Antibiotics for Sinus Infections
Because the majority of sinus infections are caused by a virus, antibiotics are not usually prescribed as treatment (they do not help with viruses). However, in some cases, such medications are necessary. Antibiotics that may be recommended for chronic sinusitis include one or a combination of the following:
- Amoxicillin and clavulanate potassium (Augmentin®)
- Moxifloxacin (Avelox®)
- Sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim (Bactrim®, Bactrim® DS, Septra®, Septra® DS, Sulfatrim®).
When used to treat a chronic sinus infection, antibiotics are generally given in higher doses and for longer periods than when used for treating an acute sinus infection.
Antibiotics that might be prescribed for an acute sinus infection include:
- Amoxicillin (Amoxil®)
- Amoxicillin and clavulanate potassium (Augmentin)
- Sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim (Bactrim, Bactrim DS, Septra, Septra DS, Sulfatrim).
You should take your antibiotics exactly as prescribed and take the entire prescription, even if you start to feel better. This will decrease the chances of the antibiotic not completely eliminating the infection.
If your symptoms are not getting better on the antibiotic, or if they come back, you should be seen again by your healthcare provider. Further testing or a different antibiotic may be recommended.
(Click Sinus Infection (Sinusitis) Medicines for an in-depth look at the medications used to treat sinus infections. This article discusses decongestants, steroid nasal sprays, and more.)