What Are The Differences Between Antibiotic and Painkillers?

Female Doctor Hand Holding Pack Of Different Tablet

Doctors mainly prescribe painkillers and antibiotics frequently, but what are the differences between antibiotic and painkillers? These two kinds of medicines have different actions. However, they are essential in treating patients during infection or severe pain.

Difference between Antibiotics and Painkillers 


Antibacterials are commonly known as antibiotics, and these are medications that treat bacterial infections. They are a class of drugs used to fight germs invading the human body by preventing their reproduction and killing them. Doctors only prescribe antibiotics in cases of infection. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, like certain methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus strains, might emerge due to excessive antibiotic usage (MRSA). Since the traditional antibiotics used for the MRSA treatment are no longer beneficial against these strains, alternative “last resort” medications must be utilised, which is problematic for the medical community.

Antibiotics And Painkillers

In medical research history, this medicament represents a significant invention. Penicillin was the first antibiotic to be discovered. Ultimately, penicillin’s discovery opened the door for the exposure of additional antibiotics, many of which now play a crucial part in treating various infections.

There are different classes of antibiotics: cephalosporins, lipopeptides, glycopeptides, macrolides, and aminoglycosides are a few of the several types of antibiotics. There are many microbe-type targets for every categorization. Depending on the action, antibiotics may prevent the formation of the bacterial cell wall, while others prevent the production of proteins by binding to ribosomes. Other antibiotics prevent DNA transcription and replication by attaching to the DNA gyrase enzyme. Antibiotics should be carefully selected based on the bacteria causing the infection since there is a high risk that resistance may develop to the antibiotic.


A class of drugs called painkillers is used to treat pain. They are also known as analgesics. These drugs reduce the body’s synthesis of prostaglandins, which alert us to physical pain during illness. They, thus, lessen the pain that the person taking the painkiller feels by decreasing the synthesis of prostaglandins. This often reduces inflammation when these medications work by lowering prostaglandin synthesis.

Depending on the action and objectives, they are classified in several ways. Their responses might range in intensity depending on their class. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDs), which may be used for pain or inflammation, are the most commonly used. The well-known painkillers are paracetamol, aspirin and nimesulide.

COX-2 inhibitors, Flupirtine, NSAIDS, morphinomimetics, opiates, and other particular drugs are some of the five groups of painkillers. The first class also contains paracetamol; however, unlike the other class members that operate on the cyclooxygenase and block it, the mechanism of action of paracetamol is not yet known.

The individual may ultimately experience relief from pain and inflammation thanks to these effects of reduced prostaglandin production. The COX-2 inhibitors likewise target cyclooxygenase, but they are more specialised for the variation strain directly associated with analgesic effects. Also, NSAIDs block COX-1, which may cause several adverse effects. Opiates are created from morphine and opiate receptors. These painkillers are the strongest and most likely to cause tolerance and dependency.

However, during bacterial infection, antibiotics work to kill and inhibit it until the immune system of the body can fight it off. Painkillers reduce the symptoms of an infection so it is felt less until the body can rid itself of the infection. However, painkillers do not prevent a disease from developing.

Painkillers and antibiotics, although via distinct mechanisms, help a person feel better during an illness and recover from that infection.


So what are the differences between antibiotic and painkillers? Painkillers or analgesics soothe the patient and provide pain relief, while antibiotics treat the patient by eradicating or inhibiting the microbes that cause infection. Different drug classes may be utilized concurrently in specific situations and depending on the situation. Considering the potential for drug-drug interactions regarding antibiotics and painkillers, they may be administered together.

Contact Form

  • Contact

    This is to contact our corporate office. If you’re interested in contacting an individual QuickRx pharmacy, please visit our Locations Pages or you can Give Us a Call at the Headquarters (212) 249-8202. If you want immediate specialty pharmacy services please call: (347)-691-3494