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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Fansidar

Generic Name: pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine (Pronunciation: PIR i METH a meen and SUL fa DOX een)

What is pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine (Fansidar)?

Pyrimethamine is an antiparasitic drug. It prevents the growth and reproduction of parasites.

Sulfadoxine is a sulfa drug that fights bacteria in the body.

The combination of pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine is used to treat malaria, a disease caused by parasites. Parasites that cause malaria typically enter the body through the bite of a mosquito. Malaria is common in areas such as Africa, South America, and Southern Asia.

Pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine is usually given when other anti-malaria medications may not be as effective in treatment or prevention.

Pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Fansidar

round, white, imprinted with FANSIDAR ROCHE

What are the possible side effects of pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine (Fansidar)?

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.

Stop using pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild;
  • a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash;
  • pale skin, easy bruising or bleeding;
  • feeling tired, weak, or dizzy;
  • hallucinations, seizure (convulsions);
  • urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
  • fever, chills, sore throat, swollen tongue, joint pain, cough, feeling short of breath.

Less serious side effects may include:

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine (Fansidar)?

Do not use this medication if you have ever had a serious allergic reaction to pyrimethamine or sulfadoxine. Stop taking the medicine and call your doctor at once if you have any signs of skin rash, no matter how mild.

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to sulfa drugs, or if you have liver or kidney disease (if using the medication long-term), a blood cell disorder (such as anemia), if you are in late pregnancy, or if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Take the pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine tablet after a meal, with plenty of water or other fluid. Swallow the tablet whole, do not break or chew it.

Drink plenty of water to keep your kidneys working and prevent kidney stones while taking this medication.

You should not take pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine for longer than 2 years without a doctor's advice.

In addition to taking pyrimethamine and sulfadoxine, use protective clothing, insect repellents, and mosquito netting around your bed to further prevent mosquito bites that could cause malaria.

No medication is 100% effective in treating or preventing malaria. For best results, keep using the medication as directed. Talk with your doctor if you have fever, vomiting, or diarrhea during your treatment.



Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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