diseases. These can be wounds to which pathogenic bacteria have fallen, serious burns, bedsores (tissue death due to prolonged pressure on them), trophic ulcers.

Often erythromycin ointment is called ophthalmic ointment, as it successfully treats both habitual conjunctivitis and trachoma, which is a serious disease that threatens to lose sight. Along with oksolinovoy ointment, ointment based on erythromycin, some are used as a preventive agent during the riot of various viruses and infections, although there is no such indication in the instructions to the drug, and erythromycin itself, being a strong remedy, requires caution in use.

Read also:

Ointments for acne

Creams for acne

Pills for acne

Antibiotics for acne

Masks for the face from acne

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Since an antibiotic is present in the ointment, it is clear that the ointment has an antibacterial effect. Pharmacodynamics ointment is based on the action of its active substance - erythromycin. He, in turn, is able to influence many gram-positive and some gram-negative bacteria. In any case, before starting to use drugs based on erythromycin, it is necessary to conduct certain tests to identify the causative agent and antibiotic activity in their relationship.

Erythromycin is one of the best antibiotics with a pronounced bacteriostatic effect. Those. Under its influence microorganisms lose the ability to grow and multiply. Local application of the drug in the form of an ointment is based on this ability of erythromycin. After all, to achieve a bactericidal effect that causes the rapid death of bacteria, with such a small concentration of antibiotic in the composition of the ointment is very difficult.

The fact that erythromycin ointment does not kill bacteria, but only gradually destroys their cellular structure and intercellular connections, does not mean that it is ineffective. Just to get the desired result, it may take some time. It is this moment that can cause doubts among those who are interested in whether erythromycin ointment helps with acne.

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The pharmacokinetics of erythromycin ointment suggests that this drug penetrates quickly into various tissues of the body and into the blood, but its concentration in the blood plasma remains small. The high penetrating ability of erythromycin causes some features of its use.

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Use of the erythromycin ointment for acne during pregnancy

The use of erythromycin ointment against acne during pregnancy is not entirely safe. The fact is that the placental barrier is not an obstacle to erythromycin, it is able to penetrate the placenta directly to the fetus. And although the ointment contains a very small amount of antibiotic, the expediency and safety of its use should be discussed with a medical specialist.

The same applies to the use of ointments during breastfeeding. Easily penetrating into many tissues and body fluids, erythromycin is able to enter the breast milk and already with it enter the body of the baby. Most often at the time of using erythromycin ointment, doctors advise to refuse breastfeeding, transferring the baby to artificial nutrition.


Splitting of the drug occurs in the liver, and excretion is performed by the kidneys. It is for this reason that contraindications to use can also be severe liver disease, as well as the presence of a diagnosis of jaundice in the history of the disease. And, of course, the usual contraindication to the use of ointment is the individual intolerance of drugs based on antibiotics from the genus of macrolides, which includes erythromycin. Patients with kidney disease should be careful when using ointment with erythromycin.

With all indications and contraindications, it is possible to effectively use erythromycin ointment for acne and youth acne, but it is more expedient to do this after preliminary consultation with a dermatologist.

trusted-source[18], [19], [20], [21], [22], [23]

Side effects of the erythromycin ointment for acne

To infrequent side effects of erythromycin ointment against acne can be attributed minor redness and peeling at the site of application, especially in the first days of use. If these manifestations do not pass within a week, the doctor should revise the appointment.

In extremely rare cases, erythromycin ointment can cause more serious reactions, such as rashes and swelling on the skin or even dizziness. Such symptoms require immediate withdrawal of the drug.

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Dosing and administration

Erythromycin ointment is a remedy intended for external use, which means that it should be applied directly to the skin, naturally, after preliminary preparation of the skin.

The way of using erythromycin ointment from acne is no different from the advice on the use of many external ointments. To begin with, the skin should be cleaned of grease, sweat and dirt. To do this, you can use soap, including antibacterial and household, which are famous for their enviable antimicrobial effect, or special cleansers. Then, the skin should be dipped dry with a clean soft cloth.

Apply erythromycin ointment from acne should not be on the entire surface of the skin, but only on the areas where acne or acne. To do this procedure, doctors recommend 1, and in some cases 2-3 times a day. Ointment is applied to the skin with a thin layer of light movements. It is well tolerated by patients and quickly absorbed.

How long will the therapy last? Only a specialist doctor can determine. The duration of treatment depends on the severity of the infection process. If the initial stage involves treatment lasting 1-3 weeks, then with an average degree of severity, it may be necessary to increase the duration of therapy to 6-8 weeks strictly under the supervision of the doctor, since prolonged use of the drug may cause an increase in the antimicrobial effect leading to a change in the entire bacteriological environment of the body. Those. Not only harmful, but also beneficial bacteria will perish.

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With topical application of erythromycin ointment, an overdose of the drug is not observed, however, the possibility of side effects can not be excluded.

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Interactions with other drugs

With the fact that the erythromycin ointment contains a strong antibiotic, there is also the presence of certain nuances in its application, which relate to the interaction of this drug with other drugs.

In addition to the incompatibility with some antibiotics of the group of lincosamides ("Lincomycin" and "Klindomycin"), erythromycin ointment for acne is an antagonist of the antimicrobial drug "Chloramphenicol", often used in the treatment of eye infections, as well as its analogues, the most famous of which is "Levomycetin". These drugs have exactly the opposite effect, and therefore their joint application will only reduce the effectiveness of treatment.

Antibiotics of beta-lactam (penicillin, cephalosporin and carbapenem series) when combined with erythrocyline in different forms lose their effectiveness as bactericidal preparations.

Erythromycin is able to enhance the toxic effects of certain drugs, creating an increased concentration in blood plasma. Such drugs include "Theophylline", "Aminophylline", "Cyclosporine", as well as caffeine and some medicines, the decay of which occurs in the liver.

Hormonal contraceptives under the influence of erythromycin begin to cope worse with their duties, and this must also be taken into account when using erythromycin ointment that is able to penetrate deeply into tissues and body fluids.

When using erythromycin ointment as a remedy for pimples and acne, it must be remembered that pre-cleaning the skin with face and body scrubs containing abrasive particles and having an exfoliating effect can lead to excessive irritation and drying of the skin.

In any case, before you start using erythromycin ointment as a remedy, you should consult your doctor about the safety of its use, especially if you are shown taking other medications.

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Storage conditions

It does not require special storage conditions, and perfectly retains its properties at room temperature. Since the ointment contains an antibiotic, it is not superfluous to recall that the medicines of such a plan can be unsafe for children, so they need to be stored in places where access to children is limited.

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Shelf life

Ointment based on erythromycin is available in 10-gram tubes and has a shelf life of 3 years.

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Applying erythromycin in the form of ointment should not forget about some precautions associated with the reaction of the skin to the drug. Do not use ointment if there is an allergic reaction to this external product. It is also not necessary to apply the ointment with a very thick layer, this does not increase the effectiveness, but only increases the toxic effect of using the drug on the basis of an antibiotic.

Erythromycin ointment is considered one of the most effective local remedies for acne and acne, but its effectiveness depends on the accuracy of the doctor's instructions regarding this ointment. Adhere to the dosage and frequency of application, which the doctor will determine, based on the individual characteristics of the organism and the extent of the spread of the infectious-inflammatory process, and your skin will again become clean and attractive after a while.

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Pharmacological group

Противоугревые мази

Pharmachologic effect

Противоугревые препараты
Антибактериальные местного действия препараты


To simplify the perception of information, this instruction for use of the drug "Erythromycin ointment and its use as a remedy for pimples and acne" translated and presented in a special form on the basis of the official instructions for medical use of the drug. Before use read the annotation that came directly to medicines.

Description provided for informational purposes and is not a guide to self-healing. The need for this drug, the purpose of the treatment regimen, methods and dose of the drug is determined solely by the attending physician. Self-medication is dangerous for your health.

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