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Symmetrel is an anti-Parkinson and antiviral drug used to prevent or treat symptoms of infection caused by strains of influenza. It can be indicated to treat Parkinson's disease and "Parkinson-like" symptoms such as stiffness or tremors, shaking, and repetitive uncontrolled movements.
Each Symmetrel tablet contains 100 mg amantadine hydrochloride. Amantadine works by blocking the actions of viruses in the body and by restoring the balance of natural substances in the brain. It increases the release of dopamine, a neurotransmitter, and inhibits its reuptake, which helps to reduce the symptoms of Parkinson's disease.
Use and Dosage
Amantadine is taken orally in tablet form either with or without food, as directed by a doctor, typically once or twice a day. If taking it twice daily, take the second dose several hours before bedtime if experiencing trouble sleeping after taking it. Swallow the whole tablet with water, as directed by a doctor. Chewing the tablet may affect its effectiveness and alter its intended release mechanism.
The dosage prescribed is based on a patient's medical condition and their response to the medication, with children's dosage also based on their body weight. Patients should not exceed the recommended dosage as prescribed by their doctor. Taking the tablet at evenly spaced intervals throughout the day and night helps maintain a constant level of medication in the body, maximizing its effectiveness.
Amantadine may take several weeks to show its effects on Parkinson's disease. Patients should not abruptly stop taking the medication as it may worsen symptoms or cause side effects; doctors may gradually reduce doses instead. It may become less effective after several months of use, and patients must inform their doctor if it stops working well.
Common Side Effects of Symmetrel Tablet (Amantadine):
- Abnormal dreams
- Decreased appetite
- Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
- Dry mouth
- Lace-like purple pattern on skin
- Uncontrollable tightening of muscles, change from normal walking and falls
Serious Side Effects of Symmetrel Tablet (Amantadine):
- Believing things that are not true
- blurred vision
- Difficulty urinating
- Lack of interest
- Not trusting others or feeling that others want to hurt you
- Shortness of breath
- Suicidal (thinking about, planning, or trying to harm or kill oneself)
- Swelling of the hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
Forms and Strength
Symmetrel Tablet (Amantadine) is available in the following forms and strength:
- Caution should be observed when prescribing Symmetrel to patients being treated with drugs having CNS (central nervous system) effects or for patients with a history of seizures.
- Symmetrel may cause dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting, especially when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position. Patients are advised to be cautious when driving or performing other tasks that require alertness.
- Symmetrel may also cause confusion, hallucinations, or other changes in mental status, especially in elderly patients. Patients are advised to inform their doctor if they experience these symptoms.
- Patients should not use Symmetrel if they have received a nasal flu vaccine in the past 14 days.
- Patients are advised to inform their doctor if they are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding before taking Symmetrel.
- Patients with a history of heart disease should use Symmetrel with caution as it may cause an irregular heartbeat or worsen heart failure symptoms.
- Symmetrel may increase the risk of developing skin cancer, particularly in patients who have had long-term treatment with the medication. Patients are advised to avoid excessive sunlight and tanning beds and to use sunscreen while taking Symmetrel.
- Symmetrel may cause the urine to turn a reddish-brown color. It is a harmless side effect, but patients should notify their doctor if it occurs.
- Patients with kidney problems may need a lower dose of Symmetrel or may not be able to take the medication at all. Patients with liver problems may also require a lower dose and should be monitored closely while taking Symmetrel.
- Symmetrel may interact with other medications, including anticholinergic drugs, diuretics, and certain antidepressants. Patients are advised to inform their doctor of all medications they are taking before starting Symmetrel.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can Symmetrel cause drowsiness?
Yes, Symmetrel may cause drowsiness or dizziness. Patients are advised to avoid driving or performing other tasks that require alertness until they know how Symmetrel affects them.
Does Symmetrel cure Parkinson's disease?
No, Symmetrel does not cure Parkinson's disease, but it can help improve symptoms such as stiffness, tremors, and uncontrolled movements.
Can Symmetrel be used in children?
Symmetrel is not recommended for use in children unless it is prescribed by a doctor.
How long does it take for Symmetrel to work?
The time it takes for Symmetrel to work may vary depending on the specific condition being treated. Patients should follow their doctor's instructions carefully and allow enough time for the medication to take effect.
Can Symmetrel be stopped abruptly?
No, patients should not stop taking Symmetrel abruptly as this may cause withdrawal symptoms. Patients should speak with their doctor about gradually reducing their dosage before stopping the medication completely.
It's important to purchase Symmetrel Tablet from verified Canadian pharmacy.