Albendazole (brand name: Albenza) is a drug known for its anthelmintic properties; an anti-worm medication. Albendazole helps destroy different types of larvae when in the body –larvae are worm-like. Albendazole would also prevent the worms from multiplying when in the body.
Albendazole is chemically composed of the active ingredient, methyl 5 – (propythio) – 2 – benzimidazole carbamate. They also include other inactive constituents like:
- Carnauba wax;
- Lactose monohydrate;
- Magnesium stearate;
- Microcrystalline cellulose;
- Sodium lauryl sulfate;
- Sodium saccharin;
- Sodium starch glycolate;
Albendazole is commonly known as deworming medicine. Albendazole can also be used as an antibiotic in some cases. Albendazole cannot be of use in the treatment of a viral infection. Albendazole aids in the treatment of infections like:
- Hydatid disease;
- Cutaneous Larva Migrans;
- Pinworm Infection (Enterobius vermicularis);
- Visceral Larva Migrans;
- Whipworm Infection (Trichuris trichiura);
Mode of Indication, Dosage, Duration of Treatment
The dosage of Albendazole depends on your prescription label. But do not take the drug in a larger or smaller quantity than required. Always eat before taking medicine to dampen the side effects. For younger children who cannot swallow the Albendazole tablet, crush the required Dose of Albendazole with a full cup of water.
Inform the doctor in case of any change in body weight. The body weight contributes to the prescription the doctor is going to prescribe of the Albendazole. For example, an individual treating Hydatid disease and weighing 60 kg or more he/she would take 400 mg of Albendazole two times a day with meals for a 28-day cycle. But if the individual is weight less than 60 kg, he/she would take 15 mg/kg/day, and a maximum of 800 mg per day. The same applies to the treatment of Neurocysticercosis.
When taking Albendazole for the treatment of any worm infection, precautions have to be in place. Before or during the period of administering Albendazole, the following precautions should be in place:
- Monitor the blood count every day for the period of consuming Albendazole. In the case study of the treatment of Hydatid disease, the blood count is observed during the first 28 days and also during the last two weeks. This precaution should also be in place in whatever case it may be.
- Ensure to monitor the patient liver enzymes (transaminases). In the case study of the treatment of Neurocysticercosis, monitor the transaminases during the first 28 days and during the last two weeks of administering Albenza.
- Also, obtain a pregnancy test result in women to be sure. Albenza comes with adverse effect in pregnant women.
Some common side effects associated with Albendazole includes:
- Fever Chills;
- Sore throat;
- Stomach pains;
- Swollen gums;
- Trouble swallowing;
- Dark urine;
- Lose of hair;
- Spinning sensation.
When you miss a dose of Albendazole, take the treatment when you remember. But you should skip the missed dose if the time you remember is too late. Perhaps the time you recall you skipped a dose is very close to the time you are to take a second dose. You should not take both the missed dose and the current dose; instead, you should skip the missed dose and go for just the current dose. Do not take extra Dose of Albendazole!
In case of an overdose, call for an emergency. You can also seek the attention of the poison helpline too.
Albendazole is contra-indicated for people who are hypersensitive to the active ingredient methyl 5 – (propythio) – 2 – benzimidazole carbamate. Or people who are sensitive to the class of compound benzimidazole carbamate.
Interaction with Other Drugs
Consuming Albendazole with other drugs could cause reactions. Some conventional medicines that could react with Albendazole include:
- Herbal products;
- Biltricide (Praziquantel).