Halofantrine

Generic Name: halofantrine (ha-loe-FAN-trin)
Brand Name: Halfan

Halofantrine has caused serious, even fatal, heart problems (eg, ventricular arrhythmias), even at the recommended dose. Halofantrine is not recommended for use while other medicines known to cause heart problems (eg, prolonged QT interval) are being used, nor in people who have a history of heart problems or have had unexplained fainting episodes. Your doctor will monitor you closely while you are using halofantrine.


Halofantrine is used for:

Treating malaria in patients who can tolerate oral medicine.

Halofantrine is an antimalarial agent. How it works is not fully understood.

Do NOT use halofantrine if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in halofantrine
  • you have a family history of congenital QT interval prolongation
  • you are taking cisapride or ziprasidone

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using halofantrine:

Some medical conditions may interact with halofantrine. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have heart problems (eg, irregular heartbeat, QT interval prolongation) or a thiamine deficiency, or you experience episodes of fainting

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with halofantrine. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Ketoconazole because it may decrease the effectiveness of halofantrine
  • Arsenic, astemizole, cisapride, dofetilide, ketolides (eg, telithromycin), macrolides (eg, clarithromycin), mefloquine, pimozide, serotonin receptor antagonist antiemetics (eg, droperidol), streptogramins (eg, dalfopristin), terfenadine, and ziprasidone because the risk of side effects, such as QT prolongation, may be increased

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if halofantrine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use halofantrine:

Use halofantrine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take halofantrine on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal.
  • If you miss a dose of halofantrine, contact your doctor.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use halofantrine.

Important safety information:

  • Halofantrine may cause dizziness. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how you react to halofantrine. Using halofantrine alone, with certain other medicines, or with alcohol may lessen your ability to drive or perform other potentially dangerous tasks.
  • Halofantrine may cause increased sensitivity to the sun. Avoid exposure to the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to halofantrine. Use a sunscreen or wear protective clothing if you must be outside for a prolonged period.
  • Halofantrine is not recommended for use in CHILDREN. Safety and effectiveness have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant while taking halofantrine, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using halofantrine during pregnancy. It is unknown if halofantrine is excreted in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while you are taking halofantrine.

Possible side effects of halofantrine:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Cough; diarrhea; dizziness; headache; loss of appetite; nausea; stomach pain; vomiting.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); abnormal skin sensations; chest pain; dark urine; fast heartbeat; fatigue; pale color; seizures; shortness of breath; vision changes.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include decreased consciousness; diarrhea; rapid or pounding heartbeat; stomach pain or cramps; vomiting.

Proper storage of halofantrine:

Store halofantrine at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Keep halofantrine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about halofantrine, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Halofantrine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take halofantrine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about halofantrine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to halofantrine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using halofantrine.

Issue Date: July 2, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.001
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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