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List of general Antibiotics

Antibiotics are primarily used to treat bacterial infections. They may have secondary uses - treatment of the Syndrome of Inappropriate Antidiuretic Hormone (SIADH) secretion with Declomycin. Some antibiotics are also used to prevent infection (antibiotic prophylaxis) before any surgery or in the case of weakened immune systems. There was a study which indicated that about 300 million prescriptions for antibiotics are issued every year in the US alone and the wide spread use or abuse of the antibiotics is a serious issue. For example, an antibiotic can seriously deplete the normal intestinal micro flora which can result in vaginal yeast infection in susceptible women. Indiscriminate use of antibiotics can bring about increased incidences of Streptococcal disease in children apart from enhanced drug resistance.

Antibiotics Families : Penicillins | Cephalosporins | Macrolides | Quinolones | Aminoglycosides | Tetracyclines | Sulfonamides | Other Antibiotics : Antibiotic Side Effects | Antibiotic Interactions | Antibiotics with Alcohol

Antibiotics Classification: Antibiotics are classified under many categories. Commonly they are grouped based on chemical structure and Antibiotics within the same class exhibit similar kind of effectiveness, allergic potential and toxicity. The exhaustive list below also contains drug allergy or other reactions possible for susceptible individuals as appropriate under each class.

Other types of classification:
Bacterial Spectrum: Broad Spectrum Antibiotics are capable of targeting many types of bacteria while narrow spectrum antibiotics target specifically a single class of bacteria. It is generally preferable to use a specific antibiotic for the specific class of bacteria.

Type of Activity: Bactericidal drugs are intended to kill bacteria while bacteriostatic drugs are intended to inhibit the growth of bacteria.

Broad Spectrum Antibiotics: According to a Swiss Study, this class of Antibiotics which act against Gram+ and Gram- bacteria is prone to misuse. Broad Spectrum Antibiotics - specifically the antipseudomonal agents (i.e. cefepime, ceftazidime, ciprofloxacin, imipenem, meropenem, piperacil lin/tazobactam) plus trovafloxacin were found to be misused.

The following list shows the generic names of common antibiotics prescribed and available under various trade names in the US. We have broadly classified them under the common 'family' names.

Broad Spectrum Penicillins / Amoxicillin

Penicillins - one of the oldest type of broad spectrum antibiotics, share common chemical structure with Cephalopsorins. They are classified as Beta-lactam antibiotics. Aminopenicillins such as Ampicillin and Amoxicillin have extended spectrum of action. Extended Spectrum Penicillins are effective against a broad range of bacteria including Pseudomonas Aeruginosa which affect patients with weakened immune systems.

Allergic reactions are common with Penicillins for susceptible individuals. Cephalosporins can cause seizures or affect the blood clotting time for susceptible patients.

  • Ampicillin
  • Bacampicillin
  • Carbenicillin Indanyl
  • Mezlocillin
  • Piperacillin
  • Ticarcillin

Penicillins and Beta Lactamase Inhibitors

  • Amoxicillin-Clavulanic Acid
  • Ampicillin-Sulbactam
  • Benzylpenicillin
  • Cloxacillin
  • Dicloxacillin
  • Methicillin
  • Oxacillin
  • Penicillin G
  • Penicillin V
  • Piperacillin Tazobactam
  • Ticarcillin Clavulanic Acid
  • Nafcillin
  • Procaine Penicillin - Injectable form of penicillin that contains an anesthetic to reduce the pain of the injection. Procaine Penicillin dosage is usually between 600000 to 1 million units per day Intramuscular (IM) for about 10 days for most Upper respiratory tract infection and other simpler bacterial infections. P Penicillin must never be administered intravenously as it can result in anaphylactic shock.


Cephalosporins, one of the largest classes of Antibiotics are used to treat a long list of bacterial infections from around the year 1950. The latest in this class, Ceftaroline is a new fifth generation Cephalosporin - a broad spectrum Antibiotics that shows promise against Gram + bacteria including Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA),Vancomycin Intermediate S.Aureus (VISA), Vancomycin Resistant S.Aureus (VRSA)and Heteroresistant VISA (hVISA).

  • Cephalosporin I Generation Antibiotics
  • Cefadroxil
  • Cefazolin
  • Cephalexin
  • Cephalothin
  • Cephapirin
  • Cephradine

Cephalosporin II Generation Antibiotics

  • Cefaclor
  • Cefamandol
  • Cefonicid
  • Cefotetan
  • Cefoxitin
  • Cefprozil
  • Ceftmetazole
  • Cefuroxime
  • Loracarbef

Cephalosporin III Generation Antibiotics

  • Cefdinir
  • Ceftibuten
  • Cefoperazone
  • Cefixime
  • Cefotaxime
  • Cefpodoxime proxetil
  • Ceftazidime
  • Ceftizoxime
  • Ceftriaxone

Cephalosporin IV Generation Antibiotics

  • Cefepime
  • Cefluprenam
  • Cefozopran
  • Cefpirome
  • Cefquinome

Fourth generation Cephalosporin antibiotics are effective in the treatment of Encephalitis and Meningitis as they cross the blood-brain barrier.

Cephalosporin V Generation Antibioticsor New Generation Cephalosporins - NGCs

  • Ceftolozane
  • Ceftaroline
  • Ceftobiprole

The New Generation Cephalosporins show considerable efficacy against a host of bacteria - from MRSA to respiratory pathogens like Streptococcus Pneumoniae, Haemophilus Influenzae and Moraxella Catarrhalis.
β lactam antibacterial resistance: These fifth generation Cephalosporins inhibit the cell wall synthesis of Penicillin Binding Proteins (PBPs). For example, Ceftaroline's anti MRSA efficacy stems from its high affinity for the MRSA associated (Penicillin Binding Proteins)PBP2a. It may have affinity greater than 256 times over other β lactams.

Ceftaroline is effective against the following:

Gram Positive Bacteria which cause skin infections:
Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) and resistant isolates
Streptococcus Pyogenes
Streptococcus Agalactiae

Gram Positive Bacteria which cause Community Acquired Bacterial Pneumonia (CABP):
Streptococcus Pneumoniae
Staphylococcus aureus(methicillin susceptible isolates)

Gram Negative Bacteria:
Klebsiella Pneumoniae
Klebsiella Oxytoca
Escherichia Coli
Haemophilus Iinfluenzae
Escherichia Coli

Macrolides and Lincosamines

Macrolide Antibiotics have macrocyclic lactone chemical structure. Erythromycin and the newer antibiotics belonging to this broad spectrum class - Azithromycin and Clarithromycin are widely used for their higher level of lung penetration. Erythromycin may rarely result in Myasthenia gravis while Azithromycin may rarely result in Angioedema (Patches of swelling of the skin, mucus membranes and internal organs), Anaphylaxis (hypersensitive reaction due to contact through allergens) or other allergic reactions.

  • Azithromycin
  • Clarithromycin
  • Clindamycin
  • Dirithromycin
  • Erythromycin
  • Lincomycin
  • Troleandomycin

Quinolones and Fluoroquinolones

Fluoroquinolones are synthetically manufactured broad spectrum Antibiotics. Lomefloxacin is reported to cause increased photosensitivity and in some cases may result in convulsion.

  • Cinoxacin
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Enoxacin
  • Gatifloxacin
  • Grepafloxacin
  • Levofloxacin
  • Lomefloxacin
  • Moxifloxacin
  • Nalidixic acid
  • Norfloxacin
  • Ofloxacin
  • Sparfloxacin
  • Trovafloxacin
  • Oxolinic acid
  • Gemifloxacin
  • Perfloxacin

Beta lactam Antibiotics: Carbepenems



List of Antibiotics Antibiotics list

Aminoglycosides : These antibiotics are specifically used to target aerobic, Gram-negative bacteria. Generally useful against Pseudomonos, Acinetobacter and Enterobacter amongst others. Streptomycin is effective to control tuberculosis causing mycobacteria. Antibiotic treatment with Aminoglycosides often involves the use of another antibiotics for overall better synergetic effect.

  • Amikacin
  • Gentamicin
  • Kanamycin
  • Neomycin
  • Netilmicin
  • Streptomycin
  • Capreomycin Sulfate
  • Tobramycin
  • Paromomycin



  • Demeclocycline
  • Doxycycline
  • Methacycline
  • Minocycline
  • Oxytetracycline
  • Tetracycline
  • Chlortetracycline

Tetracyclines are not normally prescribed for children under the age of 8 due to the permanent tooth discoloration these drugs cause.


  • Mafenide
  • Silver Sulfadiazine
  • Sulfacetamide
  • Sulfadiazine
  • Sulfamethoxazole
  • Sulfasalazine
  • Sulfisoxazole
  • Trimethoprim-Sulfamethoxazole
  • Sulfamethizole


Rifampin also known as Rifampicin (Rifadin)


Quinopristin Dalfopristin

Other Antibiotics

  • Bacitracin
  • Chloramphenicol
  • Fosfomycin, Fosfomycin Tromethamine
  • Isoniazid
  • Methenamine
  • Metronidazol
  • Mupirocin
  • Nitrofurantoin
  • Nitrofurazone
  • Novobiocin
  • Polymyxin
  • Spectinomycin
  • Trimethoprim
  • Colistin
  • Colistimethate
  • Cycloserine
  • Capreomycin
  • Ethionamide
  • Pyrazinamide
  • Para-aminosalicyclic acid
  • Erythromycin ethylsuccinate

Topical Antibiotics: Many Antibiotics are available for external application on the skin which include:

Sodium sulfacetamide

Topical medications that act as Comedolytics as well as antibiotics:

Benzoyl peroxide
Azelaic acid
Benzoyl peroxide

Recommended Dosage : Antibiotics dosage is based on many factors:

  • Target Pathogen
  • Choice of Drug
  • Area of Infection
  • Severity of infection
  • Pertinent Patient conditions such as age, renal function
  • Route of administration

Many antibiotics can be administered parenterally - either through Intravenous (IV) or Intra muscular (IM) injections.

You may find some typical usage instructions, dosage, contra indications and side effects - if any for some of the antibiotics listed above in these pages.

Antibiotics for Anaerobic infections

Anaerobes - the kind of bacteria which can not grow in the presence of oxygen, can infect deep wounds and internal organs - sometimes resulting in gangrene, botulism, tetanus and almost all dental infections.
Some common Anaerobic infections

  • Pneumonia, Empyema, Bronchiectasis
  • Appendicitis, Peritonitis
  • Endometritis, Pelvic abscesses
  • Necrotizing Fascitis (destructive infection of the deep skin), Bacteremia (presence of Anaerobic bacteria in the blood)

Many antibiotics do not inhibit/control Anaerobes. But Chloramphenicol, Imipenem, Metronidazole, Clindamycin and Cefoxitin are effective against these bacteria.

New Antibiotics in pipeline: Pseudouridimycin (PUM) is a promising new Antibiotic which inhibits bacterial RNA polymerase (RNAP). What is more, PUM in the research shows its ability to act against drug resistant bacterial pathogens.

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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: December 18, 2018