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Malarone for prevention of malaria

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Malarone for prevention of malaria

This leaflet is about the use of Malarone for the prevention of malaria when travelling to high-risk malaria regions. (This is called malaria prophylaxis.)

Information-Standard-logoThis leaflet has been written specifically for parents and carers about the use of this medicine in children. The information may differ from that provided by the manufacturer. Please read this leaflet carefully. Keep it somewhere safe so that you can read it again.

Start giving malarone 1-2 days before entering the high-risk area. Give it regularly while you are in the high-risk area, and continue to give it for 1 week after leaving that area. Do your best to avoid mosquito bites. Dress your child in long-sleeved tops and trousers. Use insect repellant. Use a mosquito net at night.

Name of drug

Brand name: Malarone®
Malarone tablets contain two medicines: proguanil hydrochloride and atovaquone.

Why is it important for my child to take this medicine?

Malaria is a serious illness. This medicine will reduce the risk of developing malaria if you are visiting an area where there are mosquitoes that carry malaria – described as a high-risk area. It is vital that you do your best to avoid mosquito bites because Malarone does not provide complete protection.

What is Malarone available as?

  • Malarone® Paediatric tablets (contains 25 mg proguanil and 62.5 mg atovaquone)
  • Malarone® tablets (contains 100 mg proguanil and 250 mg atovaquone)

When should I give Malarone?

Malarone is usually given once each day. Give the medicine at about the same time each day so that this becomes part of your child’s daily routine, which will help you to remember.

How much should I give?

Your doctor will work out the amount of Malarone (the dose) that is right for your child. This is usually worked out from their weight. The dose will be shown on the medicine label.

It is important that you follow your doctor’s instructions about how much to give.

How should I give Malarone?

Your child should have a milky drink or some food when they take Malarone. This will help it to be absorbed from the stomach more quickly, and may help to prevent your child feeling sick (nausea).

TabletsTablets should be swallowed with a glass of water, milk or juice. Your child should not chew the tablets. You can crush the tablet and mix it with a small amount of soft food such as yogurt, honey or jam. Make sure your child swallows it all straight away.

When should the medicine start working?

You need to start giving Malarone to your child 1-2 days before going into the high-risk area, to make sure that they are fully protected against malaria. Give it every day while you are in the high-risk area. You must continue to give Malarone for 1 week after you leave the high-risk area.

What if my child is sick (vomits)?

  • If your child is sick less than 1 hour after having a dose of Malarone, give them the same dose again.
  • If your child is sick more than 1 hour after having a dose of Malarone, you do not need to give them another dose. Wait until the next normal dose.

If your child is sick again, seek advice from your GP, pharmacist or hospital. They will decide what to do based on your child’s condition and the specific medicine involved.

What if I forget to give it?

Give your child the missed dose as soon as you remember.

What if I give too much?

It is unlikely that Malarone will cause any harm if you accidentally give your child an extra dose. If you think you may have given your child more than an extra dose of Malarone, contact a doctor for advice. Have the medicine packet with you if you telephone for advice.

Are there any possible side-effects?

We use medicines to make our children better, but sometimes they have other effects that we don’t want (side-effects). Even if your child gets side-effects, they must continue to take Malarone. The risks associated with malaria are far more serious than any side-effects.

  • Your child may feel sick (nausea) or be sick (vomit) after taking Malarone. This may be reduced by taking the Malarone with some food.
  • Your child may have stomach ache, diarrhoea or develop a fever (high temperature).
  • Some children get headaches or have strange dreams.

There may, sometimes, be other side-effects that are not listed above. If you notice anything unusual and are concerned, contact your doctor. You can report any suspected side-effects to a UK safety scheme at http://www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard.

Can other medicines be given at the same time as Malarone?

  • You can give your child medicines that contain paracetamol or ibuprofen, unless your doctor has told you not to.
  • Check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving any other medicines to your child. This includes herbal or complementary medicines.

Is there anything else I need to know about this medicine?

Although Malarone provides good protection against malaria, there is still a risk of infection. It is vital that you take precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Use a mosquito net at night. Use insect repellent and dress your child in long-sleeved tops and trousers in the evening and at night.

  • If your child is ill while in a high-risk area, contact a doctor straight away.

If your child is ill at any time in the 3 months after you return home, contact your doctor straight away. Tell them that you have travelled to a high-risk malaria area.

  • There is a low risk of malaria developing for up to 1 year, so if your child is ill at any point during this time, tell your doctor that you have travelled to a high-risk malaria area.
  • Make sure you have enough medicine for your whole trip.

General advice about medicines

  • Try to give the medicine at about the same time each day, to help you remember.
  • Only give this medicine to your child. Never give it to anyone else.
  • If you think someone else may have taken the medicine by accident, contact a doctor for advice.
  • Make sure that the medicine has not reached the ‘best before’ or ‘use by’ date on the packaging. Give old medicines to your pharmacist to dispose of.

Where should I keep this medicine?

  • Keep the medicine away from heat and direct sunlight. It does not need to be kept in the fridge.
  • Make sure that children cannot see or reach the medicine.
  • Keep the medicine in the container it came in.

Who to contact for more information

Your child’s doctor, pharmacist or nurse will be able to give you more information about Malarone, and other medicines used to protect against malaria.

You can also get useful information from: 
Publication date: 
12/03/2014

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