Indications for ALBENZA:
Parenchymal neurocysticercosis from active lesions due to Taenia solium (pork tapeworm). Cystic hydatid disease of the liver, lung, and peritoneum due to Echinococcus granulosus (dog tapeworm).
Adults and Children:
See literature. Take with meals. Neurocysticercosis: Give for 8–30 days. Hydatid: Give for 28-day cycle followed by a 14-day free interval, for a total of 3 cycles. <6yrs: not recommended. ≥6yrs (<60kg): 15mg/kg per day in 2 divided doses; max 800mg/day. ≥6yrs (≥60kg): 400mg twice a day.
Examine for retinal lesions first. Monitor blood and hepatic function at beginning of each 28-day cycle and at least every 2 weeks; discontinue if significant increased liver enzymes or if decreases in blood counts occur. Neurocysticercosis: may need corticosteroids during the 1st week of therapy and anticonvulsants. Pregnancy (Cat.C): obtain (–) pregnancy test first. Avoid pregnancy during or for at least 1 month after stopping; discontinue if pregnancy occurs. Nursing mothers.
Potentiated by dexamethasone, praziquantel, cimetidine. Monitor theophylline.
Abnormal liver function test, abdominal pain, GI upset, headache, dizziness, increased intracranial pressure, meningeal signs, reversible alopecia, fever; rarely: leukopenia, rash, acute renal failure, hematological reactions.