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Mebendazole (me-BEN-da-zole) belongs to the family of medicines called anthelmintics ( ant-hel-MIN-tiks) . Anthelmintics are medicines used in the treatment of worm infections.
Mebendazole is used to treat:
This medicine may also be used for other worm infections as determined by your doctor.
Mebendazole works by keeping the worm from absorbing sugar (glucose). This gradually causes loss of energy and death of the worm.
Mebendazole is available only with your doctor's prescription, in the following dosage form:
Before Using This Medicine
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 mebendazole, the following should be considered:
Allergies- Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to mebendazole. Also tell your health care professional if you are allergic to any other substances, such as foods, preservatives, or dyes.
Pregnancy- Mebendazole is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It has been shown to cause birth defects and other problems in rats given a single dose, which was several times the usual human dose. However, mebendazole did not cause birth defects or other problems in women who took this medicine during the first 3 months of pregnancy. Be sure you have discussed this with your doctor.
Breast-feeding- It is not known whether mebendazole passes into the breast milk. Although most medicines pass into breast milk in small amounts, many of them may be used safely while breast-feeding. Mothers who are taking this medicine and who wish to breast-feed should discuss this with their doctor.
Children- This medicine has been tested in a limited number of children 2 years of age or older and, in effective doses, has not been shown to cause different side effects or problems in children than it does in adults.
Older adults- Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if they cause different side effects or problems in older people. There is no specific information comparing use of mebendazole in the elderly with use in other age groups.
Other 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. Tell your health care professional if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.
Other medical problems- The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of mebendazole. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
Proper Use of This Medicine
Mebendazole usually comes with patient directions. Read them carefully before using this medicine.
No special preparations or other steps (for example, special diets, fasting, other medicines, laxatives, or enemas) are necessary before, during, or immediately after taking mebendazole.
Mebendazole tablets may be chewed, swallowed whole, or crushed and mixed with food.
For patients taking mebendazole for hookworms, roundworms, or whipworms :
For patients taking mebendazole for pinworms :
For patients taking mebendazole for infections in which high doses are needed:
The dose of mebendazole 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 mebendazole. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
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 taking mebendazole .
If you miss a dose of this medicine, 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.
To store this medicine:
Precautions While Using This Medicine
It is important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits, especially in infections in which high doses are needed. This is to make sure that the infection is cleared up completely and to allow your doctor to check for any unwanted effects.
If your symptoms do not improve within a few days, or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
For patients taking mebendazole for pinworms :
For patients taking mebendazole for hookworms or whipworms :
Side Effects of This Medicine
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 as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
Other 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. However, check with your doctor if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome:
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT