Antibiotics for respiratory tract infections - active ingredients

There are many different types of antibiotics that can be used, if they are needed, to treat respiratory tract infections. The best antibiotic for your infection will depend on what infection you have and what bacteria are causing it.

The active ingredients in antibiotics for respiratory tract infections include (brand name examples are in brackets):

Know the active ingredient

Medicines for respiratory tract infections may have more than one active ingredient and be available under different brand names. The active ingredient is the chemical in a medicine that makes it work. The medicine label should tell you the active ingredient and the brand name.

Find out more

Like all medicines, antibiotics that you may be taking for a bacterial respiratory tract infection have the potential to cause side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about the possible side effects of your medicine. You should also ask if there are any medicines you should not take with your antibiotic.

Before using any medicine, check with a doctor or pharmacist about the safest one for you or your child.

Always read the information on the label and the consumer medicine information (CMI) leaflet for your medicine. CMI leaflets are available for most prescription and many non-prescription medicines. The consumer medicine information (CMI) for your medicine also lists the most common side effects. Download the CMI for your medicine.