Consumer Medicine Information
What is in this leaflet
This leaflet answers some common questions about Vibramycin and Vibra-Tabs 50.
It does not contain all the available information.
It does not take the place of talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
All medicines have risks and benefits. Your doctor has weighed the risks of you taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 against the benefits they expect it will have for you.
If you have any concerns about taking this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Read this leaflet carefully before starting Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 and keep it with your medicine. You may need to read it again.
What Vibramycin /Vibra-Tabs 50 are used for
Vibramycin and Vibra-Tabs 50 contain an antibiotic used to:
treat certain infections
prevent a form of malaria.
It belongs to a group of medicines called tetracyclines.
These medicines work by killing or stopping the growth of bacteria which cause infections or make acne worse. They also work against parasites that cause malaria.
Tetracyclines will not work against viral infections such as colds or flu.
Your doctor, however, may prescribe Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 for another purpose.
Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 has been prescribed for you.
This medicine is available only with a doctor's prescription.
Before you take Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50
When you must not take it
Do not take Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 if you have an allergy to:
Vibramycin, Vibra-Tabs 50 or medicines containing doxycycline
medicines containing other tetracyclines
any of the ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet.
If you are not sure if you are allergic to any of the above, ask your doctor.
Symptoms of an allergic reaction include:
asthma, wheezing or shortness of breath
swelling of the face, lips or tongue which may lead to difficulty swallowing or breathing
hives, itching or skin rash
Do not take Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 if you are taking preparations containing Vitamin A, isotretinoin or etretinate.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure if you are taking any of these medicines.
Do not take Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 if the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering.
Do not take Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 if the expiry date (EXP) or use by date printed on the pack has passed. If you take this medicine after the expiry date, it may not work.
If you are not sure whether you should start taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50, talk to your doctor.
Before you start to take it
You must tell your doctor if:
1.you are allergic to any other medicines, or other substances such as foods, dyes or preservatives
2.you have or have ever had any other health problems
3.you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
4.you are breastfeeding or plan to breast-feed
5.you are scheduled to have surgery under general anaesthetic
6.you work outdoors or you are exposed to direct sunlight or ultra-violet light.
If you have not told your doctor or pharmacist about any of the above, tell them before you start taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50.
Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 is not recommended during the last half of pregnancy, nor for children eight years and under. Vibramycin and Vibra-Tabs 50, like other tetracyclines, may cause enamel loss and staining in developing teeth or increase the pressure on your child's brain. High doses of tetracyclines may also cause liver problems in pregnant women.
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor if you are taking any other medicines, including medicines you buy without a prescription from a pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.
Some medicines may interfere with Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50. These include:
preparations containing Vitamin A
some medicines used for skin problems such as isotretinoin or etretinate
warfarin, a medicine used to stop blood clotting
methoxyflurane, an inhaled anaesthetic
the contraceptive (birth control) pill. Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 may decrease the effectiveness of some birth control pills. Your doctor may advise you to use an additional method of contraception while you are taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50.
another group of antibiotics called penicillins.
barbiturates such as phenobarbitone
anticonvulsant medicines that are used to treat seizures, such as phenytoin and carbamazepine
acetazolamide, a medicine used to treat glaucoma
These medicines may be affected by Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 or may affect how well it works. You may need different amounts of your medicine or you may need to take different medicines. Your doctor will advise you.
Alcohol and some medicines may interfere with the absorption of Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50. These include:
iron preparations including vitamin preparations that contain iron
antacids used for indigestion.
Do not drink alcohol or take any of these medicines if you are taking Vibramycin or Vibra Tabs 50.
Your doctor or pharmacist has more information on medicines to be careful with or avoid while taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50.
How to take Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50
Follow all directions given to you by your doctor and pharmacist carefully. They may differ from the information contained in this leaflet.
If you do not understand the instructions on the pack, ask your doctor or pharmacist for help.
How much to take
For treating infections, the usual dose of Vibramycin is two 100 mg tablets on the first day followed by one 100 mg tablet each day from then on.
For controlling acne, the usual dose of Vibra-Tabs 50 is one 50 mg tablet each day.
For the prevention of malaria, the usual dose of Vibramycin is one 100 mg tablet each day, commencing two days before entering the malarious area, during the visit, and for two weeks after leaving the area. Vibramycin is normally used in combination with another antimalarial medicine.
Depending on your condition and how you react to the medicine, your doctor may ask you to take a different dose.
How to take it
Swallow the tablets whole with a full glass of water or milk while sitting or standing upright.
Do not lie down immediately after swallowing Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50. It is important to stay upright, for example sitting, standing or walking around for at least half an hour after swallowing your tablet. This is to help avoid irritation to your food pipe.
When to take it
Take Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 during or immediately after a meal, at about the same time each day (usually in the morning). If taken on an empty stomach, it may cause stomach upset.
How long to take it
Keep taking this medicine for the full time of treatment, even if you begin to feel better after a few days. If you do not complete the full course prescribed by your doctor, the infection may not clear completely or your symptoms may return.
For treating infections, Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 is usually taken for one or two weeks.
For controlling acne, Vibra-Tabs 50 is normally taken for a few months.
For preventing malaria, Vibramycin is normally recommended to be taken for up to a maximum of 8 weeks. However, your doctor may prescribe Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 for longer periods.
If you are not sure how long you should be taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50, talk to your doctor.
Continue taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 until you finish the pack or until your doctor recommends.
If you forget to take it
If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take your next dose when you are meant to. Otherwise, take it as soon as you remember, then go back to taking it as you would normally. Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose that you missed.
If you have trouble remembering to take your medicine, ask your pharmacist for some hints.
If you take too much (overdose)
Immediately telephone your doctor or Poisons Information Centre (telephone 13 11 26) for advice, or go to Accident and Emergency (Casualty) at your nearest hospital if you think you or anyone else may have taken too much Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning. You may need urgent medical attention.
While you are taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50
Things you must do
Tell your doctor if you become pregnant while taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50.
If you are taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 for an infection and your symptoms do not improve within a few days, or if they become worse, tell your doctor.
If you get severe diarrhoea, tell your doctor or pharmacist immediately. Do this even if it occurs several weeks after Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 has been stopped. Diarrhoea may mean you have a serious condition affecting your bowel.
Do not take any diarrhoea medicine without first checking with your doctor.
If you are about to start taking any new medicines, tell your doctor or pharmacist that you are taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50.
Tell all doctors, dentists and pharmacists who are treating you that you are taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50.
If you are taking iron preparations (including vitamins that contain iron) or antacids, you must take them at least two hours before or two hours after your Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 to make sure there is no problem with absorption.
Things you must not do
Do not stop taking your tablets because you are feeling better, unless advised by your doctor. If you do not complete the full course prescribed by your doctor, all the bacteria causing your infection may not be killed. These bacteria may continue to grow and multiply so that your infection may not clear completely or may return.
Do not give Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms or condition as you.
Do not use Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 to treat any other medical complaints unless your doctor tells you to.
Things to be careful of
Protect your skin when you are in the sun, especially between 10am and 3pm. Do not use a sunlamp while taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50. Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 may cause your skin to be much more sensitive to sunlight than it is normally. Exposure to sunlight may cause a skin rash, itching, redness, or severe sunburn.
If outdoors, wear protective clothing and use a 30+ sunscreen. If your skin does appear to be burning, tell your doctor before you take your next dose of Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if you have any problems while taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50, even if you do not think the problems are connected with the medicine or are not listed in this leaflet. Like other medicines, Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 can cause some side effects. If they occur, most are likely to be minor and temporary.
However, some may be serious and need medical attention.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist to answer any questions you may have.
While taking it
Tell your doctor if you notice any of the following and they worry you:
oral thrush - white, furry, sore tongue and mouth
vaginal thrush - sore itchy vagina and/or discharge
nail changes from exposure to sunlight
upset stomach or vomiting
difficulty in swallowing
sore mouth or tongue
irritation of the food
These side effects are usually mild.
If any of the following happen, stop taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 and tell your doctor immediately or go to casualty at your nearest hospital:
rash or itching
flaking of the skin
swelling of the face, lips or tongue
more frequent bruising than normal
passing less urine than normal
yellowing of the eyes or skin (jaundice).
These are very serious side effects. You may need urgent medical attention or hospitalisation. However, these side effects are rare. Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. Tell your doctor if you notice any other effects.
After finishing it
Tell your doctor immediately you notice any of the following side effects, particularly if they occur several weeks after stopping Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50:
severe stomach cramps
watery and severe diarrhoea, which may be bloody
fever in combination with one or both of the above.
These are rare but serious side effects. You may need urgent medical attention. Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 can cause some bacteria that are normally harmless and present in the bowel to multiply and cause the above symptoms.
Do not take any medicine for diarrhoea without first checking with your doctor.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you don't understand anything in this list.
Do not be alarmed at this list of possible side effects. You may not experience any of them.
After using Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50
Keep your tablets in the pack until it is time to take them. If you take the tablets out of their pack they may not keep well.
Keep Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 in a cool, dry place where it stays below 30°C. Do not store it, or any other medicine, in a bathroom or near a sink.
Do not leave it in the car or on a window sill. Heat and dampness can destroy some medicines.
Keep it where children cannot reach it. A locked cupboard at least one-and-a half metres above the ground is a good place to store medicines.
If your doctor tells you to stop taking Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50, or the tablets have passed their expiry date, ask your pharmacist what to do with any tablets left over.
What it looks like
Vibramycin or Vibra-Tabs 50 tablets come in two strengths:
Vibra-Tabs 50 (25 tablets) - yellow-green, round tablets marked VBM 50 on one side.
Vibramycin (7 tablets) - yellow-green, round tablets marked VBM 100 on one side.
Vibra-Tabs 50 - 50 mg doxycycline per tablet
Vibramycin - 100 mg doxycycline per tablet.
sodium lauryl sulfate
Vibramycin and Vibra-Tabs 50 do not contain sucrose, tartrazine or any other azo dyes and are gluten-free (less than 0.3% gluten).
Vibramycin and Vibra-Tabs 50 are supplied by:
Pfizer Australia Pty Ltd
ABN 50 008 422 348
38-42 Wharf Road
West Ryde NSW 2114
Toll Free Number: 1800 675 229
Australian Registration Numbers
Vibra-Tabs 50 - AUST R 43020
Vibramycin - AUST R 42952
This leaflet was prepared on 27 March 2006.
© Pfizer Australia Pty Ltd 2001.
All rights reserved