Praziquantel is used to treat schistosoma (infection with a type of worm that lives in the bloodstream) and liver fluke (infection with a type of worm that lives in or near the liver). Praziquantel is in a class of medications called anthelmintics. It works by killing the worms.
Praziquantel comes as a tablet to take by mouth with water and a meal. It is usually taken for one day as three doses; each dose spaced 4 to 6 hours apart. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take praziquantel exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Praziquantel tablets are marked with 3 notches so that they can easily be split. If your doctor has told you to take only part of a tablet, use your thumbnail to press down on the correct notch and separate the number of parts needed for your dose.
Swallow the tablets or tablet parts whole as soon as you put them into your mouth. Do not chew them, crush them, or hold them in your mouth. The bitter taste of the tablets may cause you to gag or vomit if you keep the tablets in your mouth before swallowing.
Praziquantel is also sometimes used to treat certain other worm infestations, including tapeworm (a type of worm that may attach to the wall of the intestine or may move to different parts of the body). Talk to your doctor about the risks of using praziquantel to treat your condition.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Before taking praziquantel,
Talk to your doctor about eating grapefruit and drinking grapefruit juice while taking this medicine.
Ask your doctor what you should do if you miss a dose of praziquantel.
Praziquantel may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience the following symptom, call your doctor right away:
Praziquantel may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online ( Web Site ) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA's Safe Disposal of Medicines website ( Web Site) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. Web Site
In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at Web Site. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can't be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Your prescription is probably not refillable. If you still have symptoms of infection after you finish the praziquantel, call your doctor.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.
Selected Revisions: September 15, 2016.