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Solodyn (Minocycline Hydrochloride) - Warnings and Precautions



Teratogenic Effects


    SOLODYN should not be used during pregnancy or by individuals of either gender who are attempting to conceive a child [see Nonclinical Toxicology & Use in Specific Populations].

    This adverse reaction is more common during long-term use of the drug but has been observed following repeated short-term courses. Enamel hypoplasia has also been reported. TETRACYCLINE DRUGS, THEREFORE, SHOULD NOT BE USED DURING TOOTH DEVELOPMENT.
  • •All tetracyclines form a stable calcium complex in any bone-forming tissue. A decrease in fibula growth rate has been observed in premature human infants given oral tetracycline in doses of 25 mg/kg every 6 hours. This reaction was shown to be reversible when the drug was discontinued.

    Results of animal studies indicate that tetracyclines cross the placenta, are found in fetal tissues, and can cause retardation of skeletal development on the developing fetus. Evidence of embryotoxicity has been noted in animals treated early in pregnancy [see Use in Specific Populations].

Pseudomembranous Colitis

Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD) has been reported with nearly all antibacterial agents, including minocycline, and may range in severity from mild diarrhea to fatal colitis.

Treatment with antibacterial agents alters the normal flora of the colon leading to overgrowth of C. difficile.

C. difficile produces toxins A and B which contribute to the development of CDAD. Hypertoxin producing strains of C. difficile cause increased morbidity and mortality, as these infections can be refractory to antimicrobial therapy and may require colectomy. CDAD must be considered in all patients who present with diarrhea following antibiotic use. Careful medical history is necessary since CDAD has been reported to occur over two months after the administration of antibacterial agents.

If CDAD is suspected or confirmed, ongoing antibiotic use not directed against C. difficile may need to be discontinued. Appropriate fluid and electrolyte management, protein supplementation, antibiotic treatment of C. difficile, and surgical evaluation should be instituted as clinically indicated.


Post-marketing cases of serious liver injury, including irreversible drug-induced hepatitis and fulminant hepatic failure (sometimes fatal) have been reported with minocycline use in the treatment of acne.

Metabolic Effects

The anti-anabolic action of the tetracyclines may cause an increase in BUN. While this is not a problem in those with normal renal function, in patients with significantly impaired function, higher serum levels of tetracycline-class drugs may lead to azotemia, hyperphosphatemia, and acidosis. If renal impairment exists, even usual oral or parenteral doses may lead to excessive systemic accumulations of the drug and possible liver toxicity. Under such conditions, lower than usual total doses are indicated, and if therapy is prolonged, serum level determinations of the drug may be advisable.

Central Nervous System Effects

Central nervous system side effects including light-headedness, dizziness or vertigo have been reported with minocycline therapy. Patients who experience these symptoms should be cautioned about driving vehicles or using hazardous machinery while on minocycline therapy. These symptoms may disappear during therapy and usually rapidly disappear when the drug is discontinued.

Benign Intracranial Hypertension

Pseudotumor cerebri (benign intracranial hypertension) in adults and adolescents has been associated with the use of tetracyclines. Minocycline has been reported to cause or precipitate pseudotumor cerebri, the hallmark of which is papilledema. Clinical manifestations include headache and blurred vision. Bulging fontanels have been associated with the use of tetracyclines in infants. Although signs and symptoms of pseudotumor cerebri resolve after discontinuation of treatment, the possibility for permanent sequelae such as visual loss that may be permanent or severe exists. Patients should be questioned for visual disturbances prior to initiation of treatment with tetracyclines. If visual disturbance occurs during treatment, patients should be checked for papilledema. Concomitant use of isotretinoin and minocycline should be avoided because isotretinoin, a systemic retinoid, is also known to cause pseudotumor cerebri.

Autoimmune Syndromes

Tetracyclines have been associated with the development of autoimmune syndromes. The long-term use of minocycline in the treatment of acne has been associated with drug-induced lupus-like syndrome, autoimmune hepatitis and vasculitis. Sporadic cases of serum sickness have presented shortly after minocycline use. Symptoms may be manifested by fever, rash, arthralgia, and malaise. In symptomatic patients, liver function tests, ANA, CBC, and other appropriate tests should be performed to evaluate the patients. Use of all tetracycline-class drugs should be discontinued immediately.


Photosensitivity manifested by an exaggerated sunburn reaction has been observed in some individuals taking tetracyclines. This has been reported rarely with minocycline. Patients should minimize or avoid exposure to natural or artificial sunlight (tanning beds or UVA/B treatment) while using minocycline. If patients need to be outdoors while using minocycline, they should wear loose-fitting clothes that protect skin from sun exposure and discuss other sun protection measures with their physician.

Serious Skin/Hypersensitivity Reaction

Cases of anaphylaxis, serious skin reactions (e.g. Stevens Johnson syndrome), erythema multiforme, and drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS) syndrome have been reported postmarketing with minocycline use in patients with acne. DRESS syndrome consists of cutaneous reaction (such as rash or exfoliative dermatitis), eosinophilia, and one or more of the following visceral complications such as: hepatitis, pneumonitis, nephritis, myocarditis, and pericarditis. Fever and lymphadenopathy may be present. In some cases, death has been reported. If this syndrome is recognized, the drug should be discontinued immediately.

Tissue Hyperpigmentation

Tetracycline-class antibiotics are known to cause hyperpigmentation. Tetracycline therapy may induce hyperpigmentation in many organs, including nails, bone, skin, eyes, thyroid, visceral tissue, oral cavity (teeth, mucosa, alveolar bone), sclerae and heart valves. Skin and oral pigmentation has been reported to occur independently of time or amount of drug administration, whereas other tissue pigmentation has been reported to occur upon prolonged administration. Skin pigmentation includes diffuse pigmentation as well as over sites of scars or injury.

Development of Drug-Resistant Bacteria

Bacterial resistance to the tetracyclines may develop in patients using SOLODYN, therefore, the susceptibility of bacteria associated with infection should be considered in selecting antimicrobial therapy. Because of the potential for drug-resistant bacteria to develop during the use of SOLODYN, it should be used only as indicated.


As with other antibiotic preparations, use of SOLODYN may result in overgrowth of nonsusceptible organisms, including fungi. If superinfection occurs, SOLODYN should be discontinued and appropriate therapy instituted.

Laboratory Monitoring

Periodic laboratory evaluations of organ systems, including hematopoietic, renal and hepatic studies should be performed. Appropriate tests for autoimmune syndromes should be performed as indicated.



Teratogenic Effects: Pregnancy category D [see Warnings and Precautions]

SOLODYN should not be used during pregnancy. If the patient becomes pregnant while taking this drug, the patient should be apprised of the potential hazard to the fetus and stop treatment immediately.

There are no adequate and well-controlled studies on the use of minocycline in pregnant women. Minocycline, like other tetracycline-class drugs, crosses the placenta and may cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman.

Rare spontaneous reports of congenital anomalies including limb reduction have been reported with minocycline use in pregnancy in post-marketing experience. Only limited information is available regarding these reports; therefore, no conclusion on causal association can be established.

Minocycline induced skeletal malformations (bent limb bones) in fetuses when administered to pregnant rats and rabbits in doses of 30 mg/kg/day and 100 mg/kg/day, respectively, (resulting in approximately 3 times and 2 times, respectively, the systemic exposure to minocycline observed in patients as a result of use of SOLODYN). Reduced mean fetal body weight was observed in studies in which minocycline was administered to pregnant rats at a dose of 10 mg/kg/day (which resulted in approximately the same level of systemic exposure to minocycline as that observed in patients who use SOLODYN).

Minocycline was assessed for effects on peri- and post-natal development of rats in a study that involved oral administration to pregnant rats from day 6 of gestation through the period of lactation (postpartum day 20), at dosages of 5, 10, or 50 mg/kg/day. In this study, body weight gain was significantly reduced in pregnant females that received 50 mg/kg/day (resulting in approximately 2.5 times the systemic exposure to minocycline observed in patients as a result of use of SOLODYN). No effects of treatment on the duration of the gestation period or the number of live pups born per litter were observed. Gross external anomalies observed in F1 pups (offspring of animals that received minocycline) included reduced body size, improperly rotated forelimbs, and reduced size of extremities. No effects were observed on the physical development, behavior, learning ability, or reproduction of F1 pups, and there was no effect on gross appearance of F2 pups (offspring of F1 animals).

Nursing Mothers

Tetracycline-class antibiotics are excreted in human milk. Because of the potential for serious adverse effects on bone and tooth development in nursing infants from the tetracycline-class antibiotics, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or discontinue the drug, taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother [see Warnings and Precautions].

Pediatric Use

SOLODYN is indicated to treat only inflammatory lesions of non-nodular moderate to severe acne vulgaris in patients 12 years and older. Safety and effectiveness in pediatric patients below the age of 12 has not been established.

Use of tetracycline-class antibiotics below the age of 8 is not recommended due to the potential for tooth discoloration [see Warnings and Precautions].

Geriatric Use

Clinical studies of SOLODYN did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently from younger subjects. Other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between the elderly and younger patients. In general, dose selection for an elderly patient should be cautious, usually starting at the low end of the dosing range, reflecting the greater frequency of decreased hepatic, renal, or cardiac function, and concomitant disease or other drug therapy.

Page last updated: 2013-10-01

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