20+ Difference between Bacitracin and Neosporin

A cut finger, a scraped toe, or a burned arm causes more than simple discomfort. If these cuts become infected, they might become much more serious.

To alleviate your symptoms, you might try an OTC medication. First aid kits often include a topical antibiotic like Bacitracin or Neosporin to treat and prevent infection in cuts, scrapes, and burns.

Despite their comparable use, the active components in these medications are distinct. As a result, some consumers may find that one product is preferable to the other.

Comparison Between Bacitracin And Neosporin

AntibioticsBacitracin is an antibiotic that can be produced from the contents of a single bottle of bacitracin, which only contains enough medicine for a single delivery. Therefore, one dosage can be obtained from the contents of a single bottle of bacitracin.In making Neosporin, antibiotics of the bacitracin, polymyxin, and neomycin kinds were included. There is more than one kind of antibiotic in Neosporin; these antibiotics do not fall into a single category.
ReactionBacitracin and other antimicrobial drugs produce the function for which they were intended by suppressing the growth of germs like bacteria. This is the primary mechanism by which they work. This is a fundamental mechanism that antimicrobials use to accomplish their goals.When given to a sick patient, Neosporin can either completely halt the growth of germs or greatly slow the rate at which they expand. Either way, it protects the patient from becoming worse.
EffectivenessBecause it is legitimate to compare Bacitracin’s efficacy to Neosporin’s, it is vital to bear in mind that Bacitracin is not even close to being as effective as Neosporin.When compared to the antibiotic Bacitracin, the effectiveness of Neosporin is superior in a wide variety of distinct ways, each of which may be broken down further into specific domains. Therefore, when comparing the effectiveness of Bacitracin with Neosporin, this is the situation that arises.
Reaction with bacteriaBacitracin is effective against certain germs, but not others, and the degree to which it is successful varies depending on the germ treatment. Bacitracin is not effective against some bacteria but is effective against others.If used correctly, Neosporin can eliminate a broad range of bacterial strains; however, this only holds true if the medication is administered as directed. On the other hand, this is something that will only be true if the medication is consumed in a suitable way.

Major Difference Between Bacitracin And Neosporin

What exactly is Bacitracin?

Bacitracin is an over-the-counter antibiotic ointment used to treat and prevent infection in minor skin injuries such as cuts, scrapes, abrasions, and burns.

Bacitracin does not need a prescription to be purchased. Bacitracin may be found in the vast majority of pharmacies.

This topical medication contains just bacitracin, which is the only antibiotic that can be found in it.

Key Difference: Bacitracin

  • Bacitracin does not have the broad spectrum of action that Neosporin has, which is what makes Neosporin so effective against such a wide variety of infectious disorders. 
  • Bacitracin is not as effective as Neosporin. However, bacitracin may be purchased over the counter and does not need a doctor’s prescription. It is also quite affordable.
  • Because it is so powerful at removing germs from cuts and scrapes, it is a great choice for treating first-aid injuries. In addition, bacitracin can halt bacterial growth.
  • People with extensive or serious wounds shouldn’t use them since it might worsen their condition.

What exactly is Neosporin?

Neosporin is a topical antibiotic available under its brand name and its generic form. It may be purchased without a prescription as a cream or an ointment.

If you get a minor scrape, burn, or cut, you may use it to treat the wound and prevent infection simultaneously.

Antibiotics bacitracin, polymyxin, and neomycin are included in this specific medication as some of its basic elements.

Key Difference: Neosporin

  • Using Neosporin kills any germs or bacteria that could already be there and stops any bacteria from multiplying should they already be there.
  • It has been shown that Neosporin is effective against a wide variety of bacterial strains as well as fungal spores.
  • It can shorten the amount of time it takes for your wound to recover from its injury.
  • Products formulated as topical balm, lotion, spray, and foam may be purchased without needing a prescription from a medical professional.

Contrast Between Bacitracin And Neosporin


  • Bacitracin- The structure of bacitracin may be represented chemically as C66H103N17O16S, and it is a polypeptide. This formula might be seen as representing its structure of it on the molecular level.

    Bacillus licheniformis bacteria are the ones that are responsible for the synthesis of this polypeptide antibiotic.

    They do this by combining other cyclic peptides with a quite similar structure. The Tracy I strain was not investigated in isolation of this bacterium for the first time until 1945.
  • Neosporin- The drug known as Neosporin has the formula C23H46N6O13 in its chemical makeup. It is beneficial in avoiding infections and expediting the healing process for small skin wounds such as cuts, scrapes, and burns.

    A variety of injuries may cause these wounds. Even if you do not have a prescription for this drug, you are allowed to treat yourself with it if you feel it is necessary.


  • Bacitracin- To make this point absolutely crystal clear, the component of the drug that is responsible for the actual action of the drug is called bacitracin.

    This medication is advertised and sold under the brand name Bacitracin, and bacitracin is the component of the drug that is responsible for the actual action of the drug.
  • Neosporin- Antibiotics bacitracin, neomycin, and polymyxin b are all components of the Neosporin medication, sold under its brand name.

    However, each of these antibiotics is sold separately. On the other hand, each of these antibiotics may be purchased alone.

    There are many different formulations of Neosporin accessible, and each of these formulations has a different group of active components in contrast to the others. Neosporin is available in a broad range of different forms.


  • Bacitracin- Bacitracin has a molar mass of 1422.7 g/mol. The number of hydrogen atoms that may donate to a bond is 17, while the number of atoms that can receive a bond is 21. Not only that, but bacitracin possesses 31 rotatable bonds.

    Its complexity is 2850 degrees, and there are 15 distinct stereoscopic foci. At room temperature, bacitracin is solid, and its melting point is between 221 and 225 degrees Celsius. It dissolves easily in liquid.
  • Neosporin- The active ingredient in Neosporin is neomycin. Its molecular mass is 614.6 g/mol, and its chemical formula is C23H46N6O13. The number of hydrogen bonds it can donate is 13, and the number of bonds it can absorb is 19.

    The total number of rotatable bonds is 9. An approximate value of 872 degrees indicates the complexity of this chemical.

    There are a total of 19 stereocenters among the atoms that have been defined. The melting point of this chemical is low, and it is often found in a liquid condition at ambient temperature (6 degrees Celsius).


  • Bacitracin- Bacitracin is a kind of antibiotic that works by stopping the growth of bacteria by modifying the environment so that it is less conducive to the growth of bacteria.

    This makes the environment less likely to support the growth of bacteria. The ameliorating effects of the therapy may be said to be carried about in this manner.
  • Neosporin- Antibiotics, such as those that may be found in Neosporin, cannot only eliminate any bacteria or germs that may already be present in the body but also to stop the growth of any new bacteria that may emerge in the future.

    Because of its antibacterial properties, Neosporin is more effective against many bacterial species than Bacitracin. This makes it a superior choice for treating bacterial infections.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. What other topical antibacterial ointment do you think works better than Neosporin?

Preparations of petroleum jelly, such as those marketed and sold under the trade name Vaseline, are one example of an alternative to antibiotics like bacitracin and Neosporin.

Itching and other annoying sensations could be prevented or lessened due to the jelly’s capacity to keep wounds from drying out.

Q2. Is the use of bacitracin in an open wound even a possibility?

To treat minor skin injuries, such as cuts, scrapes, and burns, bacitracin, a topical antibiotic ointment, is often used.

Bacitracin must be administered directly to the afflicted region to treat skin infections. Both medical professionals and regular folks have expressed satisfaction with this balm.

Q3. When applying bacitracin to the skin, how long should it sit before washing off?

If the bandage appears red or begins to come loose, reinforce it using gauze and tape to bring it back into place. 

Applying ointments containing bacitracin or polysporin for a period of time between one and two weeks is perfectly safe. 

After applying a band-aid or a nonstick gauze pad to the wound, wrap it with paper tape and finish by applying a dressing.

Q4. In what circumstances is the use of Neosporin not recommended?

Neosporin is intended just for topical application to the skin. The drug should be stored where it will not come into contact with the eyes, nose, or mouth. If this happens, rinse it off with water.

When treating an area with Neosporin, it is important to refrain from using any other medicinal creams, lotions, ointments, or other skin treatments for that region.

Q5. Does the use of Neosporin hasten the healing of wounds?

Cuts, scrapes, and minor burns are just some of the minor injuries that Neosporin ointment may help heal. It may also ease any pain or discomfort that may be experienced throughout the healing process.

On the other hand, effective wound care may do the same thing without the use of a topical antibiotic, which is associated with several potential adverse effects and hazards.

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