Benznidazole - oral
Benznidazole - oral
Benznidazole is an antibiotic that is used to treat a certain parasitic infection (Chagas disease). It works by stopping the growth of a certain parasite.
This antibiotic treats only Chagas disease. It will not work for viral infections (such as common cold, flu). Using any antibiotic when it is not needed can cause it to not work for future infections.
Read the Instructions for Use if available from your pharmacist before you start taking benznidazole and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually twice daily (about 12 hours apart). The dosage is based on your weight.
If you have trouble swallowing the tablet, you can dissolve it in a cup of water for 1 to 2 minutes. Swirl the cup gently to mix and then drink the mixture right away. Rinse the cup with more water and drink the rinse water to make sure you have taken the whole dose. The amount of water needed to dissolve the tablet and also to rinse your cup depends on your dose. Ask your pharmacist or doctor for specific instructions.
For the best effect, take this antibiotic at evenly spaced times. To help you remember, take this medication at the same times every day.
Continue to take this medication until the full prescribed amount is finished, even if symptoms disappear after a few days. Stopping the medication too early may result in a return of the infection.
Tell your doctor if your condition lasts or gets worse.
Dizziness, headache, abdominal pain, nausea/vomiting, loss of appetite, or diarrhea may occur. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including:
In the US -
Before taking benznidazole, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to related antibiotics (such as metronidazole, tinidazole); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:
Avoid alcoholic beverages and products containing propylene glycol while taking this medication and for at least 3 days after finishing this medicine because severe stomach upset/cramps, nausea, vomiting, headache, and flushing may occur.
This drug may make you dizzy. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis).
This drug may affect genetic information in cells (genotoxic). Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of this medication.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. You should not become pregnant while using benznidazole. Benznidazole may harm an unborn baby. Women of childbearing age should have a pregnancy test before starting this medication. Ask about reliable forms of birth control while using this medication and for 5 days after stopping treatment. If you become pregnant, talk to your doctor right away about the risks and benefits of this medication.
This medication passes into breast milk. Because of the possible risk to the infant, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor for more details.
See also Precautions section.
Some products that may interact with this drug are:
Do not take benznidazole if you are also taking disulfiram or if you have taken disulfiram within the last 2 weeks.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
This medication has been prescribed for your current condition only. Do not use it later for another infection unless your doctor tells you to.
Lab and/or medical tests (such as complete blood count) may be done while you are taking this medication. Keep all medical and lab appointments. Consult your doctor for more details.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Information last revised October 2018.
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