Hydroxychloroquine 200mg is used to treat and prevent malaria and also a “Trial treatment” for COVID-19 cases.
How do I take this medicine?
Take Hydroxychloroquine exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
If you are taking Hydroxychloroquine 200mg for lupus or RA, you may need to take it for some time before the full benefits can be felt. Continue to take it even when you feel better.
Do not skip any doses. Do not stop taking Hydroxychloroquine 200mg unless advised by your doctor to do so.
If you are taking Hydroxychloroquine for the treatment or prevention of malaria, take it at regular intervals and complete the prescribed course unless otherwise directed. Do not skip any doses.
Take Hydroxychloroquine 200mg together with food or immediately after a meal. You may also take it with milk. Try to take it at the same time each day.
Do not give Hydroxychloroquine to children unless instructed by the doctor.
What should I do if I have forgotten to take this medicine?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances. If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
When should I not use this medicine?
Alert your doctor if you ever had an allergic reaction (breathlessness, rashes, swollen eyes) or problems with your eyesight after taking similar medicines such as chloroquine or primaquine.
Alert your doctor if you have eye, liver or kidney problems, alcoholism, psoriasis (a skin disease resulting in a itchy rash), porphyria (a disease of the blood pigments) or an inherited condition known as G6PD (glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase) deficiency.
Alert your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Avoid pregnancy while being treated with Hydroxychloroquine. Do not breastfeed while being treated with Hydroxychloroquine.
What should I take note of while taking this medicine?
If you are taking Hydroxychloroquine for a long period of time, you may need to have regular blood and eye tests to monitor your body’s response to the medicine. Eye tests should be done once a year. Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have blood tests done.
If you are taking Hydroxychloroquine for the prevention of malaria, remember that Hydroxychloroquine only reduces the risk of getting malaria. Hydroxychloroquine does not totally prevent malaria.
Therefore, in addition to taking Hydroxychloroquine , you must also take preventive measures to avoid mosquito bites. Use an effective insect repellent, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants to reduce exposure and avoid going out between dusk to dawn. Effective insect repellents should contain at least 20-33% diethyltoluamide (DEET).
The symptoms of malaria are fever, chills, headache, muscle pain and a flu-like illness.
Consult a doctor immediately if you experience these symptoms during travel, and anytime within 1 year after leaving the area, especially within 3 months of your return.
If you suspect that you have malaria, it is very important to seek treatment as soon as possible. Do not delay treatment.
What side effects could I experience?
Hydroxychloroquine may cause stomach discomfort, nausea, loss of appetite, skin or hair discolouration, headache and tiredness.
Hydroxychloroquine may also cause dizziness. If you feel dizzy, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert.
Less commonly, Hydroxychloroquine may cause some side effects that need medical attention. Alert your doctor quickly if you develop any of these symptoms:
– problems with your eyesight
– hearing problems
– muscle weakness
Can I take this with other medicines?
Alert your doctor if you are taking digoxin, cimetidine or other medicines to treat lupus or RA.
Always inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Are there any restrictions on the type of food I can take?
How should I store this medicine?
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.