According to the National Health Service, macrolide antibiotics are a good alternative to penicillin. These antibiotic types are particularly useful in treating patients with lung or respiratory infections. They are often prescribed to patients with penicillin allergies.
The National Library of Medicine states that macrolide antibiotics are bacteriostatic, broad spectrum antibiotics that target gram-positive bacteria. They can treat mild and moderate bacterial infections. The four macrolide antibiotics that are currently approved by the FDA include erythromycin, clarithromycin, azithromycin and telithromycin. All four of these macrolide antibiotics can be used as an alternative to penicillin. Each antibiotic works on different bacteria types.