Lincomycin is an antibacterial drug that has found use in the treatment of diseases of the ear, throat, nose, respiratory tissue, skin and soft tissue, bone, joint, dental, and septicemic infections caused by staphylococci, pneumonococci, and streptococci (other than enterococci). It has also been used in the treatment of diphtheria and a variety of anaerobic infections, including actinomycosis.

Primary Uses

Lincomycin has been used in the treatment of serious infections caused by susceptible strains of streptococci, pneumococci, and staphylococci. However, lincomycin generally has been replaced by safer and more effective agents. Not all species or strains of a particular organism may be susceptible to lincomycin. It has been effective in infections in man due to Pneumococci, Strep pyogenes (group A), Strep mitis, and Staph aureus; diphtheria carrier state, erysipelas, staphylococcal infections (strains of proven sensitivity), streptococcal cellulitis, and actinomycosis have shown very good responses.

Veterinary Lincomycin is used im in swine for arthritis and pneumonia, particularly that caused by mycoplasma spp.; to help increase weight gains and feed efficiency in floor raised broilers; Primarily against gram-positive infections especially Staphylococci.

Brand Names

Lincomycin is an active ingredient in the following brand name drugs:

  • Lincomix Injectable
  • Lincocin Sterile Solution (Rx)
  • Lyncomycin hydrochloride tablets


Infections caused by Gram-positive organisms, particularly streptococci and staphylococci (for use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian).


Infections caused by Gram-positive organisms, particularly streptococci and staphylococci (for use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian).

Lyncomycin hydrochloride tablets are used for treatment of skin infections, respiratory tract infections and soft tissue infections.

Toxicity and Adverse Side Effects

In humans, administration of lincomycin, particularly orally, can cause diarrhea in as many as 20% of cases; diarrhea may be severe, requiring withdrawal of drug, and some patients develop pseudomembranous colitis, which may be fatal. Other reported adverse effects of lincomycin include transient increases in serum bilirubin (a bile pigment that is a degradation product of HEME), alkaline phosphatase (a group of enzymes found in all tissues in the body but primarily in the liver, bile ducs, kidney, bone and placenta), and SGOT concentrations (serum glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase, an enzyme that is normally present in liver and heart cells; SGOT is released into blood when the liver or heart is damaged; the blood SGOT levels are thus elevated with liver damage); jaundice; transient leukopenia (decreased concentration of white blood cells in the blood); neutropenia (reduced number of granulocytes in the blood); eosinophilia (an abnormal increase in the eosinophils in the blood); thrombocytopenia (decreased platelets in the blood); and agranulocytosis (total lack of granulocytes in the blood). In small animals the drug may produce diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.