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Medically Approved

Clarithromycin oral tablet dosage: A detailed guide

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Form and strengthsDosageFAQHow it’s takenCouponOverdoseAsk your doctor
Doctors prescribe clarithromycin oral tablet for certain infections caused by bacteria. You take it by mouth two or three times per day, depending on your infection.
Medically reviewed by Patricia Weiser, PharmD
Updated on

Specifically, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved clarithromycin oral tablet to treat the following infections in adults and certain children:

Clarithromycin is also approved to treat the following infections in adults:

Clarithromycin is also FDA-approved to treat ear infections in certain children.

This article describes clarithromycin oral tablet’s dosages and strengths and gives details on how to take it. You’ll also find information on cost savings and coupon options for clarithromycin. If you want to know more about clarithromycin oral tablet, see this overview article. It covers details about the drug’s uses and side effects, ways to save on cost, and more.

Clarithromycin oral tablet is a generic medication. It isn’t available in a brand-name version. Clarithromycin also comes in an oral suspension and an extended-release oral tablet that you swallow, but these forms aren’t described in this article. To learn more about these forms, talk with your doctor.

Form and strengths of clarithromycin

Clarithromycin oral tablet comes as follows:

  • Form: oral tablet, which you’ll take by swallowing
  • Strengths: 250 milligrams (mg) and 500 mg

Dosage of clarithromycin

This article describes the recommended dosages for clarithromycin oral tablet. The drugmaker provides these dosages.

If your doctor prescribes this medication, you should follow the dosage they prescribe. Your doctor will determine the dosage that best meets your needs. Do not change your dosage of clarithromycin oral tablet without your doctor’s recommendation.

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Usual recommended dosages of clarithromycin in adults

Your clarithromycin dosage will depend on the type of infection you have.

Dosage for tonsillitis and other conditions

ConditionDosageFrequency and duration
H. pylori infections500 mgEvery 8–12 hours for 10–14 days
Mycobacterial infections500 mgEvery 12 hours*
Tonsillitis and other infections250 mg or 500 mgEvery 12 hours for 7–14 days

* For this use, treatment duration varies. Your doctor will advise you how long to take clarithromycin oral tablet for mycobacterial infections.

Dosage of clarithromycin in children

Your child’s clarithromycin dosage will depend on their weight and the type of infection they have. Body weight in the table below is expressed in kilograms (kg).

ConditionRecommended doseFrequency
Mycobacterial infection7.5 mg/kg (up to 500 mg)Every 12 hours*
Other infections15 mg/kg/day (in divided doses)Every 12 hours for 10 days

One kilogram is about 2.2 pounds (lb). For example, a child who weighs 34 kg (about 75 lb) would likely be prescribed 500 mg of clarithromycin per day for an ear infection. This would be given as one 250-mg tablet every 12 hours.

* For this use, treatment duration varies. Your doctor will advise you how long to take clarithromycin oral tablet for mycobacterial infections.

Dosage adjustments for clarithromycin

Your doctor will prescribe a dosage of clarithromycin oral tablet based on several factors. These include:

  • the specific infection being treated and how severe it is
  • your age
  • your weight (if you are a child)
  • how well your kidneys work
  • other health conditions you may have

Missed dose of clarithromycin

Take a missed dose of clarithromycin as soon as you remember. If it’s close to when you usually take your next dose, skip the missed dose. Do not take two doses at the same time to make up for the missed dose. But make sure to take all of the doses your doctor prescribes, even if you feel better. Not finishing a course of antibiotics could make your infection come back or become more difficult to treat. Call your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure if you should take a missed dose.

For tips on how to plan your doses of clarithromycin oral tablet and avoid missing a dose, read this article. You could also try:

  • downloading a reminder app on your phone
  • setting an alarm
  • putting a note where you’ll see it, such as on your calendar, bathroom mirror, or bedside table

Frequently asked questions

Below are answers to commonly asked questions about clarithromycin oral tablet and its dosage.

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Do I need to take my dose of clarithromycin with or without food?

You can take clarithromycin with or without food.

Is clarithromycin taken long term?

No, doctors don’t typically prescribe clarithromycin oral tablet as a long-term treatment. Instead, it’s usually recommended for short-term use.

If you have questions about how long you should take clarithromycin oral tablet, talk with your doctor.

How clarithromycin is taken

You’ll swallow clarithromycin oral tablet two or three times per day, depending on your infection.

If it’s hard for you to swallow tablets, view this article. It provides suggestions on how to swallow medications that come in pill form.

Also, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist if you’re having difficulty taking your medication. They can offer recommendations about taking it. You may also be able to take an oral suspension (liquid) instead of the tablet.

Clarithromycin coupon

Visit this page to access Optum Perks coupons and get price estimates for clarithromycin when you use the coupons. These coupons can provide significant savings on your prescription costs. 

Note: Optum Perks coupons cannot be used with insurance copays or benefits.

Overdose of clarithromycin

It’s important that you do not take more clarithromycin oral tablet than your doctor prescribes. Doing so can lead to harmful effects.

Symptoms of clarithromycin overdose

Symptoms of an overdose can include:

  • diarrhea
  • vomiting
  • nausea
  • abdominal pain

What to do if you take too much clarithromycin

If you think you’ve taken too much clarithromycin, call your doctor or pharmacist right away. Or you could call 800-222-1222 to speak with someone at America’s Poison Centers. You can also use its online resource. If you have severe symptoms, call 911 or a local emergency number immediately. You can also go to the closest emergency room.

What to ask your doctor

This article describes the usual recommended dosages for clarithromycin oral tablet. If your doctor prescribes this medication, they’ll determine the dosage that’s best for you.

Do not change your dosage of clarithromycin oral tablet without your doctor’s recommendation. You should take clarithromycin oral tablet exactly as your doctor prescribes it. Let your doctor know if you have concerns or questions about your treatment plan.

Here’s a list of some possible questions you may want to ask your doctor:

  • Do I have any health conditions that require a different clarithromycin dosage?
  • Can clarithromycin be taken with other medications?
  • Does my dosage of clarithromycin need to be changed if I take other medications that interact with it?

Disclaimer: Optum Perks has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.

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