zanamivir

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Relenza, |zanamivir

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zanamivir

Generic Name: zanamivir (za NA mih veer)
Brand Names: Relenza

What is zanamivir?

Zanamivir is an antiviral medication. It blocks the actions of viruses in your body.

Zanamivir is used to treat flu symptoms caused by influenza virus in patients who have had symptoms for less than 2 days. Zanamavir may also be given to prevent influenza in people who may be exposed but do not yet have symptoms. Zanamavir will not treat the common cold.

Zanamivir may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about zanamivir?

Do not use zanamivir without first talking to your doctor if you have asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or any other chronic lung condition. Serious or life-threatening bronchospasm (difficulty breathing) and other effects on the lungs can occur while using zanamavir. Stop using zanamavir and call your doctor at once if you have wheezing or severe breathing problems.

If you have asthma, COPD, or other chronic lung disease, make sure you have a fast-acting inhaled bronchodilator available to treat any serious breathing problems that may occur while using zanamavir. Fast-acting bronchodilators include albuterol (Ventolin, Proventil), bitolterol (Tornalate), metaproterenol (Alupent), and pirbuterol (Maxair). Talk with your doctor about which medicine is best for you.

If you are scheduled to use a bronchodilator at the same time as zanamavir, use the inhaler first.

Use this medication for the entire length of time prescribed by your doctor. Your symptoms may get better before the infection is completely treated. Tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve, or if they get worse. Do not use this medication to treat flu symptoms in a child younger than 7 years old. Children as young as 5 may use the medication to prevent flu symptoms.

Zanamivir should not be used in place of getting a yearly flu shot. The Centers for Disease Control recommends an annual flu shot to help protect you each year from new strains of influenza virus.

Do not use an inhaled nasal flu vaccine (FluMist) within 2 weeks before or 24 hours after using zanamavir. Zanamavir may interfere with the drug action of FluMist, making the vaccine less effective. Follow your doctor"s instructions.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using zanamivir?

Do not use zanamivir without first talking to your doctor if you have asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or any other chronic lung condition. Serious or life-threatening bronchospasm (difficulty breathing) and other effects on the lungs can occur while using zanamavir.

If you have asthma, COPD, or other chronic lung disease, make sure you have a fast-acting inhaled bronchodilator available to treat any serious breathing problems that may occur while using zanamavir. Fast-acting bronchodilators include albuterol (Ventolin, Proventil), bitolterol (Tornalate), metaproterenol (Alupent), and pirbuterol (Maxair). Talk with your doctor about which medicine is best for you.

If you are scheduled to use a bronchodilator at the same time as zanamavir, use the inhaler first.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether zanamivir passes into breast milk. It is also not known whether it will harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not use this medication to treat flu symptoms in a child younger than 7 years old. Children as young as 5 may use the medication to prevent flu symptoms.

How should I use zanamivir?

Use this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not use the medication in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended by your doctor.

Zanamavir is packaged in disk-shaped foil packs that contain 4 blisters of medicine. These disks are placed into a device called a DISKHALER that you will use to inhale the medicine. The device opens and loads a blister of zanamavir each time you use the inhaler. The disk device is not to be used with a spacer. Follow the patient instructions provided with the DISKHALER.

Do not use any other medicines in the DISKHALER. Always put the cover back on the device when not in use.

To treat flu symptoms: Use 2 inhalations every 12 hours for 5 days. Your doctor may tell you to use two doses on the first day of treatment, spaced at least 2 hours apart. On the following days, the doses should be spaced 12 hours apart. Follow your doctor"s instructions.

To prevent flu symptoms: Use 2 inhalations every 24 hours for 10 to 28 days. Follow your doctor"s instructions.

If you have a chronic respiratory disease such as asthma or COPD and you are scheduled to use an inhaled bronchodilator at the same time as zanamivir, use the inhaled bronchodilator before using zanamivir.

Use this medication for the entire length of time prescribed by your doctor. Your symptoms may get better before the infection is completely treated. Tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve, or if they get worse.

Zanamivir should not be used in place of getting a yearly flu shot. The Centers for Disease Control recommends an annual flu shot to help protect you each year from new strains of influenza virus.

Store zanamivir at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Throw away the DISKHALER after your treatment ends.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the medication as soon as you remember. If it is within 2 hours of your next dose, skip the missed dose and use the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

Call your doctor if you miss several doses.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

What should I avoid while using zanamivir?

Do not use an inhaled nasal flu vaccine (FluMist) within 2 weeks before or 24 hours after using zanamavir. Zanamavir may interfere with the drug action of FluMist, making the vaccine less effective. Follow your doctor"s instructions.

Zanamivir side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using zanamavir and call your doctor at once if you have wheezing or severe breathing problems.

Continue using zanamivir and talk to your doctor if you have any of these less serious side effects:

  • headache;

  • dizziness;

  • nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea;

  • infection of your ear, nose, or throat;

  • stuffy or irritated nose; or

  • cough or respiratory symptoms.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect zanamivir?

There may be other drugs that can affect zanamavir. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist has more information about zanamivir written for health professionals that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Zanamivir is available with a prescription under the brand name Relenza in an inhalation formulation. Other brand or generic formulations may also be available. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about this medication, especially if it is new to you.

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ("Multum") is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum"s drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum"s drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 6.02. Revision Date: 8/10/06 1:33:46 PM.




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