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Why is this medication prescribed?

Pneumocystis jiroveci [Pneumocystis carinii] pneumonia (PCP; kind of pneumonia most likely to harm people with HIV) is treated in adults and adolescents with atovaquone. Adults and teenagers who are unable to take another preventative medication can also utilise atovaquone to prevent PCP usage. Antiprotozoal agents are a class of drugs that includes atovaquone. It functions by halting the development of certain protozoa that can lead to pneumonia.

How should this medicine be used?

Atovaquone is available as a liquid solution for oral administration. Atovaquone is often taken twice daily with meals for 21 days while treating pneumonia. Atovaquone is typically given once day with a meal when used to prevent pneumonia. Take atovaquone every day at about the same time(s). Ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any instructions on your prescription label that you are unsure about following. Follow the prescription for atovaquone exactly. Never take it in larger or less amounts or more frequently than directed by your doctor.

Before each usage, gently shake the drug-containing bottle if it is in a liquid form if your medication is. To measure the precise amount of liquid for each dose, use a cup or a dose measuring spoon rather than a common household spoon.

If your medication is in a packet, you can either drink it straight from the packet or pour it into a cup or dosage spoon.

Take this medication as directed until the prescription is finished. Even if you are taking the medication to treat pneumonia and you feel better, do not stop taking it early. Atovaquone may not fully treat your illness or provide you with protection from re-infection if you stop taking it too soon or skip doses.

PCP increases your risk of developing more lung infections. These infections cannot be treated with atovaquone. Along with this medication, your doctor might advise you to take other antibiotics.

Other uses for this medicine

Babesiosis is occasionally treated with atovaquone in combination with other drugs (an infectious disease carried by ticks). The dangers of using this drug for your illness should be discussed with your doctor.

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,

  • If you have an allergy to atovaquone, any other drugs, or any of the ingredients in atovaquone suspension, let your doctor and pharmacist know right once. 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. Incorporate any of the following: rifampin or rifabutin (Mycobutin) (Rifadin, Rimactane). Your physician might need to adjust the dosage of your drugs or keep a close eye on you for side effects.
  • If you have or have previously had liver disease or gastrointestinal or intestinal issues, let your doctor know.
  • 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.

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?

There may be adverse consequences from atovaquone. If any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away, let your doctor know right once:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Anxiety
  • Having trouble falling or staying asleep

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

  • Rash
  • Fever
  • Eye, face, lip, tongue, mouth, or throat swelling
  • Hives
  • Breathing or swallowing challenges
  • Throat constriction or hoarseness

Other negative effects of atovaquone are possible. 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). This drug should not be frozen.

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
  • Greyish-blue hue of the skin or lips
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Breathing difficulty

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

  • Mepron®
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