Generic Name: Albendazole Brand Name(s): Generics only. No brands available.

Know the basics

What is albendazole used for?

Albedazole is used to treat certain tapeworm infections (e.g., neurocysticercosis). Albedazole belongs to class called anthelmintic.

Other uses: this section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your healthcare professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.

This drug may also be used to treat other types of worm infections.

How should I take albendazole?

Take this medication by mouth with meals, usually 1 to 2 times daily or as directed by your doctor. If you or your child have trouble swallowing tablets, you may crush or chew your dose and take it with water.

Dosage is based on your weight, medical condition, and response to treatment. Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Some conditions may require you to stop the medication for 2 weeks and then restart the medication. If that is the case, it may be helpful to mark the calendar with a reminder of when you need to restart the medication.

Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time(s) each 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.

Other medications (e.g., corticosteroids, anti-seizure medications) may also be prescribed for your current condition. Take those medications exactly as prescribed by your doctor.

Avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while using this medication unless your doctor or pharmacist says you may do so safely. Grapefruit can increase the chance of side effects with this medicine. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.

How do I store albendazole?

Albendazole is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store albendazole in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of albendazole that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush albendazole down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Know the precautions & warnings

What should I know before using albendazole?

Before taking albendazole:

  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to albendazole, mebendazole, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in albendazole tablets. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.
  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention theophylline. Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects.
  • Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had liver disease.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, could be pregnant, or plan to become pregnant. You should not begin your treatment with albendazole until you have taken a pregnancy test with negative results. You should not become pregnant while you are taking albendazole and for at least one month after finishing your treatment. Talk to your doctor about birth control methods that you can use during your treatment. If you become pregnant while taking albendazole, call your doctor immediately. Albendazole may harm the fetus.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding.
  • If you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking albendazole.
  • If you are taking albendazole to treat neurocysticercosis, your doctor will probably tell you to take certain medications to prevent damage to the nervous system during your treatment. Call your doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms: seizures, headache, vomiting,extreme tiredness, or changes in behavior.

Is it safe to take albendazole during pregnancy or breast-feeding?

There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using this medication during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking this medication. This medication is pregnancy risk category C according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:

  • A=No risk,
  • B=No risk in some studies,
  • C=There may be some risk,
  • D=Positive evidence of risk,
  • X=Contraindicated,
  • N=Unknown.

Know the side effects

What are the side effects of albendazole?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • Easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness;
  • Fever, sore throat, and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash;
  • Fever with chills, body aches, or flu-like symptoms.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • Stomach pain;
  • Nausea, vomiting;
  • Headache, dizziness;
  • Temporary hair loss.

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Know the interactions

What drugs may interact with albendazole?

Medication may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, non-prescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor’s approval.

  • Cimetidine, dexamethasone, or praziquantel because they may increase the risk of albendazole’s side effects.
  • Theophylline because the risk of its side effects may be increased by albendazole.

Does food or alcohol interact with albendazole?

Albendazole may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug, especially:

  • Grapefruit Juice.

What health conditions may interact with albendazole?

Albendazole may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have, especially:

  • Cysticercosis involving the eye—Patients who are being treated with albendazole for pork tapeworms of the nervous system (neurocysticercosis) should be examined for lesions in the eye; use of albendazole may increase the chance of side effects involving the eye.
  • Liver disease—Patients with liver disease may have an increased chance of side effects.

Understand the dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult your doctor or pharmacist before using this medication.

What is the dose of albendazole for an adult?

Usual Adult Dose for Echinococcosis

  • Adult: >60 kg: 400 mg orally bid for 28 days; <60 kg: 15 mg/kg orally daily in 2 divided doses. Max dose: 800 mg orally daily. For cystic echinococcosis, up to 3 treatment cycles of 28 days each may be given with 14 treatment-free days in between cycles. For alveolar echinococcosis, treatment cycles of 28 days each with 14 treatment-free days in between. Treatment cycles may need to be continued for mth or yr until complete eradication of parasites.

Usual Adult Dose for Neurocysticercosis

  • Adult: >60 kg: 400 mg orally bid; <60 kg: 15 mg/kg orally daily in 2 divided doses for 8-30 days.

Usual Adult Dose for Enterobiasis

  • Adult: 400 mg orally as a single dose.

Usual Adult Dose for Ascariasis

  • Adult: 400 mg orally as a single dose.

Usual Adult Dose for Hookworm infections

  • Adult: 400 mg orally as a single dose.

Usual Adult Dose for Strongyloidiasis

  • Adult: 400 mg orally once daily or bid for 3 consecutive days, repeated after 3 weak if necessary.

Usual Adult Dose for Giardiasis

  • Adult: 400 mg orally daily for 5 days.

What is the dose of Albendazole for a child?

Usual Pediatric Dose for Enterobiasis

  • Child: above 2 year: 400 mg as a single dose; 1-2 year: 200 mg orally as a single dose for enterobiasis.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Ascariasis

  • Child: above 2 year: 400 mg orally as a single dose; 1-2 year: 200 mg orally as a single dose for enterobiasis.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Hookworm infections

  • Child: above 2 year: 400 mg orally as a single dose; 1-2 year: 200 mg orally as a single dose for enterobiasis.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Giardiasis

  • Child: 400 mg orally daily for 5 days.

How is Albendazole available?

Albendazole is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

Tablet, Oral: 200 mg, 400 mg.

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of albendazole, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Review Date: January 4, 2017 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017

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