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Description

What is Symmetrel used for?

The common cold, including chest and head colds, seasonal flu, are all caused by viruses. Amantadine is used to prevent or treat a certain type of flu.  If you have been infected by the flu this medication may help ease your symptoms so being less severe and shorten the time it will take to become well again.

In taking this medication if you have been or will be exposed to the flu, it may help prevent you from getting the flu. This medication is an antiviral that is believed to work by stopping growth of the flu virus. Keep in mind however that this medication is not a vaccine.

Amantadine is also used to treat Parkinson's disease, as well as side effects caused by drugs (e.g., drug-induced extrapyramidal symptoms), chemicals, other medical conditions. In these cases, this medication may help to improve your range of motion and ability to exercise. For the treatment of these conditions, amantadine is believed to work by restoring the balance of natural chemicals (neurotransmitters) in the brain.

Directions

Take this medication by mouth, with or without food, and usually only once or twice a day. Or as directed by your doctor.  If you are taking this medication twice a day and have trouble sleeping after taking it, then take the second dose several hours before bedtime.

Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. This medication works best when the amount of medicine in your body is kept at a constant level. Therefore, take this medication at evenly spaced intervals throughout the day and night.

Cautions

Before taking this medication, it is best to advise your doctor if you are allergic to Amantadine; or to any other medications or allergies in general. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems.

You should also let your doctor know of all of your medical history. Especially if you have ever dealt with any of these experiences in the past; swelling of arms/legs (peripheral edema), heart problems (e.g., congestive heart failure), blood pressure problems (e.g., dizziness when standing), kidney disease, liver disease, mental/mood conditions (e.g., depression, psychosis), seizures, a certain skin condition (eczematoid dermatitis).

If you are taking this medication for Parkinson's disease, be careful not to overdo physical activity as your condition improves because this may increase your risk of falls. Consult your doctor about a plan to gradually increase your physical activity as symptoms improve.

Side Effects

While minor, some of these side effects may occur. They are as follows; Blurred vision, nausea, stomach upset, drowsiness, dizziness, headache, dry mouth, constipation, nervousness, or trouble sleeping may occur. However if any of these persist or worsen, it’s best to speak with your doctor right away.

Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: purplish-red blotchy spots on the skin, swelling of the ankles/feet, difficulty urinating, vision changes.

Tell your doctor right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: shortness of breath, mental/mood changes (such as depression, suicidal thoughts/attempts), muscle stiffness, uncontrolled muscle movements, unusual sweating, fast heartbeat, unexplained fever, unusual strong urges (such as increased gambling, increased sexual urges), seizures.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction may include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

FAQs

What happens if I suddenly stop taking this medication?

There may be a relapse in symptoms as well as side effects. You should speak your doctor before stop taking this medication.

 

 What is the best dosage to take?

The diagnosis with your doctor will be able to determine the best dosage for your treatment. Work with your doctor closely for dosage and dosing schedules.

 

 What happens if I miss a dose?

You should take the missed dose as soon you realize you have forgotten. If the forgotten dose is closer to your next scheduled dose, take the next schedule dose to avoid overlapping in dose.

 

 What is the best way to store this medication?

This medication is stored at room temperature, and should be kept away from children and pets. Do not throw away this medication in the wastebasket. If you are uncertain how to dispose of this medication speak with your pharmacist for help in safely disposing of this medication.