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What is Hydroxychloroquine?
Hydroxychloroquine, also available as Plaquenil, is quinoline medicine. It is a medication for malaria treatment and prevention in areas where malaria stays sensitive to its effects. You can buy hydroxychloroquine online from a trusted online pharmacy if unavailable at your nearest medical store.
Hydroxychloroquine is not effective against all malaria strains. Malaria is common in areas such as South America, Africa, and Southern Asia. Buy hydroxychloroquine online before visiting any of these areas.
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How to take Hydroxychloroquine?
Take hydroxychloroquine precisely as per the doctor’s prescription. Read carefully and follow all the directions on the medication guides or instruction sheets.
Take hydroxychloroquine with a glass of milk or with a meal unless your doctor tells you otherwise.
Usually, one should take hydroxychloroquine daily if you are using it to treat lupus or arthritis.
For malaria prevention: The usual intake of malaria is one time a week on the same day each week. Start taking it two weeks before entering a malaria-struck area. Keep taking hydroxychloroquine during the stay and for at least four weeks after you leave the site.
Usually, doctors recommend it as one high dosage followed by two smaller doses during the next two days in a row for malaria treatment.
Use hydroxychloroquine for the full prescribed length of time, even if there is a quick improvement in your symptoms.
Check with your doctor if you have exposure to malaria or fever or other illness symptoms during or after a stay in a site where malaria is common.
Use mosquito netting around your sleeping area, proper clothing, and insect repellants to prevent further mosquito bites that could cause malaria.
No treatment is 100% effective in preventing or treating all malaria types. Check with your medical healthcare provider if you have diarrhea, fever, or vomiting during the treatment.
You may require frequent medical tests and vision exams while using hydroxychloroquine.
Store hydroxychloroquine away from heat, light, and moisture at room temperature.
What to know before taking Hydroxychloroquine?
You should avoid taking hydroxychloroquine if you are allergic to it or chloroquine.
High dosage or long-term use of this medicine may cause irreversible damage to your retina (the vision-producing membrane layer inside your eyes). It could progress into permanent vision problems. The retinal damage risk is higher in people with pre-existing kidney disease, eye problems, or people who also use tamoxifen.
To ensure hydroxychloroquine is safe for you, tell the doctor if you have ever had:
- An allergy to quinine;
- Kidney or liver disease;
- A stomach disorder;
- Heart rhythm disorder (like long QT syndrome), heart disease;
- Porphyria (a genetic enzyme disorder causing symptoms affecting the nervous system or the skin);
- Damage to your retina or change in vision caused by an anti-malaria medication; or
- Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase G6PD deficiency (a genetic enzyme deficiency)
Your doctor must know about your pregnancy or your plan to conceive. A pregnant woman is more likely to face this disease’s adverse effects; malaria can cause severe illness or death in a pregnant woman. Malaria during pregnancy may cause an increment in the risk of premature delivery, miscarriage, stillbirth, and low birth weight.
It is still a question whether hydroxychloroquine will harm an unborn baby or not. Avoid traveling to areas where malaria is common (South America, Africa, and Southern Asia) during your pregnancy.
It may not be safe to breastfeeding a nursing baby while taking hydroxychloroquine. Your doctor will tell you about the risks.
There is no approval of taking hydroxychloroquine to treat rheumatoid arthritis or lupus in anyone younger than 18 years old.
What are the benefits of using Hydroxychloroquine?
Hydroxychloroquine proved beneficial in treating and preventing malaria, a disease spread by parasites that enter the body through a mosquito bite.
Hydroxychloroquine also helps treat symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and discoid or systemic lupus erythematosus.
It is not effective against all malaria strains or against malaria at sites where the infection has been chloroquine (a similar drug) resistant.
Hydroxychloroquine is not under the recommendation for use to treat coronavirus infection (COVID-19) unless you have enrollment in a study. Your doctor will help you to know about the risks and benefits.
What are the side effects of Hydroxychloroquine?
Go for emergency medical help if you have allergic reactions due to the use of hydroxychloroquine. An allergic reaction sign includes trouble breathing, hives, swelling of your face, throat, lips, or throat, or a severe skin reaction including sore throat, fever, skin pain, burning in your eyes, purple or red skin rash that spreads, causing blistering and peeling.
Instantly check with your doctor if you have:
- Serious heart problem: fluttering in your chest, fast or pounding heartbeats, sudden dizziness, and shortness of breath;
- Yellowing of your eyes;
- Unusual mood swings;
- Trouble hearing, ringing in your ears;
- Underactive reflexes, loss of coordination, severe muscle weakness;
- Low blood cell counts- fever, tiredness, chills, mouth sores, unusual bleeding, easy bruising, cold hands and feet, pale skin, feeling lightheaded or short of breath;
- A severe drug reaction affecting many body parts- fever, skin rash, muscle aches, swollen glands, unusual bruising, severe weakness, or jaundice; or
- Low blood sugar level- hunger, headache, irritability, sweating, fast heart rate, dizziness, and feeling shaky or anxious
Stop using hydroxychloroquine and inform your doctor if you have:
- Blind spots, distorted vision;
- Trouble focusing and reading, blurred vision;
- Hazy or cloudy vision;
- Changes in your color vision;
- Increased sensitivity to light; or
- Seeing halos around lights, seeing light streaks or flashes
Common side effects of hydroxychloroquine may include:
- Vomiting, nausea, stomach pain;
- Hair loss;
- Skin rash or itching;
- Dizziness, headache;
- Feeling irritable or nervous; or
- Weight loss, loss of appetite
It is not a complete list of side effects, and others may occur. Take medical advice regarding side effects. Report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
How does Hydroxychloroquine work?
Hydroxychloroquine is an antimalarial drug. It helps treat malaria by killing the disease-causing parasites.
The working of hydroxychloroquine to treat rheumatoid arthritis or lupus erythematosus is not fully understood. However, medical researchers believe that this medicine affects your immune system’s working, which may benefit against lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis cases.
What to avoid while using Hydroxychloroquine?
Hydroxychloroquine may cause impair your reactions and cause blurred vision. Avoid driving a vehicle or performing hazardous activities until you know this medicine’s effect on you.
Avoid taking Kaopectate (kaolin-pectate) or antacid within four hours before or after you take hydroxychloroquine.