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Zmax (Azithromycin) - Indications and Dosage



Zmax is indicated for the treatment with mild to moderate infections caused by susceptible isolates of the designated microorganisms in the specific conditions listed below. [See CLINICAL STUDIES]

Acute bacterial sinusitis in adults due to Haemophilus influenzae, Moraxella catarrhalis or Streptococcus pneumoniae.

Community-acquired pneumonia in adults and pediatric patients six months of age or older due to Chlamydophila pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, Mycoplasma pneumoniae or Streptococcus pneumoniae, in patients appropriate for oral therapy. Pediatric use in this indication is based on extrapolation of adult efficacy. [See USE IN SPECIFIC POPULATIONS]

To reduce the development of drug-resistant bacteria and maintain the effectiveness of Zmax and other antibacterial drugs, Zmax should be used only to treat infections that are proven or strongly suspected to be caused by susceptible bacteria. When culture and susceptibility information are available, they should be considered in selecting or modifying antibacterial therapy. In the absence of such data, local epidemiology and susceptibility patterns may contribute to the empiric selection of therapy.

Appropriate culture and susceptibility tests should be performed before treatment to determine the causative organism and its susceptibility to Zmax. [See Clinical Pharmacology] Therapy with Zmax may be initiated before results of these tests are known; once the results become available, antimicrobial therapy should be adjusted accordingly.



Zmax should be taken as a single 2 g dose. Zmax provides a full course of antibacterial therapy in a single oral dose. It is recommended that Zmax be taken on an empty stomach (at least 1 hour before or 2 hours following a meal).

Pediatric patients

For pediatric patients 6 months and older, Zmax should be taken as a single dose of 60 mg/kg (equivalent to 27 mg/lb) body weight. The Zmax dose in mL is equivalent to the child's weight in lb (1 mL/lb dose, see Table 1 below), for a body weight of less than 75 lb (34 kg). It is recommended that Zmax be taken on an empty stomach (at least 1 hour before or 2 hours following a meal).

Pediatric patients weighing 75 lb (34 kg) or more should receive the adult dose (2 g).

Table 1. Zmax Pediatric Dosage Guidelines: 1-dose regimen
Dosing Calculated on 1 mL/lb, Dose 1 mL of Suspension for every 1 lb of Body Weight for Children <75 lb (34 kg)To ensure accurate dosing, a dosing spoon, medicine syringe, or cup is recommended.
Weight 1 mL/lb Dose
Lb Kg Dose Volume
(mg) (mL)
10 5 270 10
15 7 405 15
20 9 540 20
25 11 675 25
30 14 810 30
35 16 945 35
40 18 1080 40
45 20 1215 45
50 23 1350 50
55 25 1485 55
60 27 1620 60
65 30 1755 65
70 32 1890 70
≥75 34 2000 Consume entire contents of bottle

Additional treatment after vomiting with Zmax

In the event that a patient vomits within 5 minutes of administration, the health care provider should consider additional antibiotic treatment since there would be minimal absorption of azithromycin. Since insufficient data exist on absorption of azithromycin if a patient vomits between 5 and 60 minutes following administration, alternative therapy should be considered. Neither a second dose of Zmax nor alternative treatment is warranted if vomiting occurs ≥60 minutes following administration, in patients with normal gastric emptying. In patients with delayed gastric emptying, alternative therapy should be considered.

Instructions for the pharmacist

Constitute with 60 mL of water and replace cap. Shake bottle well before dispensing. Do not refrigerate. Constituted suspension should be consumed within 12 hours.

For pediatric dosing in patients weighing less than 75 lb (34 kg), use of a dosing device is recommended. The pharmacist should inform the patient's caregiver that any suspension remaining after dosing MUST be discarded.


Each bottle of Zmax contains azithromycin dihydrate equivalent to 2 g of azithromycin. After constitution with 60 mL of water, each mL of suspension contains 27 mg of azithromycin. The suspension is a white or off-white color and has a cherry/banana flavor.


NDC 0069-4170-34 for combined adult and pediatric use is supplied in bottles containing 2 g of azithromycin and should be constituted with 60 mL of water.


Before constitution, store dry powder at or below 30°C (86°F).

After constitution, store suspension at 25°C (77°F); excursions permitted to 15–30°C (59–86°F) [see USP Controlled Room Temperature]. Do not refrigerate or freeze.

Constituted suspension should be consumed within 12 hours. For adult patients, the entire bottle should be consumed. For pediatric patients, any suspension remaining after dosing MUST be discarded.

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