Meds and you

30 September 2013

Pyrantel

Pyrantel is an antihelmintic drug. Antihelmintic drugs are drugs that are used in the treatment of worm infestations.

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Pyrantel is the active ingredient of Combantrin.

General information
Pyrantel is an antihelmintic drug. Antihelmintic drugs are drugs that are used in the treatment of worm infestations.

In South Africa pyrantel is registered for the treatment of roundworm, pinworm and hookworm infestations.

Adverse effects with piperazine are minimal and often related to the dose taken. It is usually self-limiting. It should however be noted that pyrantel may cause temporary drowsiness or dizziness. This may affect your ability to drive or to perform task requiring mental alertness.

To avoid re-infestation it is furthermore advised to wash bedding and all clothing in warm water in conjunction with pyantel treatment.

How does pyrantel work?
Pyrantel paralyzes susceptible worm species. While paralyzed, the worm is expelled from the body in stools.

Fast facts

Available as: pyrantel is available as tablets and suspension.
What does it do? Pyrantel is used for the treatment of worm infestations.
Overdose risk: medium
Dependence risk: low
Is pyrantel available as a generic? no

Special precautions
Consult your doctor before using this drug if:

  • you are anaemic

  • you suffer from malnutrition

  • you have impaired liver or kidney function

  • you are pregnant

  • you have a disease affecting the function of your muscles

Pregnancy: avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your baby. Consult your doctor before using this drug, or if you are planning to fall pregnant.
Breastfeeding: avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your baby. Consult your doctor before use.
Porphyria: avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your condition. Consult your doctor before use.
Infants and children: this medication is not intended for use in children under the age of 2 years
The elderly: no special precautions need to be taken.
Driving and hazardous work: caution is advised as use of this medication may lead to dizziness, light-headedness and/or sedation. Avoid such activities until you know how this medication affects you.
Alcohol: avoid concomitant use of alcohol with this medication.

Possible side effects

Side Effect

Frequency
Consult your doctor

Common
Rare
Only if severe
In all cases

abdominal cramps

X
X

nausea/vomiting

X
X

headache

X
X

loss of appetite

X
X

diarrhoea

X
X

dizziness

X
X

skin rash

X
X

insomnia

X
X

Interactions

piperazine reduced effect of antihelmintic
theophylline risk of theophylline toxicity

Disease interactions
Consult your doctor before using this drug if you are anaemic, malnutritioned, impaired liver or kidney function or if you have a disease affecting the function of your muscles.

Overdose action
A small overdose is no cause for concern. In case of intentional large overdose seek emergency medical attention.

Recommended dosage
Adults: oral, 10 mg/kg as a single dose with a maximum dose of 1 g

This material is not intended to substitute medical advice, but is for informational purposes only. Please consult a physician for specific treatment and recommendations.
 
 

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