Active Ingredients

Josamycin – Effect, Application & Risks


Josamycin is an antibiotic active against anaerobic gram-positive strains of bacteria. In Austria it is mostly alternatively called Josalid . It represents an alternative in the case of an allergy to penicillin . However, hypersensitivity, cross-reactions or side effects can also occur in some patients when Josamycin is administered .

What is josamycin?

Josamycin is an antibiotic that belongs to the macrolide group.

It is both naturally derived from bacterial strains and synthetically produced.

Josamycin is a 16-membered lactone ring that does not contain any amino sugars in the side chain.

Pharmacological effect on body & organs

Josamycin works by binding to the ribosomes of pathogens, thereby blocking their protein synthesis

However, this does not apply to every pathogen. There are also pathogens that are resistant to josamycin. It is therefore important to clarify exactly which disease-causing bacterial strains josamycin is to be administered against when administering it, in order to ensure that the administration can also achieve the appropriate effect.

Medicinal Application & Use for Treatment & Prevention

Josamycin is administered in an oral manner. It is very often given because patients are allergic to penicillin and a highly effective alternative to this antibiotic is needed.

Josamycin works very well on germs that are inside the cells and is well tolerated in most cases with a few exceptions.

The drug is helpful for many anaerobic strains of bacteria, for many gram-positive, but also gram-negative pathogens. Examples where the use of josamycin has a good effect are gram-positive cocci , rod -shaped bacteria such as listeria or corynebacteria, only partly also with hemophilus and also with gram-negative pathogens such as mycoplasma , campylobacter , chlamydia , bacteroides , legionella , bordatella and others.

Areas of application for Josamycin are therefore, among other things, chlamydia and mycoplasma infections, even during pregnancy . Josamycin can also be used in urethritis that does not have a gonorrheal origin.

The drug is also useful for many different infections , including eye infections , upper respiratory tract infections, lower respiratory tract infections, skin infections, and soft tissue infections, among others.

It is important to mention that josamycin works particularly well when high tissue penetration of the antibiotic is required. However, josamycin is not effective against enterobacteria because these bacterial strains are resistant to the active ingredient.

Risks & side effects

In general, Josamycin is one of the drugs that are very well tolerated and where risks and side effects are rare. However, it can also happen with this drug that it is not tolerated. Josamycin is therefore contraindicated in all hypersensitivity reactions, cross-reactions with other macrolide antibiotics, when the mother is breastfeeding or in infants under the age of two months.

If you have liver damage , it is very likely that josamycin will not be well tolerated either and you should clarify this very carefully with your doctor. Likewise, the administration of josamycin is contraindicated in severe renal insufficiency .

Side effects can show up as allergic skin reactions , asthma or pruritus . Statistically, this is the case in 0.4% of all applications. Mild gastrointestinal disturbances occur in up to 12% of cases. Therapy can also be stopped if the side effects become too severe.

Diarrhea , loss of appetite , vomiting or nausea lead to treatment discontinuation in 2% of all cases of use. 1% of therapy discontinuations are due to neurological disorders such as headaches and dizzy spells . Discontinuation of therapy may also be necessary very rarely because cholestatic jaundice has developed.

Also very rarely, the drug is not tolerated because colitis , coating of the tongue , stomatitis or irritation of the mucous membranes occur. Interactions with other medications occasionally occur, for example when these medications also burden the liver metabolism.

Lisa Newlon
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Hello! I am Lisa Newlon, and I am a medical writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry. I have a Master’s degree in Medicine, and my deep understanding of medical terminology, practices, and procedures has made me a trusted source of information in the medical world.