Skip to Content
Get key facts and figures about chronic dry eye

Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops


Generic Name: erythromycin ethylsuccinate (e-RITH-roe-MYE-sin ETH-il-SUX-i-nate)
Brand Name: EryPed

Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops are used for:

Treating infections caused by certain bacteria. It may also be used to prevent attacks of rheumatic fever in certain patients. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops are a macrolide antibiotic. It works by killing or slowing the growth of sensitive bacteria.

Do NOT use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops
  • you have a very slow heartbeat or a certain type of irregular heartbeat (QT prolongation, long QT syndrome)
  • you have low blood potassium or magnesium levels
  • you are taking certain antiarrhythmics (eg, amiodarone, dofetilide, dronedarone, procainamide, propafenone, quinidine, sotalol), asenapine, astemizole, cisapride, diltiazem, eletriptan, an ergot alkaloid (eg, dihydroergotamine, ergotamine), an HIV protease inhibitor (eg, ritonavir), certain imidazole antifungals (eg, itraconazole, ketoconazole, voriconazole), nilotinib, pimozide, a streptogramin (eg, quinupristin/dalfopristin), terfenadine, tetrabenazine, tolvaptan, or verapamil

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops:

Some medical conditions may interact with erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have diarrhea
  • if you have a history of kidney or liver disease; heart problems; a fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat; low blood potassium or magnesium levels; myasthenia gravis; or the blood disease porphyria
  • if you take any medicine that may increase the risk of a certain type of irregular heartbeat (prolonged QT interval). Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure if any of your medicines may increase the risk of this type of irregular heartbeat

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Many prescription and nonprescription medicines (eg, used for aches and pains, allergies, blood thinning, breathing problems, cancer, diabetes, erection problems, gout, hepatitis C infection, high blood calcium levels, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, HIV infection, inflammation, infections, irregular heartbeat or other heart problems, low blood sodium levels, migraine, mood or mental problems, nausea and vomiting, overactive bladder, Parkinson disease, prevention of organ transplant rejection, seizures, stomach problems, trouble sleeping), multivitamin products, and herbal or dietary supplements (eg, herbal teas, coenzyme Q10, garlic, ginseng, ginkgo, St. John's wort) may also interact with erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure if any of your medicines might interfere with erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops:

Use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops by mouth with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
  • Shake well before each use.
  • Use the dropper that comes with erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops to measure your dose. Ask your pharmacist for help if you are unsure of how to measure your dose.
  • Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops.
  • Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops works best if it is taken at the same time(s) each day.
  • To clear up your infection completely, take erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops for the full course of treatment. Keep taking it even if you feel better in a few days.
  • If you miss a dose of erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops.

Important safety information:

  • Mild diarrhea is common with antibiotic use. However, a more serious form of diarrhea (pseudomembranous colitis) may rarely occur. This may develop while you use the antibiotic or within several months after you stop using it. Contact your doctor right away if stomach pain or cramps, severe diarrhea, or bloody stools occur. Do not treat diarrhea without first checking with your doctor.
  • Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops only works against bacteria; it does not treat viral infections (eg, the common cold).
  • Be sure to use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops for the full course of treatment. If you do not, the medicine may not clear up your infection completely. The bacteria could also become less sensitive to this or other medicines. This could make the infection harder to treat in the future.
  • Long-term or repeated use of erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops may cause a second infection. Tell your doctor if signs of a second infection occur. Your medicine may need to be changed to treat this.
  • Infrequently, a serious stomach problem called infantile hypertrophic pyloric stenosis (IHPS) has been reported in infants taking erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops. Contact your child's doctor right away if severe vomiting or irritability with feeding occurs.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Rarely, patients taking erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops have developed reversible hearing loss. The risk is greater if you have kidney problems or you take high doses of erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops. Contact your doctor if you develop decreased hearing or hearing loss.
  • Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops may interfere with certain lab tests. Be sure your doctor and lab personnel know you are taking erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops.
  • Lab tests, including liver function, kidney function, and complete blood cell counts, may be performed while you use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially irregular heartbeat (prolonged QT interval).
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops while you are pregnant. Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops are found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Loss of appetite; mild diarrhea; nausea; stomach pain; vomiting.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); bloody stools; change in the amount of urine produced; decreased hearing or hearing loss; irregular heartbeat; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; seizures; severe diarrhea; severe stomach pain; stomach cramps; symptoms of liver problems (eg, yellowing of the skin or eyes; pale stools; severe or persistent nausea, vomiting, or loss of appetite; dark urine).

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops:

Store erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops at room temperature, below 77 degrees F (25 degrees C). Throw away any unused medicine after 35 days. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops are to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about erythromycin ethylsuccinate drops. If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Review Date: July 5, 2017

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.