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Praziquantel

Generic Name: praziquantel (PRAZ-i-KWON-tel)
Brand Name: Biltricide

Praziquantel is used for:

Treating certain worm infections (eg, schistosoma, liver flukes).

Praziquantel is an anthelmintic agent. It works by killing sensitive worms.

Do NOT use praziquantel if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in praziquantel
  • you have certain worm infections of the eye (ocular cysticercosis)
  • you are breast-feeding
  • you are taking rifampin

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

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Before using praziquantel:

Some medical conditions may interact with praziquantel. 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 liver, kidney, or heart problems, or worm infection of the brain (eg, cerebral cysticercosis)
  • if you have a history of seizures (eg, epilepsy)

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

  • Azole antifungals (eg, itraconazole, ketoconazole), cimetidine, or erythromycin because they may increase the risk of praziquantel's side effects
  • Anticonvulsants (eg, carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin), chloroquine, dexamethasone, or rifamycins (eg, rifampin) because they may decrease praziquantel's effectiveness

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if praziquantel 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 praziquantel:

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

  • Take praziquantel with a full glass of water during meals.
  • Do not crush or chew before swallowing.
  • Take your doses at least 4 hours apart but not more than 6 hours apart unless directed otherwise by your doctor.
  • If you miss a dose of praziquantel, take it as soon as possible. If it less than 4 hours until your next dose, contact your doctor to see if you need to establish a new dosing schedule.

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

Important safety information:

  • Praziquantel may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use praziquantel with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks on the day that you use praziquantel and on the following day.
  • Use praziquantel with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
  • Use praziquantel with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 4 years of age; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you think you may be pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using praziquantel while you are pregnant. Praziquantel is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking praziquantel and for 72 hours after you have stopped taking praziquantel.

Possible side effects of praziquantel:

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:

Dizziness; general feeling of being unwell; headache; nausea; stomach upset.

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

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); bloody diarrhea; fever; seizures; severe or persistent vomiting; slow or irregular heartbeat.

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.

Proper storage of praziquantel:

Store praziquantel below 86 degrees F (30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep praziquantel out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about praziquantel, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Praziquantel 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 praziquantel 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 praziquantel. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to praziquantel. 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 praziquantel.

Issue Date: September 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.003
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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