Mestinon is a medication used to treat myasthenia gravis, a chronic autoimmune neuromuscular disorder. It can be used to treat neuromuscular disorders such as myasthenia gravis, Lambert-Eaton syndrome, and orthostatic hypotension. Mestinon contains the active ingredient pyridostigmine bromide, which is an orally active cholinesterase inhibitor. It works by increasing the amount of acetylcholine available at the neuromuscular junction, allowing for improved communication between nerve and muscle.
Mestinon is typically taken orally, and while it does not cure myasthenia gravis, it can help to improve the symptoms associated with the condition, such as muscle weakness, drooping eyelids, and double vision. Taking Mestinon can help reduce symptoms such as muscle weakness and fatigue, which are common in those with myasthenia gravis. Mestinon should only be taken under the guidance of a healthcare professional.
Uses and Dosage
Mestinon typically comes in tablet form and should be taken by mouth with or without food as directed by a healthcare professional. It is usually taken 1 to 2 times daily, at least 6 hours apart. Swallow the whole or split tablet without crushing or chewing. Doing so can release all the drug at once, increasing the risk of side effects.
The dosage is based on the individual’s medical condition and response to treatment. Take the dosage regularly to get the most benefit from it and to not increase the dose or use the medication more often or for longer than prescribed, as this can increase the risk of side effects.
The recommended dosages ranged from 600mg/day spaced to provide maximum relief to ten 60mg tablets or ten 5 mL teaspoonfuls daily, spaced to provide maximum relief when maximum strength is needed, to a maximum daily dose of 7 mg/kg per 24 hours divided in five to six doses.
Common Side Effects of Mestinon (Pyridostigmine):
- Cough with mucus
- Increased salivation
- Muscle cramps
- Stomach pain
Serious Side Effects of Mestinon (Pyridostigmine):
- Blurred vision
- Extreme muscle weakness
- Loss of movement in any part of your body
- Slurred speech, vision problems
- Weak or shallow breathing
- Worsening or no improvement in your symptoms of myasthenia gravis
Form and Strength
Mestinon (Pyridostigmine) is available in the following forms and strengths:
- 60 mg
- 60 mg
- Tell your healthcare provider about any medical conditions, medications, or supplements you are currently taking before starting Mestinon. Mestinon can interact with certain medications and medical conditions.
- Mestinon can cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, increased salivation, sweating, flushing, and muscle twitching. More serious side effects may include difficulty breathing, chest pain, irregular heartbeat, and seizures.
- Use caution when driving or operating heavy machinery while taking Mestinon, as it can cause dizziness, blurred vision, and other side effects that may affect your ability to safely perform these tasks.
- During pregnancy, Mestinon should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
- The kidneys are responsible for clearing pyridostigmine (Mestinon) out of the body. If you have kidney disease, you may need to take a lower dose of this medication to prevent it from building up in the body and causing side effects.
- Mestinon can also cause an exacerbation of asthma symptoms in patients with asthma, so it is important to discuss this with your healthcare provider before starting the medication.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How should I take Mestinon?
The recommended dosage of Mestinon can vary depending on the condition being treated and the individual patient.
Can I take Mestinon with other medications?
Mestinon can interact with cholinergic agents, anticholinergics, and other medications used for the treatment of myasthenia gravis. Consult with a healthcare provider before taking any other medications while using Mestinon.
How long does it take for Mestinon to start working?
The onset of action of Mestinon is generally within 30 minutes to one hour and the peak effect is typically seen within 1-2 hours.
Can Mestinon be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women?
For pregnant or breastfeeding women to use Mestinon unless the potential benefits outweigh the potential risks.
Can Mestinon be used during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
It is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women to use Mestinon unless the potential benefits outweigh the potential risks.