Amoxicillin and Amoxiclav, the difference between these drugs?

Amoxicillin and Amoxiclav

Medications are antibiotics with a wide spectrum of action. They are used for the treatment of infectious diseases both in pediatrics and in the adult population. They are prescription drugs. Only a doctor who takes into account the diagnosis, severity of the condition, concomitant pathology and sensitivity of the pathogen can prescribe Amoxicillin or Amoxiclav.

Characteristics of drugs

The drugs are semi-synthetic antibiotics of the penicillin series. The active ingredient of both is amoxicillin.


It is available in capsules and tablets with a dosage from 0.125 g to 1 g. For children, the medicine is produced in granules for the preparation of a suspension. The form of release and dosage depends on the manufacturer. Trade names may differ from each other. The main thing is to look at the active substance of the antibiotic offered by the pharmacist.

The drug is active against gram-positive and gram-negative aerobic microbes. Prescribed for infections caused by:

  • staphylococci;
  • streptococci;
  • neisseries, including meningococcal;
  • coli;
  • salmonella;
  • pneumococci;
  • helicobacter pylori, the presence of which in the gastrointestinal tract causes gastritis and ulcers.

In clinical practice , it is prescribed when:

  • infections of the upper and lower respiratory tract (more often pneumonia, bronchitis);
  • prolonged rhinitis, sinusitis, sinusitis, sore throats;
  • diseases of the kidneys, bladder;
  • bacterial lesions of the skin and soft tissues;
  • meningitis.

It is also included in the therapy of stomach ulcers, because it is resistant to acidic environment.

The drug is not prescribed in such cases:

  • during pregnancy and breastfeeding;
  • allergic reaction to the components;
  • liver failure in the decompensation stage;
  • leukemia and mononucleosis;
  • bronchial asthma and pollinosis.
  • Children under 3 years of age are prescribed only a suspension.

Amoxicillin is well tolerated. Rarely possible:

  • allergic reactions;
  • dyspeptic disorders;
  • blood formula changes;
  • headaches, dizziness.

Overdose cases are rare. They are more often observed in children of the first year of life with self-medication. Against the background of the underlying disease, the child has: frequent vomiting, convulsions, lack of reaction to familiar stimuli, drowsiness, lethargy of consciousness. First aid in such a situation is to try to flush the stomach and call an ambulance.

Amoxicillin is well tolerated, allergic reactions are very rare.


In the composition of the drug, in addition to amoxicillin, there is clavulanic acid. The medicine is produced in 3 forms:

  • pills: 250+125, 500+125, 875+125 mg;
  • powder: 500+100, 1000+200 mg – used for intravenous and intramuscular administration in dissolved form;
  • powder for preparation of suspension for oral administration: 125, 200 and 400 mg.

The same types of bacteria are sensitive to Amoxiclav as to Amoxicillin. The main difference is that the drug is effective in the treatment of diseases caused by resistant strains.

The drug is widely used for the treatment of acute and chronic bacterial infections. It is prescribed for the treatment of lung diseases, urology, gynecology. Bone diseases, sepsis, prevention of postoperative infections – indications for the use of medication. Proven effectiveness in pediatrics. In the first 3 months of life , a suspension of 125 mg is prescribed.

Against the background of taking an antibiotic, the following side effects are possible:

  • nausea, diarrhea;
  • rash, skin itching;
  • headache, dizziness.

The drug is not used for allergies to penicillin antibiotics and jaundice caused by the use of amoxicillin in a patient with a history.

With caution, the drug is prescribed for renal insufficiency, especially if the creatinine clearance of the kidneys is less than 30 ml / min.

The antibiotic can be taken during lactation. During pregnancy, it is prescribed for vital indications under the supervision of a doctor.

Cases of Amoxiclav overdose are rare. As in the variant with Amoxicillin, this is self-medication for children under a year old. The clinical picture and first aid for overdose are similar. The main thing is to urgently call an ambulance.

Against the background of taking Amoxiclav , the following side effects are possible:nausea, diarrhea.

Comparison of Amoxicillin and Amoxiclav

The drugs have a similar composition and indications, but they are not the same.

The drugs have the following common features:

  • the active ingredient with antimicrobial activity is amoxicillin;
  • identical spectrum of antibacterial activity;
  • indication for use – infections caused by the same pathogens;
  • it is prescribed for bronchitis, sinusitis, in urology, gynecology and surgery;
  • available in tablets and capsules with a similar dosage;
  • for adults, capsules of 500 mg are recommended 2 times a day, children are prescribed a suspension;
  • some contraindications and side effects.

Amoxicillin or Amoxiclav what’s the difference?

The main difference between the 2 antibiotics is as follows:

  1. Amoxiclav is prescribed for severe infections caused by resistant strains to amoxicillin. The drug is more often used in surgical practice for the prevention of postoperative complications.
  2. Amoxiclav, in addition to tablets, is available in powder form for the preparation of a solution for injection. The drug can be administered intramuscularly and intravenously. Amoxicillin is taken only orally.
  3. When prescribing Amoxiclav, it is necessary to monitor liver samples more carefully. Due to clavulanic acid, the drug is more toxic.

Which is more effective?

Both drugs have a similar spectrum of action. To answer which one is more effective, it is necessary to do a laboratory test for sensitivity to antibiotics. A bacterial culture of the pathogen is grown in a nutrient medium in a Petri dish. Then an antibiotic is added to the colony. If there is a susceptibility to the drug, the growth of the colony slows down or stops completely.

Doctors in childhood often prescribe Amoxicillin. It is easier to tolerate and less toxic. Amoxiclav is more suitable for the prevention and treatment of nosocomial infections.

Which is better – Amoxicillin or Amoxiclav?

What is better to prescribe to the patient, only a doctor can decide, taking into account the diagnosis, the pathogen, the general condition of the patient, concomitant pathologies and individual intolerance.

In pediatrics, most doctors prefer to prescribe Amoxicillin, because it is better tolerated and less toxic to the liver.


For adults

The drug of choice for adults is most often Amoxiclav. Taking into account the formed immunity, mutated strains become the causative agents of infections in persons over 18 years of age. Most of them produce penicillinase and are therefore insensitive to unprotected Amoxicillin.

During pregnancy

Both drugs can be prescribed during pregnancy for vital indications under the strict supervision of the attending doctor. Self-medication during this period is strictly prohibited, because it can harm the health of not only the woman, but also the fetus.

With fungal diseases

For the treatment of fungal diseases, special antifungal drugs are used. Amoxicillin and Amoxiclav can be used in the complex therapy of combined infections when, in addition to bacteria, there is also a pathogenic fungus. It should be remembered that antibiotics do not have independent antifungal activity.

With angina

In case of angina, according to doctors, antibiotics from the macrolide group are more effective. A typical example is erythromycin. Semi-synthetic penicillins, which include Amoxicillin and Amoxiclav, are used as second-line drugs.

With sinusitis

With inflammation of the maxillary sinuses, experts recommend protected amoxicillins. Amoxiclav in this case will be the drug of choice. The remedy for a quick effect is administered intramuscularly for a week.

With bronchitis

In acute or uncomplicated bronchitis, Amoxicillin is more often prescribed in an average therapeutic dosage. The duration of therapy is 7-10 days.

With pneumonia

For the treatment of pneumonia, specialists prefer to prescribe Amoxiclav in high doses. 7 days after the start of therapy, a control X-ray is taken. The duration of the course of antibiotic therapy can reach 14 days.

Is it possible to replace one with another

Complete interchangeability of antibiotics is possible only if the detected bacteria do not synthesize penicillinase. In this case, Amoxiclav can be replaced with Amoxicillin without the risk of worsening the infection. If an enzyme is detected in the assays, replacement is impractical. In a situation where Amoxicillin is ineffective, most doctors replace it with Amoxiclav as a stronger antibiotic. Due to its milder effect on the body, it can be prescribed to children and even pregnant women, but only in the absence of direct contraindications to the use of penicillins.

If for some reason it is not possible to be treated with the prescribed antibiotic, you can replace it with an analog only after consulting a doctor. Do not save money by purchasing more affordable Amoxicillin if the doctor has prescribed Amoxiclav, as the remedy may be ineffective. Remember this and do not expose your health to additional risks.

Amoxicillin and Amoxiclav, the difference between these drugs?

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