Pyrantel

Generic Name: Pyrantel

Pyrantel is an "antihelmintic," or anti-worm, medication. It prevents worms from growing or multiplying in your body.

Pyrantel is used to treat infections caused by worms such as pinworm and roundworm.

Pyrantel may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

Take the whole dose of pyrantel. It can be taken with food or on an empty stomach at any time during the day.

Follow your doctor's instructions or the instructions that accompany the package about treatment; about washing of clothes, linens, and towels; and about household disinfecting. Pinworm infections are easily spread from one person to another.

Before taking pyrantel, talk to your doctor about any other medical conditions that you have. Pyrantel should not be used if you have liver disease or if you have had an allergic reaction to this medicine in the past.

Do not take pyrantel without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.

Do not take pyrantel without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Children younger than 2 years of age should not use pyrantel unless otherwise directed by your doctor.

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Pyrantel pamoate acts as a depolarizing neuromuscular blocking agent, thereby causing sudden contraction, followed by paralysis, of the helminths. This has the result of causing the worm to "lose its grip" on the intestinal wall and be passed out of the system by natural process. Since Pyrantel is poorly absorbed by the host's intestine, the host is unaffected by the small dosage of medication used. Spastic (tetanic) paralyzing agents, in particular pyrantel pamoate, may induce complete intestinal obstruction in a heavy worm load. This obstruction is usually in the form of a worm impaction and happens when a very small, but heavily parasitized animal is treated and tries to pass a large number of dislodged worms at once. Worms usually pass in normal stool or with diarrhea, straining, and occasional vomiting.

This medication is used to treat intestinal worm infections such as pinworm, roundworm, and hookworm. Pyrantel belongs to a class of drugs known as anthelmintics. It works by making the worms unable to move (paralyzed) so that the body can remove them naturally in the stool.This medication may be used to self-treat pinworm infections. For other types of worm infections (such as roundworm, hookworm), use this product only as directed by your doctor. Do not use this medication in children younger than 2 years unless directed by the doctor.

Seek emergency medical attention if you experience an allergic reaction (swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; shortness of breath; closing of your throat; or hives).

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take pyrantel and talk to your doctor if you experience

  • nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, or a decreased appetite;
  • headache;
  • drowsiness or dizziness;
  • insomnia; or
  • a rash.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

Take pyrantel exactly as directed by your doctor or as directed in the package labeling. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Take each dose with a full glass of water.

Pyrantel may be taken with or without food at any time of the day.

Shake the suspension well before measuring a dose.

Use a dose-measuring spoon, cup, or dropper (not a regular tablespoon) to ensure that you measure the correct dose of medication. Ask your pharmacist where you can get a dose-measuring device if you do not have one.

Fasting, laxatives, and purging will not help cure this infection.

Treatment of family members and other close contacts may be necessary. Pinworm is spread very easily to others in close contact with the infected person.

Toilets must be disinfected daily and clothing, linens, towels, and pajamas must be changed and washed daily.

Store pyrantel at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Seek emergency medical attention.

Since pyrantel is usually taken in one dose, you are not likely to miss a dose.

Treatment of family members and other close contacts may be necessary. Pinworm is spread very easily to others in close contact with the infected person.

To prevent reinfection, toilets must be disinfected daily, and clothing, linens, towels, and pajamas must be changed and washed daily.

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Pyrantel may cause dizziness. If you experience dizziness, avoid these activities.

Do not take other anti-worm medicines at the same time as pyrantel unless otherwise directed by your doctor. Other drugs used to treat infections caused by worms may decrease the effectiveness of pyrantel.

Theophylline (Theo-Dur, Theolair, Theochron, Theo-Bid, Elixophylline, others) may have dangerous side effects when taken during therapy with pyrantel. Your doctor may want to monitor your theophylline blood levels.

Drugs other than those listed here may also interact with pyrantel. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines.

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order certain lab tests to check your response to pyrantel.

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Your prescription is probably not refillable. If you still have symptoms of infection after you finish the pyrantel, call your doctor.

It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements.

Contraindications

Hypersensitivity

Intestinal obstruction

Hepatic disease

Cautions

Caution in anemia, hepatic impairment, malnutrition

Some products may contain sodium benzoate

Treat all family members in close contact with the patient (infection easily spread)

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