Generic Name: Mefloquine (ME floe kwin)
- This medicine can cause dizziness, loss of balance, ringing in the ears, anxiety, paranoia, low mood (depression), seizures, not thinking clearly or with logic, mood changes, changes in how you act, or hallucinations. These side effects may last for a few months or can be long-lasting and not go away even after the drug is stopped. Do not take mefloquine to prevent malaria if you have mental or mood problems. Call your doctor right away if you have any of these side effects.
Uses of Mefloquine:
- It is used to treat or prevent malaria.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Mefloquine?
- If you have an allergy to mefloquine or any other part of this medicine.
- If you have an allergy to quinidine or quinine.
- If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
- If you have ever had any of these health problems: Anxiety, low mood (depression), psychosis, any other mood problem, or seizures.
- If you are taking ketoconazole.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with mefloquine.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take this medicine with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Mefloquine?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take mefloquine. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert or have clear eyesight until you see how this medicine affects you.
- Have patient safety card with you at all times.
- Have your blood work checked. Talk with your doctor.
- Have an eye exam as you have been told by your doctor.
- Other measures are needed along with mefloquine including using screens, bed netting, insect repellent (10% to 35% DEET), and permethrin spray on clothing and nets. Avoid spraying most insect repellents on children. Lower evening and night-time outdoor activity.
- Avoid alcohol or other drugs and natural products that slow your actions.
- Use birth control that you can trust to prevent pregnancy while taking this medicine and for 3 months after care ends.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using mefloquine while you are pregnant.
- Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.
How is this medicine (Mefloquine) best taken?
Use this medicine as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- If using to prevent malaria, start mefloquine before traveling to the high risk place.
- To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
- Use as you have been told to prevent malaria.
- Take this medicine with food.
- Take with a full glass of water.
- Tablet can be crushed and mixed with food or liquid.
- Keep using mefloquine as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
- Talk with your doctor to find out what to do if you throw up after taking a dose of this medicine.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
- If you miss a dose before leaving for your trip, call your doctor to find out what to do.
- If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
- Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
- Chest pain or pressure or a fast heartbeat.
- Flu-like signs.
- Very nervous and excitable.
- Change in eyesight.
- Memory problems or loss.
- Not able to sleep.
- Some people taking mefloquine have killed themselves (suicide). It is not known if this medicine was the reason for the suicides. Tell your doctor if you are thinking about killing yourself.
What are some other side effects of Mefloquine?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Upset stomach or throwing up.
- Belly pain.
- Loose stools (diarrhea).
- Not hungry.
- Muscle pain.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Mefloquine?
- Store at room temperature.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.
Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
- Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
- This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time mefloquine is refilled. If you have any questions about this medicine, please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take mefloquine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. 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 mefloquine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.
Review Date: September 6, 2017
More about mefloquine
- Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Drug Images
- Drug Interactions
- Support Group
- Pricing & Coupons
- En Español
- 13 Reviews – Add your own review/rating
- Drug class: antimalarial quinolines
Other brands: Lariam