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About Product
Mohamed Imran Lakhi
This content has been written and checked for quality and accuracy by
Mohamed Imran Lakhi Content Administrator GPhC: 2060586 Updated on: 24/09/2021 Next review: 24/03/2022

What is Lymecycline used for?

Lymecycline is a long-acting acne treatment belonging to the tetracycline class of antibiotics.

At Prescription Doctor, you can buy lymecycline as branded Tetralysal or generic lymecycline 408mg capsules.

While Lymecycline has been used to treat many kinds of infections, it is usually used to treat acne which hasn't responded to other treatments.

Lymecycline stops the growth of a bacterium which contributes to the formation of acne spots.

It is recommended to use a topical treatment when taking an oral antibiotic for the treatment of acne. With Prescription Doctor, we offer a combined pack of Epiduo gel and Lymecycline capsules to treat severe acne. You can start your consultation today.

What causes acne?

Acne can be caused by a range of factors - some of these may be easier to manage than others. It's important to speak to your doctor to determine the cause of your acne and seek the most suitable treatment for you.

In many cases, acne is influenced by changes in hormone levels of testosterone and progesterone in men and women. During puberty, fluctuations in these hormones can also cause acne.

Other possible causes of acne include:

  • Medications
  • Pregnancy
  • Menopause
  • Genetics
  • Some cosmetics
  • Smoking

There is currently no strong evidence to prove that diet, poor hygiene or sexual activity causes acne.

How does acne develop?

Acne starts to develop when a pore becomes clogged. This blockage prevents sebum from escaping.

Sebum is an oily substance which forms a protective barrier on the skin's surface. It is secreted from sebaceous glands, which lie just below the surface of the skin.

If a pore becomes blocked, the sebum has nowhere to go, so it builds up below the epidermis.

Bacteria, called Propionibacterium acnes, feed on this build-up of sebum and thrive. These bacteria excrete chemicals which irritate the surrounding tissues and cause inflammation.

Combined with the surplus of sebum, the inflammation causes red, swollen bumps to form on the skin. These can be painful, itchy or dry.

How acne develops under the skin

In most cases, these spots are small and go away on their own within a week or so. But for some people, acne can be a severe and distressing condition which affects them both physically and mentally.

Moderate to severe acne is often characterised by a large amount of blackheads, whiteheads, nodules and cysts. It's often diagnosed based on the clinical image (how the condition looks) by a doctor.

It's important to speak to your doctor about your condition, especially if your acne causing you distress. Your doctor will be able to discuss possible treatment options with you. This may include over-the-counter or prescribed topical acne treatments, such as creams or gels, oral contraceptives (for women) or oral antibiotics.

How does Lymecycline work for acne?

Lymecycline kills bacteria associated with acne called Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes).

P. Acnes feed on sebum beneath the skin and excrete chemicals which irritate the skin and cause inflammation. When a pore becomes clogged, sebum builds up beneath the surface of the skin, which also acts as an environment for the bacteria to thrive.

As they multiply, more of the irritating chemicals are produced, resulting in spots.

Lymecycline kills the bacteria, which reduces their population, allowing the acne spots to improve over time.

How long does Lymecycline (Tetralysal) take to work?

When treating acne with Lymecycline, it may take up to 8 weeks for the effects of the treatment to become noticeable. You may notice a difference within the first week of taking Lymecycline, however this may be different for each person. On average, patients see optimal results after 8 weeks.

It is important to complete the course of antibiotics, even if the symptoms subside or you feel better. Stopping the treatment of antibiotics early can cause the bacterial infection to return or may affect how your body responds to future antibiotic treatments.

If you do not notice an improvement in your condition after 8 weeks, speak to your doctor. They may change your dosage or offer an alternative treatment entirely.

How to take Lymecycline?

Tetralysal and generic Lymecycline are available in 408mg capsules.

Take one Tetralysal or Lymecycline capsule daily.

Swallow the capsules whole with a glass of water.

Do not break, crush or chew lymecycline capsules.

You should take Lymecycline at the same time each day, ideally in the morning.

Instructions on how to take Lymecycline can be found in the enclosed patient information leaflet. If you are still unsure how to take it, speak to your doctor or a pharmacist.

What should I do if I forget to take a dose of Lymecycline?

If you miss a dose of Lymecycline, take it as soon as you remember. If you often forget when to take Lymecycline, set a reminder on your phone or smart device.

Do not take more of the medicine to make up for missed doses.

What should I do if I accidentally take too much?

If you accidentally take too much Lymecycline, speak to your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible.

Lymecycline side effects and cautions

Before taking any medication, it's important to familiarise yourself with the safety information outlined in the patient information leaflet enclosed with your medicine. This leaflet contains important information on how to take and store your medicine, as well as detailed lists of known side effects, ingredients and contraindications. Always retain the leaflet for future reference.

You can view the patient information leaflet for Tetralysal (lymecycline) online.

Who should not take Lymecycline?

Do not take Lymecycline if you:

  • are under 12 years old
  • have ever had kidney disease
  • are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • have ever had kidney disease
  • are allergic to tetracycline or any of the ingredients of Lymecycline

If you are unsure whether Lymecycline is suitable for you, speak to your doctor.

Lymecycline side effects

All medications carry the risk of side effects. Educating yourself on the possible side effects of your medication is important. Not everyone experiences these side effects.

Common Lymecycline side effects include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Stomach ache
  • Diarrhoea
  • Headaches

This is not an exhaustive list of side effects. Further information regarding the safety of Lymecycline (Tetralysal), including a complete list of side effects, can be found within the patient information leaflet enclosed with your medicine.

If you experience any side effects, regardless of whether they are listed above or in the patient information leaflet, report them to your doctor or call NHS 111 for advice.


Do not take Tetralysal or Lymecycline if you are allergic to lymecycline or any of the other ingredients listed within the patient information leaflet.

If you experience the signs of an allergic reaction, stop taking the medicine and seek emergency medical attention by going straight to your nearest accident and emergency department. Remember to take the packaging and any remaining medicine with you so that the doctors know exactly what you have taken.

Signs of an allergic reaction include:

  • Chest tightening
  • Dry, red and cracked skin
  • Itchy, red watery eyes
  • Raised, itchy, red rash (hives)
  • Swelling of the lips, tongue, eyes or face
  • Tummy pain, nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea
  • Wheezing

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

Do not take Lymecycline or Tetralysal if you are pregnant, think you might be pregnant or are breastfeeding.

If you are pregnant, speak to your doctor about alternative treatments which are safer for you and your baby.

If you become pregnant during your course of treatment, inform your doctor straight away. They will discuss alternative treatments for acne with you.

Other safety information

Always seek your doctor's advice before you buy Lymecycline online from Prescription Doctor.

Please inform our doctors of all medicines you are currently taking, including those prescribed by your doctor or bought over the counter, as well as health and herbal supplements.

Do not take Lymecycline or Tetralysal past the expiry date printed on the packaging. The date refers to the last day of the month.

Store Lymecycline capsules in the original packaging and below 25°C.

Never throw away medicine via household or water waste. Take any unwanted or expired medication to your local pharmacy and ask them to discard it safely on your behalf.

Always store medicine out of sight and reach from children and pets.

Never share your medicine with anybody else, even if they experience the same symptoms or have been diagnosed with the same condition as you.

Frequently asked questions

Can I drink alcohol while taking Lymecycline?

Yes, it is safe to drink alcohol in moderation while taking Lymecycline. Avoid drinking more than the recommended 14 units of alcohol per week. Drinking high quantities of alcohol may increase your risk of side effects such as dizziness and nausea.

Can I buy Lymecycline over the counter?

No, lymecycline is only available on prescription and cannot be bought over the counter. With Prescription Doctor, you can buy Lymecycline online following an online consultation with one of our doctors. If our doctor deems the treatment suitable for you, they can issue a prescription for Lymecycline, which our UK based pharmacy can fulfil.

Will Lymecycline affect any other medicines I take?

Your Lymecycline patient information leaflet contains the list of medicines which may interact with Lymecycline. You should speak to your doctor before stopping any medication.

Is Lymecycline the same as Tetralysal?

Tetralysal is a brand name treatment for acne which contains 408 mg of Lymecycline.

Both medicines contain the same active ingredient.

Does Lymecycline (Tetralysal) cause weight gain?

Weight gain has not been reported as a side effect of Lymecycline or Tetralysal. You should always report any side effect you experience to your doctor.

Will Lymecycline affect my contraceptive or birth control pills?

Lymecycline is not known to interact with contraceptive pills. If you experience vomiting or diarrhoea for 24 hours after taking your contraceptive pill, as a side effect of Lymecycline, the contraceptive effect may be reduced. Further information on what to do in this situation can be found within the patient information leaflet for your contraceptive pill. You can also seek advice from your doctor or a pharmacist if you are unsure.

Does Lymecycline affect fertility?

Lymecycline does not impact fertility in men or women. If you are planning on becoming pregnant, speak to your doctor or a pharmacist before taking Lymecycline.

Does Lymecycline cause thrush?

Antibiotics, such as Lymecycline, can cause thrush in some people who take them.

If you experience the symptoms of oral or vaginal thrush during your course of Lymecycline, speak to your doctor or ask a pharmacist for advice.

Does Lymecycline stain teeth?

Lymecycline may stain developing teeth. For this reason, it is not recommended for children under 12 years old, or women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. If you are concerned about side effects associated with Lymecycline, speak to your doctor or a pharmacist.

Table of contents

What is Lymecycline used for?

What causes acne?

How does Lymecycline work for acne?

How to take Lymecycline?

Lymecycline side effects and cautions

Frequently asked questions

Additional resources

10 foods to avoid if you want clear skin

How to use tea tree oil for acne

What causes 'bacne' and how is it treated?

Natural ways to control your acne

Control your hormones; control your acne


NHS, 2018. Lymecycline.

British Association of Dermatologists (BAD), 2020. Acne.

NHS, 2019. Acne: Overview, causes, diagnosis, treatment, complications.

Galderma, 2020. Tetralysal 300mg Hard Capsules: Summary of Product Characteristics

Treatment information

  • Product Name: Lymecycline
  • Active Ingredient(s): Lymecycline
  • Presentation: Capsules
  • Available Quantity: 408 mg
  • Exemption: Prescription Only Medicine
  • Application: Men and women over 18 with acne
  • Dosage: Take one tablet per day
  • Description: Antibiotic treatment for acne
  • Drug Class: Antibiotic
  • Alcohol Consumption: Avoid excessive alcohol consumption
  • When Pregnant: Tell our prescriber if you are pregnant or intend on becoming pregnant
  • When Breastfeeding: Tell our prescriber if you are breastfeeding

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