Pyrantel

By Medically reviewed by hellodoktor

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

Uses

What is Pyrantel used for?

Pyrantel is used to treat intestinal worm infections such as pinworm, roundworm, and hookworm. Pyrantel belongs to a class of drugs known as anthelmintics. It works by making the worms unable to move (paralyzed) so that the body can remove them naturally in the stool.

This medication may be used to self-treat pinworm infections. For other types of worm infections (such as roundworm, hookworm), use this product only as directed by your doctor. Do not use this medication in children younger than 2 years unless directed by the doctor.

How should I take Pyrantel?

If you are taking the over-the-counter product, read all directions on the product package before taking this medication. Be sure you understand how to identify pinworms, understand the symptoms of pinworm infections, and how to prevent becoming infected again. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Shake the medication well before using. Take this medication by mouth with or without food or as directed by your doctor.

Take this medication by mouth with or without food, usually once as a single dose or as directed by your doctor. This medication may be taken with milk or fruit juice. It is not necessary to take a laxative with this medication.

Dosage is based on your weight, type of infection, and response to treatment. Do not take more than a total of 1 gram in a single dose. If you are self-treating for pinworms, take the medication once only. Do not repeat the dose without talking with your doctor first. Depending on the type of worm infection you have, your doctor may direct you to take the medication only once or for several days. Your doctor may also direct you to repeat the dose in 2 weeks.

If you continue to see worms in your stool or if symptoms persist or worsen, or if you think you may have a different type of worm infection or a serious medical problem, seek immediate medical attention.

How do I store Pyrantel?

Pyrantel is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Pyrantel in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Pyrantel 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 Pyrantel 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.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using Pyrantel?

Before taking pyrantel, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: liver disease, severe lack of nutrition (malnutrition), anemia.

This drug may rarely make you drowsy or dizzy. Alcohol or marijuana can make you more dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana.

During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. If you are pregnant, do not use this medication to treat yourself without first consulting your doctor.

It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breast-feeding?

There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using this Pyrantel during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Pyrantel. Pyrantel is pregnancy risk category N 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

Side effects

What side effects can occur from Pyrantel?

Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach/abdominal cramps, headache, drowsiness, dizziness, trouble sleeping, or loss of appetite may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

If your doctor has directed you to use this medication, remember that he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

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.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with Pyrantel?

Pyrantel 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, nonprescription 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.

Does food or alcohol interact with Pyrantel?

Pyrantel 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.

What health conditions may interact with Pyrantel?

Pyrantel 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.

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using this Pyrantel.

What is the dose of Pyrantel for an adult?

Usual Adult Dose for Enterobiasis

11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once. Repeat dose in 2 weeks.

Usual Adult Dose for Pinworm Infection (Enterobius vermicularis)

11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once. Repeat dose in 2 weeks.

Usual Adult Dose for Hookworm Infection (Necator or Ancylostoma)

11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally daily for 3 days.

Usual Adult Dose for Ascariasis

11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once.

Usual Adult Dose for Trichostrongylosis

11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once.

Usual Adult Dose for Moniliformis Infection

11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once. Repeat dose twice at 2 weeks intervals.

Liver Dose Adjustments

Pyrantel is contraindicated in patients with hepatic disease.

Dose Adjustments

In the treatment of ascariasis, pyrantel may be used only if it has been determined that the worm load will not worsen obstruction.

Precautions

Pyrantel is contraindicated in patients with hepatic disease.

When one individual in a household has pinworms, the entire household should be treated unless otherwise advised. Pinworm infections are easily transmitted to others in the same household.

Pyrantel should be used with caution in patients with severe malnutrition or anemia. Supportive therapy is recommended for anemic, dehydrated, or malnourished patients prior to administration of the drug.

Other medications are known to antagonize the anthelmintic effect of pyrantel. Patients should be advised to consult with their physician before initiating any drug therapy while receiving pyrantel.

Other Comments

The dose should be taken as a single oral dose. It may be taken alone or with milk or fruit juice.

Pyrantel pamoate 2.9 g is approximately equivalent to 1 g of pyrantel (base).

What is the dose of Pyrantel for a child?

Usual Pediatric Dose for Enterobiasis

>=2 years: 11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) once. Repeat dose in 2 weeks.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Pinworm Infection (Enterobius vermicularis)

>=2 years: 11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) once. Repeat dose in 2 weeks.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Hookworm Infection (Necator or Ancylostoma)

>=2 years: 11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally daily for 3 days.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Ascariasis

>=2 years: 11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Trichostrongylosis

>=2 years: 11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Moniliformis Infection

>=2 years: 11 mg/kg base (maximum 1 g) orally once. Repeat dose twice at 2 weeks intervals.

How is Pyrantel available?

Pyrantel is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Oral suspension,
  • Oral tablet,
  • Compounding powder.

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 Pyrantel, 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: April 21, 2018 | Last Modified: September 12, 2019

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