Top 100 Drugs Of Choice For Different Diseases

In the world of medicine, the term “drug of choice” holds two distinct meanings: one refers to an illicit substance that individuals may become addicted to, while the other pertains to the primary pharmaceutical treatment for a specific medical condition. This comprehensive guide will focus on the latter, providing a meticulously curated list of drugs that serve as the first-line treatment for a wide range of diseases. Our selection is based on scientific research and expert recommendations. We have divided these drugs into several categories, each tailored to address unique medical needs.

Category 1: Drugs of Choice During Pregnancy

During pregnancy, choosing the proper medication is crucial for the health of both the mother and the baby. Here are the drugs of choice for various conditions during pregnancy:

  1. Chloroquine: The preferred treatment for malaria during pregnancy. [1]
  2. Alpha-Methyldopa: An essential drug for managing hypertension during pregnancy.
  3. Heparin: Used for anticoagulation to prevent blood clot formation in pregnant women.
  4. Labetalol: A go-to option to manage hypertensive crises in expectant mothers.
  5. Acetaminophen: The analgesic drug of choice.
  6. Phenobarbitone: Prescribed for epilepsy in pregnant women.
  7. Doxylamine & Pyridoxine: Effective for managing nausea during pregnancy.

Category 2: Drugs of Choice for Infections

Infections require targeted treatment to ensure a swift recovery and prevent complications. Here are the drugs of choice for various infectious conditions:

  1. Penicillin G: A primary choice for septicemia, meningitis, pericarditis, endocarditis, and severe pneumonia.
  2. Ampicillin: Ideal for treating Listeria and Enterococcus faecalis infections.
  3. Vancomycin: The top pick for MRSA, coagulase-negative Staphylococcus, and Enterococcus faecium infections.
  4. Erythromycin: Recommended for Corynebacterium infections.
  5. Doxycycline: Effective against Bacillus anthracis, Borrelia burgdorferi, Chlamydia, and Rickettsiae.
  6. Cotrimoxazole: The drug of choice for Nocardia infections.
  7. Azithromycin: Preferable for Hemophilus ducreyi and Mycoplasma infections.
  8. Ceftriaxone: Used to combat Proteus, E. coli, and Salmonella infections.
  9. Ciprofloxacin (Ciproxin): The go-to choice for urinary tract infections. Alternative options include nitrofurantoin, oral cephalosporins, or fosfomycin. [2]
  10. Metronidazole: An effective treatment for Trichomonas vaginalis and bacterial infections, including antibiotic-associated colitis.
  11. Ceftazidime: A trusted option for Burkholderia pseudomallei infections.

Category 3: Drugs of Choice for Seizures

Managing seizures requires precise drug selection. Here are the drugs of choice for different types of seizures:

  1. Valproate: Effective for tonic seizures, absence seizures, grand mal (GTCS), clonic seizures, atonic seizures, and myoclonic seizures. [4]
  2. Carbamazepine: Recommended for partial seizures.
  3. Vigabatrin: The drug of choice for infantile spasms with tuberous sclerosis.
  4. ACTH: An essential treatment for infantile spasms.
  5. Lorazepam (IV): Used to manage status epilepticus.
  6. Diazepam: Ideal for treating febrile seizures.
  7. Magnesium Sulfate: The preferred option for seizures in eclampsia.

Category 4: Drugs of Choice for Poisoning

Swift and appropriate intervention is crucial in cases of poisoning. Here are the drugs of choice for various poisoning scenarios:

  1. Physostigmine: The drug of choice for atropine, belladonna, and datura poisoning.
  2. Atropine: Essential in carbamate poisoning, early mushroom poisoning, and organophosphate poisoning.
  3. Flumazenil: An antidote for benzodiazepine poisoning.
  4. Acetylcysteine: Used to counteract acetaminophen poisoning.
  5. Naloxone: The primary choice for opioid poisoning.
  6. Deferiprone: Prescribed for chronic iron poisoning.
  7. Desferrioxamine: Effective in cases of acute iron poisoning.
  8. Glucagon: A lifesaver in beta-blocker poisoning.
  9. Amyl Nitrate: Recommended for cyanide poisoning.

Category 5: Drugs of Choice for Bronchial Asthma

Asthma management necessitates tailored approaches. Here are the drugs of choice for various asthma conditions:

  1. Salbutamol: The drug of choice for acute asthma attacks in normal patients and pregnant women. It is also effective for exercise and aspirin-induced asthma attacks.
  2. Ipratropium: Preferred for acute asthma attacks during labor and in patients on beta-blocker therapy.
  3. Corticosteroids: Indispensable for prophylaxis against bronchial asthma, exercise-induced asthma, and aspirin-induced asthma.

Category 6: Drugs of Choice in Antimicrobials Prophylaxis

Prophylactic measures are essential to prevent infections in specific populations. Here are the drugs of choice for antimicrobial prophylaxis:

  1. Ampicillin: Used to avoid Group B streptococcus infections.
  2. Amoxicillin: Ideal for prophylaxis against endocarditis and otitis media.
  3. Azithromycin: Recommended for Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) and pertussis prophylaxis.
  4. Benzathine Penicillin: Essential in preventing rheumatic fever.
  5. Procaine Penicillin: Recommended for gonorrhea and syphilis prophylaxis.
  6. Tetracycline: Effective against rickettsial infections and plague.
  7. Cefazoline: Preferred for surgical prophylaxis.
  8. Doxycycline: Used to prevent anthrax.
  9. Trimethoprim and Sulphamethoxazole: The drug of choice for toxoplasmosis, pneumocystis, and urinary tract infections.
  10. Rifampicin: Recommended for Hemophilus influenza type B prophylaxis.
  11. Oseltamivir: Effective in preventing influenza Type A & B.

Category 7: Anesthetic Drugs of Choice

Selecting a suitable anesthetic is crucial for patient safety. Here are the drugs of choice for various medical procedures:

  1. Propofol: Ideal for daycare procedures.
  2. Sevoflurane: Recommended for congenital heart disease, including ASD, VSD, and PDA.
  3. Etomidate: A suitable choice for ischemic heart disease.
  4. Ketamine: Indicated for asthma, COPD, shock, CHF, and congenital heart disease with a right-to-left shunt.
  5. Thiopentone: Used for epilepsy and thyrotoxicosis.
  6. Methohexitone: Essential for electroconvulsive therapy.
  7. Isoflurane: Effective for cardiac and neurosurgical procedures and deliberate hypotension induction.

Category 8: Drugs of Choice in Endocrinological Disorders

Effective management of endocrine conditions is vital. Here are the drugs of choice for various endocrinological disorders:

  1. Insulin: The primary treatment for type 1 diabetes, diabetes mellitus during pregnancy, diabetic ketoacidosis, and uncontrolled diabetes.
  2. Metformin: Recommended for type 2 diabetes and diabetes mellitus associated with obesity.
  3. Sildenafil: Indispensable for erectile dysfunction.
  4. Hydrocortisone: Used in cases of acute and chronic adrenal insufficiency.
  5. Nateglinide: Effective for postprandial hyperglycemia.
  6. Methotrexate: The drug of choice for ectopic pregnancy.
  7. Oxytocin: Indicated for postpartum hemorrhage and labor induction.
  8. Cabergoline: Essential in the treatment of acromegaly and hyperprolactinemia.
  9. Finasteride: Recommended for androgenetic alopecia.
  10. Alendronate: Ideal for the management of osteoporosis.

Category 9: Drugs of Choice in Fungal Infections

Fungal infections require specialized treatment. Here are the drugs of choice for various fungal infections:

  1. Amphotericin B: The top choice for meningeal histoplasmosis, endocarditis caused by candida, severe or CNS blastomycosis, and induction therapy for cryptococcal meningitis (for two weeks).
  2. Fluconazole: Effective against Candida albicans and for maintenance in cryptococcal meningitis.
  3. Itraconazole: Recommended for nonmeningeal histoplasmosis, sporotrichosis, paracoccidioidomycosis, mild or non-CNS blastomycosis, chromoblastomycosis, and Penicillium marneffei.
  4. Prednisolone + Itraconazole/Voriconazole: Indicated for allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis.
  5. Caspofungin: The drug of choice for Candida glabrata and Candida krusei infections.

Category 10: Drugs of Choice in Gastrointestinal Disorders

Gastrointestinal issues require specific treatments. Here are the drugs of choice for various gastrointestinal conditions:

  1. Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPIs): Essential for gastric ulcers, duodenal ulcers, stress ulcers, NSAIDs-induced ulcers, GERD, and Zollinger-Ellison syndrome.
  2. Metoclopramide: Used to manage vomiting associated with migraines, drugs, or diseases.
  3. Domperidone: Recommended for levodopa-induced vomiting.
  4. Ondansetron: Indispensable for postoperative or radiation-induced vomiting.
  5. 5HT3 Antagonists: Effective against cisplatin-induced early vomiting.
  6. Lactulose: An essential treatment for hepatic encephalopathy.
  7. Methylnaltrexone: Used to counter opioid-induced constipation.
  8. Octreotide: Indicated for diarrhea in carcinoid syndrome.

Category 11: Drugs of Choice in Hematological Disorders

Hematological disorders require specific treatments. Here are the drugs of choice for various hematological conditions:

  1. Warfarin: The primary choice for DVT prophylaxis, chronic atrial fibrillation in mitral stenosis, advanced kidney disease, and mechanical prosthetic heart valves.
  2. Heparin + Warfarin: Used to initiate therapy in DVT.
  3. Vitamin K: The antidote for warfarin overdose.
  4. Protamine: Used to reverse heparin overdose.

Category 12: Drugs of Choice in Hypertension

Hypertension management necessitates tailored approaches. Here are the drugs of choice for various hypertensive conditions:

  1. Thiazide Diuretics: Essential for managing hypertension.
  2. Prazosin: The drug of choice for hypertension with BPH.
  3. Beta-Blockers: Recommended for hypertension with ischemic heart disease (angina).
  4. ACE Inhibitors: Indispensable for managing hypertension with chronic kidney diseases.
  5. Alpha Methyldopa: An essential treatment for hypertension during pregnancy.
  6. Phentolamine: Used in hypertensive emergencies with a cheese reaction.
  7. Nitroprusside + Esmolol: Indicated for hypertensive emergencies in aortic dissection.
  8. Labetalol: The go-to choice for hypertensive emergencies in pregnancy.

Category 13: Drugs of Choice in Shock

Effectively managing shock is essential for patient survival. Here are the drugs of choice for various types of shock:

  1. Adrenaline: A necessary treatment for anaphylactic shock.
  2. Dopamine or Noradrenaline: Indispensable for cardiogenic shock.
  3. Phenylephrine: Recommended for distributive shock.
  4. Prazosin: Effective in secondary shock.
  5. Dopamine: Indicated for shock with oliguria.
  6. Corticosteroids: Essential in cases of shock due to adrenal insufficiency.

Category 14: Drugs of Choice for Viral Diseases

Viral diseases require targeted treatment. Here are the drugs of choice for various viral infections:

  1. Ribavirin: The preferred treatment for viral hemorrhagic fever, measles, and respiratory syncytial virus (in high-risk patients).
  2. Zanamivir: Effective against oseltamivir-resistant, seasonal, and avian influenza (bird flu).
  3. Acyclovir: Indispensable for treating herpes simplex and varicella. Valacyclovir is used for acute herpes zoster.
  4. Ganciclovir: Used for the management of cytomegalovirus retinitis.


Choosing the right medication is a critical aspect of medical treatment. The drugs of choice listed above are essential tools in the healthcare provider’s arsenal, allowing for precise and effective treatment of a wide range of medical conditions. It is important to note that these choices are based on scientific research and expert recommendations, and individual patient factors should always be considered in clinical practice.

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  1. Pregnancy outcome following first-trimester exposure to chloroquine [Cited 11/29/2020] [Available:,during%20pregnancy%20has%20been%20controversial.]
  2. THE CHOICE OF ANTIBACTERIAL DRUGS. [Cited 11/29/2020] [Available:
  3. Metronidazole. [Cited 11/29/2020] [Available]
  4. Valproate Efficacy in Absence Seizures Is Hard to Beat: Lamotrigine Comes Close [Cited 11/29/2020] [Available]

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8 thoughts on “Top 100 Drugs Of Choice For Different Diseases”

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  4. Excellent thank you so much for this Informations

  5. Ahmed Hamdy

    Thanks for your efforts but a lot of therapeutic areas you mentioned have now more preferable drugs than what you mentioned.

  6. Talha Farooq

    Phenobarbitol is Antiepileptic DOC in pregnancy?
    Isn’t the DOC is lamotrignine or laveteracetam?

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