Do not use tetracycline if you are pregnant. It could cause harm to the unborn baby, including permanent discoloration of the teeth later in life. Tetracycline can make birth control pills less effective. Use a second method of birth control while you are taking this medicine to keep from getting pregnant. Tetracycline passes into breast milk and may affect bone and tooth development in a nursing baby. Do not take this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not give this medicine to a child younger than 8 years old. Tetracycline can cause permanent yellowing or graying of the teeth, and it can affect a child's growth.
Avoid exposure to sunlight or artificial UV rays (sunlamps or tanning beds). Tetracycline can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight and sunburn may result. Use a sunscreen (minimum SPF 15) and wear protective clothing if you must be out in the sun.
Do not take iron supplements, multivitamins, calcium supplements, antacids, or laxatives within 2 hours before or after taking tetracycline. These products can make this medicine less effective.
Throw away any unused tetracycline when it expires or when it is no longer needed. Do not take this medicine after the expiration date on the label has passed. Expired tetracycline can cause a dangerous syndrome resulting in damage to the kidneys.
Before taking this medicine
Do not use this medication if you are allergic to tetracycline, or to similar medicines such as demeclocycline (Declomycin), doxycycline (Adoxa, Doryx, Oracea, Vibramycin), or minocycline (Dynacin, Minocin, Solodyn, Vectrin). Before taking tetracycline, tell your doctor if you have liver or kidney disease. You may not be able to take this medicine, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during therapy.
If you are using tetracycline to treat gonorrhea, your doctor may test you to make sure you do not also have syphilis, another sexually transmitted disease.
FDA pregnancy category D. Tetracycline can cause harm to an unborn baby, including permanent discoloration of the teeth later in life. Do not use tetracycline without your doctor's consent if you are pregnant. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment. Tetracycline can make birth control pills less effective. Use a non-hormonal method of birth control (such as a condom, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy while you are taking this medicine. Tetracycline passes into breast milk and may affect bone and tooth development in a nursing infant. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Children younger than 8 years old should not take this medicine. This medicine can cause permanent tooth discoloration and can also affect a child's growth.
More frequently reported side effects include: vulvovaginal candidiasis, sore throat, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, stomatitis, epigastric distress, and skin photosensitivity. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.
For the Consumer
Applies to tetracycline: capsule, capsule delayed release, capsule extended release, powder for suspension, suspension, syrup, tablet, tablet delayed release, tablet extended release