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Atovaquone and Proguanil

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Why is this medication prescribed?

Atovaquone and proguanil are used in combination to both treat and prevent certain types of malaria infections in tourists who travel to regions where malaria is prevalent. Malaria is a serious infection that is carried by mosquitoes in some parts of the world and can be fatal. The antimalarial drug class includes atovaquone and proguanil. It functions by eradicating the malaria-causing germs.

How should this medicine be used?

Atovaquone and proguanil are available as a tablet that should be swallowed. If you’re taking atovaquone plus proguanil to prevent malaria, you’ll probably start taking it once a day one or two days before you leave for a destination where the disease is frequent. You’ll also likely keep taking it while you’re there and for seven days after you get back home. You will most likely take atovaquone and proguanil once day for three days straight if you are treating malaria with those medications. Always consume food or a milky beverage while taking atovaquone and proguanil. Take proguanil and atovaquone at roughly the same time each day. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any instructions on your prescription label that you are unsure about following. Proguanil and atovaquone should be taken as prescribed. Never take it in larger or less amounts or more frequently than directed by your doctor.

The tablets can be crushed and combined with condensed milk right before consumption if you have problems swallowing them.

Take another full dose of atovaquone and proguanil if you vomit within 60 minutes of doing so.

Other uses for this medicine

Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details if you believe this drug should be used for something else.

What special precautions should I follow?

Before taking atovaquone and proguanil,

  • If you have any allergies, including to atovaquone, proguanil, other drugs, or any of the substances in atovaquone and proguanil tablets, inform your doctor right away. Request a list of the components from your pharmacist.
  • Inform your doctor and pharmacist about any additional prescription and over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, dietary supplements, and herbal products you are now taking or intend to use. Mention any of the following: tetracycline, warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven), indinivir (Crixivan), metoclopramide (Metozolv, Reglan), rifabutin (Mycobutin), rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, in Rifamate, in Rifater), and any other anticoagulants (also known as “blood thinners”) (Sumycin). Your physician might need to adjust the dosage of your drugs or keep a close eye on you for side effects. Atovaquone and proguanil may also interact with many other drugs, so be sure to let your doctor know about every drug you’re taking, even if it’s not on this list.
  • In case you have kidney illness, let your doctor know. Your doctor could advise against taking proguanil and atovaquone.
  • Inform your doctor if you are expecting, intend to get pregnant, or are nursing a baby. Call your doctor if you become pregnant while taking atovaquone and proguanil.
  • You should be aware that while proguanil and atovaquone lower your risk of contracting malaria, they do not ensure that you won’t. Even if you are not in a region where malaria is prevalent, you should still use a bed net, long sleeves, and long pants to protect yourself from mosquito bites.
  • You should be aware that fever, chills, muscle discomfort, and headaches are some of the early signs of malaria. If you experience any of these signs while taking proguanil and atovaquone to prevent malaria, call your doctor right away. Tell your doctor right away if you believe you may have been exposed to malaria.
  • If you are not close to a doctor or pharmacy or encounter major adverse effects with atovaquone and proguanil and need to stop taking the drug, you should make plans for what to do. You will need to get an additional medication to safeguard against malaria. You will need to leave the region where malaria is prevalent and then obtain another medication to prevent malaria if there are no other treatments available.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

Keep eating normally unless your doctor instructs you otherwise.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If you miss a dosage, take it as soon as you recall. If the next dose is soon due, skip the missed one and carry on with your regular dosing plan. To make up for a missing dose, do not take a second one.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Proguanil and atovaquone both have potential adverse effects. If any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away, let your doctor know right once:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Reduced appetite
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Cough
  • Oral sores

Some adverse effects can be very harmful. Call your doctor right away if any of these symptoms occur to you:

  • Rash
  • Hives
  • Blistered or flaking skin
  • Fever
  • Swelling of the hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs as well as the eyes, face, lips, tongue, and throat
  • Breathing or swallowing challenges
  • Throat constriction or hoarseness
  • Yellow eyes or skin, dark urine, malnutrition, exhaustion, or right upper stomach ache or discomfort

Proguanil and atovaquone may also have other adverse effects. If you experience any strange issues while taking this medicine, contact your doctor right away.

You or your doctor can submit a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting programme online or by phone if you have a serious side event (1-800-332-1088).

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?

Keep this medication tightly closed in the original container and out of the reach of children. Store it away from excessive heat and moisture at room temperature (not in the bathroom).

As many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and are simple for young children to open, it is crucial to keep all medications out of sight and out of reach of children. Always lock safety caps and promptly stash medication up and away from young children where it is out of their sight and reach to prevent poisoning.

Unused prescriptions must be disposed of carefully to prevent pets, kids, and other people from ingesting them. You should not, however, dispose of this medication in the toilet. Instead, utilising a medicine take-back programme is the easiest approach to get rid of your medication. To find out about take-back programmes in your area, speak with your pharmacist or the garbage/recycling department in your city. If you do not have access to a take-back programme, see the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medicines website at for additional information.

In case of emergency/overdose

Call the poison control hotline at 1-800-222-1222 in the event of an overdose. Additionally, information can be found online at Call 911 right once if the person has collapsed, experienced a seizure, is having difficulty breathing, or cannot be roused.

Overdose signs could include the following:

  • Rash
  • Skin or lips with a grey-blue colour
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Loss of breath
  • Vomiting
  • Discomfort in the stomach
  • Hair fall
  • Palms of the hands or the soles of the feet may have dry, cracked skin
  • Scaly sores

What other information should I know?

Keep all of your doctor’s appointments.

No one else should take your medication. Any queries you may have regarding medication refills should be directed to your pharmacist.

You should keep a written record of every medication you take, including any over-the-counter (OTC) items, prescription drugs, and dietary supplements like vitamins and minerals. This list should be brought with you whenever you see a doctor or are admitted to the hospital. You should always have this information with you in case of emergencies.

Brand names

  • Malarone®
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