Mebendazole belongs to the class of medications called anthelminthics. It is used to treat infections of several types of parasitic worms that live in the digestive system. These parasites include pinworms, roundworms, whipworms, and hookworms. Mebendazole has also been used to treat threadworms and large tapeworms. These parasitic infections are most common in the rural and developing regions of tropical and sub-tropical areas around the world.
Mebendazole is believed to work by preventing the worms from absorbing sugars, and by doing so, prevents the parasite from getting the energy needed for survival. Gradually, the worms die off, getting rid of the infection.
Each faintly orange, flat-faced, round tablet inscribed with "JANSSEN" on one side and "Me/100" (scored) on the other side contains 100 mg of mebendazole. Nonmedicinal ingredients: microcrystalline cellulose, sodium starch glycolate, talc, corn starch, saccharin sodium, magnesium stearate, cotton seed oil hydrogenated, orange flavour, colloidal anhydrous silica, sodium lauryl sulphate, and FD&C Yellow No. 6 (orange yellow S).
The dose of mebendazole depends on the type of worm you are treating.
To treat pinworms, adults and children greater than 2 years old should take 1 tablet on the first day, then 1 tablet 2 weeks later and a third tablet 4 weeks after the first tablet. The first dose will get rid of the worms, but not the eggs that the worm may have left behind. The second dose will get rid of the second batch of worms that may have hatched from the eggs. The final dose ensures that all the worms are gone.
To treat other types of infestations, 100 mg (1 tablet) of mebendazole should be taken twice a day for 3 days. If symptoms remain after 3 weeks, your doctor may suggest a second treatment.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
Mebendazole may be taken with food or on an empty stomach. Tablets may be crushed or chewed if necessary to make it easier to take the medication.
It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.
Do not take this medication if you are allergic to mebendazole or any ingredients of the medication.
Do not give this medication to infants under 1 year of age.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Infection: There have been reports of decreases in the number of cells that fight infection in the body (white blood cells) in people taking mebendazole. Tell your doctor immediately if you notice more frequent signs of infections, such as fever or chills, severe diarrhea, shortness of breath, prolonged dizziness, headache, stiff neck, weight loss, or listlessness.
Pregnancy: The safety and effectiveness of using this medication during pregnancy is not known. Mebendazole should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.
Breast-feeding: This medication passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking this medication, it may affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.
Children: The safety and effectiveness of using this medication have not been established for children less than 2 years old. Mebendazole may be considered for children 1 to 2 years old if the benefits outweigh the potential risks to the child.
There may be an interaction between mebendazole and any of the following:
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