Amantadine (Symmetrel) – Side Effects, Dosage, Interactions


The Amantadine brand name drug is a common form of Symmetrel, which is used to treat and prevent respiratory infection due to influenza A virus.

It can also treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, such as hardness and movement, and conditions that are similar to Parkinson’s disease.

In the beginning, amantadine was used to prevent influenza A during the flu season. Later, doctors discovered their benefits for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease symptoms.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this drug should not be used for the treatment or prevention of influenza A, because in the United States and Canada a stress of this virus is drug-resistant.

Amantadine is an antiviral drug that is believed to work to stop the development of a virus. It helps to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease by increasing the effect of dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter in the brain; People with Parkinson’s disease usually have low levels of dopamine.

Amantadine can be taken from the mouth, comes in a capsule and liquid form.

Amantadine Warning

Amantadine should not be used as a substitute for flu vaccine and should not be used with the flu vaccine through the nose, because there may be serious interactions.

This drug can cause some people to display irritation, excitement, or other abnormal behavior. It can also cause suicidal thoughts or trends in some patients.

Before taking Amantadine, if you have or you have, ask your doctor:

•  Epilepsy or other types of seizures
•  Heart disease
•  Heart failure
•  Kidney disease
•  Liver disease
•  Low blood pressure
•  Rotating skin beat
•  Mental illness
•  Untreated closed-angle glaucoma (a type of eye disease)

You should not take amantadine in excess of your doctor. Do not stop this medicine without talking to your doctor for the first time.

In Parkinson’s disease patients, the effect of amantadine can not be seen for several weeks. If this drug causes insomnia, take your dose for several hours before sleeping.

Pregnancy and Amantadine

There is no well-controlled study to evaluate the safety of amantadine in pregnancy, so risk and benefits should be taken into account to determine whether this drug should be used in pregnant women or not.

Amantadine is emitted in human breast milk in low concentration. The manufacturer recommends that this medicine should be carefully used in nursing mothers.

Amantadine Side Effects

Amantadine’s common side effects:

If you experience any of the following common side effects, ask your doctor.

•  Blurred vision
•  Lightheadedness
•  Insomnia
•  Dizziness
•  It seems as if you are unconscious

Amantadine’s severe Side Effects:

If you experience any of the following severe side effects, contact your doctor immediately.

•  Swelling of hands, feet or legs
•  Shortness of breath
•  Depression or anxiety
•  Difficulty in urination
•  Red spots

Amantadine Interaction

Amantadine and Alcohol

Drinking alcoholic beverages during taking amantadine can cause issues such as circulation problems, dizziness, lightness, inclination, or confusion. Do not drink alcohol when you are taking this medicine.

Amantadine and drug interactions

Tell your doctor about all the prescriptions, non-prescription, illegal, recreational, herbal, nutritional or dietary medicines that you are taking, especially:

•  Benztropine (cogentin)
•  Hydrochlorothiazide with triamterene (Maxzide, Dyazide)
•  Medicines for depression
•  Other medicines for Parkinson’s disease
•  Medicines for stomach or intestinal spam
•  Stimulant
• Trihexyphenidyl (Artane)
•  Vitamins

Amantadine and other interactions

Amantadine can cause blurred vision. Be careful while running or performing activities requiring caution.

Amantadine Dose

During taking Amantadine, you should follow the guidelines on your doctor’s order or pamphlet label. The average dose of this drug for oral dose forms (capsules, syrup, and tablet) is as follows:

For the treatment or prevention of flu:

Adults and teens: 200 mg (mg) or four spoons, as a dose in one day.
Older adults: 100 mg, once a day as a dose.
Children between 9 and 12 years: 100 mg or two teaspoons, twice a day.
Children between 1 to 9 years of age: Dosage is based on body weight and should be determined by your doctor. Normal dose per kg body weight per kg (kg) 4.4 to 8.8 mg. Dosage is evenly divided and given twice daily. However, the dosage is usually not more than 150 milligrams per day.
Children up to 1 year: Use and dose should be determined by your doctor.

To treat the condition of Parkinson’s disease or movement:

Adult: 100 mg, twice a day Your doctor may adjust your dose.
Aged adult: Once a day, start with 100 mg as a dose. Your doctor may adjust your dose.
Children: Use and dosage should be determined by the doctor.

Amantadine can cause a troubled stomach. To avoid this side effect, you should take this medicine from food or milk.

Amantadine Overdose

If you suspect excessive amount then immediately contact a poison control center or emergency room. You can come in contact at a Poison Control Center (800) 222-1222.

Amantadine’s Missed Dose

If you remember the Amantadine dose, remember it as soon as you can. If this is the time for the next dose, leave the missed dose andcontinue on your regular medication program. Do not “double up” to prepare for the missed one.

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