What to Know About Moxatag (Amoxicillin)

A Common Antibiotic for Treating Bacterial Infections

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Moxatag (amoxicillin) is in the penicillin class of antibiotics—medications that treat bacterial infections by killing the bacteria that cause them or by preventing them from growing. Moxatag is prescribed for a wide range of common infections, including strep and ear infections, and comes in many formulations:

  • Tablets, chewable, and extended-release
  • Capsules
  • Powder for suspension

Other Brands Names for Amoxicillin

Besides Moxatag, amoxicillin is sold in the United States as:

  • Amoxicot
  • Amoxil
  • DisperMox
  • Moxilin
  • Trimox

Uses

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Moxatag to treat:

  • H. pylori infections
  • Pneumonia
  • Sinus infection
  • Skin infections
  • Group A strep infections
  • Urinary tract infections

Off-Label Uses

Off-label uses for Moxatag include:

  • Anthrax
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Periodontitis
  • Endocarditis
  • Lyme disease
  • Erysipeloid (a bacterial infection of the skin among people who handle fish and meat)
  • Prosthetic joint infection

Before Taking

Before taking this or any other medications, it is important to make sure the prescribing doctor knows about your medical history, current health problems, allergies, and other medications you are taking.

It is especially important to let them know if you've ever had a bad reaction to a penicillin antibiotic in the past. Your doctor may test your for penicillin allergies before you start the medication.

[Standard disclaimer: Talk to your doctor about all medications, supplements, and vitamins that you currently take. While some drugs pose minor interaction risks, others may outright contraindicate use or prompt careful consideration as to whether the pros of treatment outweigh the cons in your
case.]

Precautions and Contraindications

Before you take amoxycillin, go over the precautions and contraindications associated with the drug with your doctor. This is to ensure you don't have any conditions that might negatively affect the effectiveness or safety of amoxycillin for you.

An important contraindication for amoxycillin (and for any antibiotic in the penicillin class) is a history of having had an allergic reaction to it or to another penicillin-related drug. The same is true of allergic reactions to cephalosporin antibiotics.

Health issues that may preclude taking amoxycillin include:

  • Mononucleosis
  • Kidney disease
  • Phenylketonuria

Seniors, children, and people who have kidney disease may require special dosing—typically starting with a relatively small dose that may be adjusted for effectiveness as needed.

Other Penicillin Antibiotics

Amoxicillin belongs to the penicillin class of antibiotics, along with:

  • Penicillin
  • Ampicillin
  • Nafcillin
  • Oxacillin
  • Dicloxacillin
  • Cloxacillin
  • Piperacillin
  • Piperacillin/tazobactam

Dosage

Oral formulations of amoxycillin come as:

  • Capsules of 250 milligrams (mg) and 500 mg
  • Oral solutions of 125, 200, and 400 mg per 5 milliliters (mL)
  • Tablets of 500 mg and 875 mg
  • Chewable tablets of 125 mg and 250 mg
  • Extended-release tablets of 775 mg

Amoxycillin dosage varies, but is typically dosed based on a person's age, weight, and reason for taking the drug.

Modifications

Seniors may need a smaller dose; adjustments also may be necessary for people who have kidney disease.

[Standard disclaimer: All listed dosages are according to the drug manufacturer. Check your prescription and talk to your doctor to make sure you are taking the right
dose for you.] 

How to Take and Store

Amoxycillin is a relatively straightforward medication, although there are few things to keep in mind while you're on it.

  • If possible, take amoxycillin with food or a beverage, as it may cause an upset stomach.
  • You can store the suspension form of this medication in the refrigerator (but don't freeze it).
  • If you're taking a liquid or suspension or giving it to a child, shake the bottle before measuring out the dose.
  • If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you notice—unless it's nearly time for your next scheduled dose. In that case, skip the missed dose: do not double up on doses.
  • Store amoxycillin (and all medications) in its original container, out of sight and reach of children, and away from moisture, heat, or direct light.

Side Effects

While taking amoxycillin, you may experience side effects. Most of the common ones are relatively mild, but if you're concerned about any you may be experiencing, contact your doctor's office.

Common

  • An upset stomach
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Clay-colored stools
  • Oral thrush
  • A yeast infection
  • Bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth

Severe

Serious side effects warrant immediate medical attention. Call your doctor right away if while taking amoxycillin you experience:

  • A rash
  • Trouble swallowing
  • The feeling that your throat is closing
  • Hives
  • Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes (jaundice)
  • Dizziness
  • Racing heartbeat
  • Confusion
  • Convulsions

Warnings and Interactions

Interactions with other medications or supplements can lead to serious health problems. Always tell your doctor what medications you take if they are prescribing amoxycillin.

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  1. Mayo Clinic. Amoxicillin. Sept. 1, 2020.

  2. UpToDate. Amoxicillin: Drug information. 2020.