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Generic name: azithromycin ophthalmic [a-ZITH-roe-MYE-sin-off-THAL-mik]
Ophthalmic antiseptics
Drug class: Ophthalmic anti-infectives

What is AzaSite?

AzaSite contains azithromycin, a macrolide antibacterial antibiotic.AzaSite treats eye infections that are caused by bacteria.AzaSite can be used in other ways than those listed here.


AzaSite should be used for the entire prescribed time. You may experience some improvement in your symptoms before the infection has completely disappeared.AzaSite should be stopped immediately if any of the following symptoms are present: fever, sore tongue or face, eye burning, a rash with blisters and peeling, and a red or purple rash.Use this medicine only if you are not wearing contact lenses. AzaSite contains a preservative that can cause soft contact lenses to discolor. After using AzaSite, wait at least 15 minutes before inserting your soft contact lenses.If you have an active eye infection, you should avoid wearing contact lenses.AzaSite can cause serious side effects, including eye crusting or drainage, irritation of the eye, watery or red eyes, heightened light sensitivity, and signs of infection.

Before you take this drug

AzaSite should not be used if you have an allergy to Zithromax (azithromycin).Inform your doctor of any pregnancy or plans to get pregnant while undergoing treatment.There is no way to know if azithromycin ophthalmic can pass into breast milk or harm nursing babies. If you're breastfeeding, do not take this medicine without first consulting your doctor.AzaSite is not recommended for children younger than one year.

Similar/related drugs

Ciprofloxacin for ophthalmic use, The ophthalmic form of azithromycin, levofloxacin for ophthalmic use, Erythromycin for ophthalmic, Gentamicin Ophthalmic

How to take AzaSite?

AzaSite drops should be applied once daily, for five days. Dosage instructions should be followed very closely.Read all the instructions or guides that come with your medication and follow all the directions. Follow the directions on your prescription label.AzaSite should not be used with soft lenses. This medicine contains a preservative that could stain lenses permanently. You should wait at least 15 minutes before putting in your lenses.Before using any eye medications, wash your hands.Shake the bottle once before using it.Applying the AzaSite drops is as simple as tilting your head slightly back and pulling down your lower lid to form a pocket. Squeeze a few drops into the pocket created by holding the dropper over the eye. For 1 to 2 minutes, close your eyes.

Only use the prescribed number of drops.

  • Only use the drops prescribed by your physician. Wait 5 minutes in between each drop if you are using more than 1 drop.
  • You should wait at least 10 minutes before you use any eye drops prescribed by your doctor.

Avoid touching the tip or placing it on the eye. If the dropper is contaminated, it can cause serious eye problems.AzaSite drops should not be used if they have changed color or contain particles. For new medication, call your pharmacist.Even if you feel better quickly, continue to take this medication for the entire prescribed time. You can get resistant to infections if you skip doses.AzaSite eye drops can be stored in the fridge if they are not opened. Avoid freezing.Store the opened bottle at room temperature for up to 14 days. When not in use, keep the bottle closed tightly.

Details on dosage

Adult dose for bacterial conjunctivitis:Instill one drop twice daily, eight to twelve hours apart.
Instill one drop into the eye or eyes affected once per day.The usual pediatric dose for bacterial conjunctivitis in children is:One year old or older
Instill one drop twice daily, eight to twelve hours apart, in the eye or eyes affected.
Instill one drop into the eye or eyes affected once per day.
Use: To treat bacterial conjunctivitis caused by susceptible isolates from CDC coryneform G, H influenzae, H, S. aureus, S. mitis, and S. pneumoniae.

What happens if I miss the dose?

If you are almost due for the next dose, skip the dose that was missed. Never take two doses of the same medicine at once.

What happens if I overdose?

Call 1-800-222-1222 for poison help or seek immediate medical attention.

Avoid this

If you have symptoms such as redness, swelling, inflammation, or drainage in your eye, you should avoid wearing contact lenses.

Side effects of AzaSite

If you experience any of the following symptoms: an allergic reaction to AzaSite (itching; difficulty breathing; swelling in your throat or face) or severe skin reactions (fever or sore throat with burning eyes or skin, blistering or peeling skin, or red or purple rash),

If you experience:

  • Drainage or crusting in your eyes
  • If you experience severe irritation, burning, stinging, or itching after using eye drops, discontinue use immediately.
  • Feeling something in your eyes
  • Changes to the surface of your eye
  • Eye pain or swelling
  • Eyelid irritation
  • Any signs of an infection.

Azasite may cause side effects such as:

  • Eye irritation;
  • Dry or itchy eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Stuffy nose;
  • Changes in your taste buds

There may be other side effects. For medical advice on side effects, call your doctor. Report side effects to the FDA by calling their hotline at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Interaction with other drug

Other drugs that you take are unlikely to affect the medicine used on your eyes. Many drugs interact. Inform your health care providers of all the medicines that you take, including over-the-counter medicines and herbal supplements.