Generic Name: meclizine (MEK-li-zeen)
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on July 13, 2020.
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
- Dramamine II
- Motion Sickness Relief
- Simply Motion
- Travel Sickness
Available Dosage Forms:
- Tablet, Chewable
Therapeutic Class: Antiemetic
Pharmacologic Class: Antihistamine
Chemical Class: Piperazine (class)
Uses for meclizine
Meclizine is used to prevent and control nausea, vomiting, and dizziness caused by motion sickness. It is also used for vertigo (dizziness or lightheadedness) caused by ear problems.
Meclizine is an antihistamine. It works to block the signals to the brain that cause nausea, vomiting, and dizziness.
Meclizine is available only with your doctor's prescription.
Before using meclizine
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For meclizine, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to meclizine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of Antivert® tablets and chewable tablets in children or Antivert®/25 or Antivert®/50 tablets in children younger than 12 years of age. Safety and efficacy have not been established.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of meclizine in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney, or heart problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving meclizine.
Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during breastfeeding.
Interactions with medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking meclizine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using meclizine with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.
Using meclizine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Calcium Oxybate
- Chloral Hydrate
- Gabapentin Enacarbil
- Glycopyrronium Tosylate
- Magnesium Oxybate
- Morphine Sulfate Liposome
- Opium Alkaloids
- Potassium Oxybate
- Secretin Human
- Sodium Oxybate
Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other medical problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of meclizine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Asthma or
- Enlarged prostate or
- Glaucoma—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
- Kidney disease or
- Liver disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.
Proper use of meclizine
Take meclizine only as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.
Chew or crush the chewable tablet completely before swallowing. Do not swallow it whole.
Swallow the tablet whole. Do not crush, chew, or break it.
The dose of meclizine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of meclizine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For oral dosage form (tablets):
- For nausea, vomiting, and dizziness caused by motion sickness:
- Adults—At first, 25 to 50 milligrams (mg) taken 1 hour before travel. You may take another dose once every 24 hours while traveling.
- Children 12 years of age and older—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- Children younger than 12 years of age—Use is not recommended.
- For vertigo:
- Adults—25 to 100 milligrams (mg) per day, taken in divided doses.
- Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For nausea, vomiting, and dizziness caused by motion sickness:
If you miss a dose of meclizine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.
Precautions while using meclizine
It is very important that your doctor check your or your child's progress at regular visits to make sure that meclizine is working properly and to check for unwanted effects.
Meclizine may cause some people to become drowsy or less alert than they are normally. Do not drive or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how meclizine affects you.
Meclizine will add to the effects of alcohol and other CNS depressants (medicines that make you drowsy or less alert). Some examples of CNS depressants are antihistamines or medicine for hay fever, other allergies, or colds, sedatives, tranquilizers, antidepressants, or sleeping medicine, prescription pain medicine or narcotics, medicine for seizures or barbiturates, muscle relaxants, or anesthetics, including some dental anesthetics. Check with your medical doctor or dentist before taking any of the above while you or your child are using meclizine.
Meclizine side effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
Incidence not known
- difficulty swallowing
- fast heartbeat
- hives, itching, skin rash
- puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
- tightness in the chest
- unusual tiredness or weakness
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
- Blurred vision
Incidence not known
- Dry mouth
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
More about meclizine
- Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Patient Tips
- Drug Images
- Drug Interactions
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- 195 Reviews
- Drug class: anticholinergic antiemetics