Lariam tablets contain the active ingredient mefloquine. Lariam 250 mg tablets are used to treat and prevent malaria. Malaria is caused by plasmodium parasites that enter our body through a mosquito bite. Malaria disease is common in African, South American, and South Asian countries.
Lariam is used to prevent malaria infection when you are travelling to malaria-risk regions. It is also used to treat malaria. Malaria is a life-threatening disease and a major health risk for travellers visiting tropical countries.
Malaria is a parasitic infection in which the malarial parasite enters the blood through a female mosquito bite. The parasite grows in our red blood cells. Lariam enters red blood cells and interferes with the growth of parasites, and kills them.
The main benefit of Lariam is that it prevents getting sick with malaria when you are travelling in malaria risk areas. Lariam is also used in the treatment of malaria.
It would be best if you took Lariam as directed by your doctor. Always read the Patient Information Leaflet that comes along with the medicine box. If you still have any doubts on how to take Lariam, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Lariam is an oral medication. Never take Lariam tablet on an empty stomach. Take it just after having some food or milk. If you feel face difficulty swallowing the whole tablet, you can crush the tablet and mix with milk or juice and drink it.
When you take Lariam to prevent malaria, you need to start treatment at least one week before travel. The dose is one Lariam tablet per week. Then continue taking Lariam tablet once a week. It would help if you continued taking Lariam 4 weeks after your return from the malaria risk zone. Consult your doctor if you could not complete the course of treatment.
Do not stop medication in between. Complete the entire course of treatment as advised by your doctor or pharmacist. Avoid missing any dose and take each dose as scheduled. If you miss a dose, please take it immediately as soon as you remember. When you are taking Lariam once a week, take it on the same day each week.
Lariam tablets are used to prevent or treat malaria. The treatment schedule is different for both.
For malaria prevention:
You need to take one tablet of Lariam every week on the same day. Start taking Lariam tablet one week before you travel and continue taking it once a week throughout your stay in a malaria-risk area. You need to continue taking Lariam tablets for one more month after your return.
For malaria treatment:
Your doctor will advise you of the treatment schedule. The doctor will decide the dose and frequency of Lariam tablets based on your body weight and whether you are staying in a malaria-risk area. In general, you should not take more than six tablets in total.
The usual dose for people weighing between 45 - 60 kg is five Lariam tablets. Three tablets should be taken initially, and the remaining two tablets should be taken 6 - 8 hours later. For people weighing more than 60 kg, the usual dose is six Lariam tablets. Three tablets are to be taken initially, and the next two tablets 6 - 8 hours later. The remaining one tablet needs to be taken 6 to 8 hours after the second dose. If your body weight is less than 45 kg, your doctor will suggest you dose base on your exact body weight.
The dosage for children is lesser than the adult dose. Your doctor will advise you to correct the dose based on the body weight of the child. Lariam tablets should not be given to babies under three months of age. The dose of Lariam for ages between 3 months and five years (bodyweight 5-19 kg) is ¼ tablet once a week. For children between the ages of 6 and 8 years (bodyweight 20-30 kg), the dose is ½ tablet every week. For children aged 9 to 14 years (Bodyweight between 31-45 kg), ¾ tablet once a week is the recommended dose.
Children may experience early vomiting when they take this medicine, so always give Lariam tablet to a child in consultation with your doctor or pharmacist. If your child gets nausea or vomits after taking a Lariam tablet, call your doctor to know about any medicine needed to stop stomach upset.
You should avoid taking Lariam if you have or have previously experienced:
An allergy to mefloquine or any of the ingredients used in Lariam tablet.
Allergy to similar medicines such as quinine or quinidine
Depression, thoughts about suicide, and self-endangering behaviour
Any other mental problem, including anxiety disorder, schizophrenia, or psychosis (losing touch with reality).
Fits (seizures or convulsions)
Severe liver problems
If any of the above applies to you, discuss it with your doctor. Accordingly, your doctor can prescribe a different medicine for the prevention or treatment of malaria.
Also, consult your doctor immediately if you are already taking halofantrine or you have been prescribed a course of halofantrine. Halofantrine is also an antimalarial drug. If halofantrine and Lariam are taken at the same time, it may cause an increase in heartbeat. Therefore, to help avoid dangerous changes in heart rhythm, do not take Lariam if you are already taking halofantrine or have taken halofantrine within the last 15 weeks.
You should not take Lariam if:
You have had an allergic reaction to mefloquine or related compounds quinine and quinidine.
You have a history of convulsions or epilepsy.
You are having depression or have a history of severe mental illness.
You have had an allergic reaction to any of the ingredients listed in the product leaflet.
Lariam tablets may cause some undesirable side effects. Please keep in mind that every person taking Lariam will not experience side effects. You may get stomach upset, headache, nausea or vomiting, diarrhoea, or muscle pain when taking Lariam tablets. Talk to your doctor if the side effects are severe.
Serious side effects are not expected. Sometimes, the patient may experience severe side effects like loss of coordination, vision changes, tingling sensation in hands or feet, numbness in hands and feet, dark coloured urine, severe nausea or continuous vomiting, and yellowing of the eyes or skin. You need immediate medical help if you experience severe side effects.
Allergy to Lariam is rare. But if you see any allergic reaction rash, severe dizziness, itching or swelling of the face/tongue/throat, and trouble breathing, seek immediate medical help.
You should talk to your doctor immediately if you see any side effects while taking Lariam.
Also, inform your doctor about your allergies to other drugs like quinidine or quinine if you have. Very rarely, the inactive ingredients of Lariam tablets may cause some allergic reactions.
Always discuss with your doctor your medical history before starting Lariam therapy. If you have any history of mental or mood disorders, liver disease, heart problems, and seizures, talk to your doctor.
Sometimes, Lariam may cause dizziness or loss of balance. This problem may get severe if you consume alcohol or marijuana. It is advisable not to do any work that requires mental alertness, like driving a vehicle or operating any machinery while you are on taking Lariam.
Always tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including any that you have bought from a pharmacy or supermarket. Many medicines get affected by Lariam or may affect how well Lariam can works.
You may need to adjust the dose of medicines, so discuss with your doctor. Your doctor will advise you to correct the dose accordingly.
Inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following medicines
Quinidine (Medicine for heart problem)
Above mentioned medicines must not be taken with Lariam or after Lariam has been taken, as it may cause serious heart problems.
Other medicines that interfere with Lariam are:
Rifampicin (Antitubercular antibiotic)
Valproic acid, carbamazepine, phenobarbital and phenytoin (Antiepileptic)
Medicines used to treat high blood pressure (e.g., Betablockers)
Medications used to treat depression and other mental disorders
Live vaccines- Do not take typhoid vaccine when you are on Lariam therapy. Vaccination with ‘live’ vaccines should be completed at least three days before you take the first dose of Lariam.
Lariam and Malarone are different medicines. However, the purpose of both the products is the same. Both the products are used to prevent malaria or treat malaria, but they contain different active ingredients.
Lariam tablets contain mefloquine 250 mg and Malarone tablets contain Atovaquone 250 mg and proguanil hydrochloride 100 mg.
If you are pregnant, you should avoid visiting malaria-resistant places because you are at higher risk of developing severe malaria. Malaria in pregnancy increases the risk of miscarriage and problems during delivery like stillbirth, maternal and neonatal death. If you cannot avoid travel, then better take effective preventive actions to prevent mosquito bites. Prevention of disease is better than curing it while you are pregnant.
The safety of mefloquine in pregnancy is not completely known. Some studies have shown that mefloquine can be used in pregnancy (including use in the first trimester) if pregnant women have to travel to chloroquine-resistant areas, where the risk of getting malaria is higher than the risk arising due to mefloquine use. You should always get medical advice from your doctor.
If you are breastfeeding, take advice from your doctor before travelling to a malaria-risk region. Mefloquine passes into breast milk in minimal amounts. So, your baby will get mefloquine. But it will be in minimal quantities to cause any risk. However, you need to be careful with your baby because mefloquine in milk will not protect your baby from getting malaria. Always ask your doctor for more information and advice.
If you need to travel to a malaria-risk area with your baby, the baby will also need preventive medicine. Discuss with your paediatrician and travel with care to avoid getting infected.
Lariam tablets should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light. Keep the medicine out of the reach of children. Do not store Lariam in a bathroom or near a sink. Please do not leave it in the car or on window sills. Heat and dampness can destroy medicines.
You can buy Lariam 250 mg tablets online. Buy Lariam online from a trusted online pharmacy, MedsNow, with proper medical online consultation with our experienced doctors and pharmacists. Alternatively, you can procure an independent prescription as well. The medication will be delivered conveniently to your doorstep. It is good to have online consultation because it will ensure that Lariam is the correct medicine for your medical problem.
Is Larium suitable for everyone?
Lariam is suitable for everyone from the age of 3 months onwards. It is not suitable for babies with an age of less than three months. Lariam is not ideal if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
It is also not suitable if you are taking some other medicines like Halofantrine, Ketoconazole, Quinine, Quinidine, Chloroquine, Rifampicin, Valproic acid, Carbamazepine, Phenobarbital, Phenytoin, medication for blood pressure, medication for depression and other mental disorders, antihistamines, antidiabetic drugs, and blood-thinning medicines. Always consult your doctor or pharmacist before taking Lariam.
Does immunity to malaria reduce overtime?
Yes. Clinical immunity to malaria develops after exposure to parasites and is lost in 3-5 years without re-exposure. When you develop clinical immunity, you are only immune to severe symptoms. If re-exposure occurs, clinical immunity will make the disease nearly or completely asymptomatic.
Is Lariam a hydroxychloroquine?
No. Lariam is a medicine to prevent or treat malaria. Hydroxychloroquine is prescribed to treat rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and other skin conditions which get severe on exposure to sunlight.
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