Cinnarizine

Pronunciation: cin-nar-I-zine

What is it

It is an antihistamine drug that used to treat travel sickness.

Brand names with manufacturer

Stugeron, Stunarone, Arlevert

Type:

It is available as a prescription drug as well  as can be bought as an Over-the-counter drug from the pharmacy.

Uses

Main

There are a number of problems treated with Cinnarizine. These include:

  • Treatment of travel sickness of balance disorder treatment
  • Treatment of vestibular disorders
  • Treatment of balance disorders such as Ménières disease, vertigo, tinnitus, nausea, vomiting as well as sickness during road or sea travel.

Other

In some cases, the doctor may prescribe Cinnarizine in cases that are not listed above.

What should I know before taking this drug

How to take it

Take the medicine by mouth, 3 times daily in case of balancing problems. It can also be taken several hours before or every 8 hours when travelling to overcome travel sickness. You can either chew, suck or swallow the tablet whole.

Always take the drug at the same time daily. The drug takes several hours after consumption to show the full effect.

Adverse reactions/side effects

Like all drugs, Cinnarizine can lead to an allergic reaction. One may suffer from swelling of the lips, mouth, face, neck, breathing problems, skin rash or hives. The allergic reaction to the drug is quite rare, however, it is very serious and needs immediate medical attention.

Some of the common side effects of Cinnarizine include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Stomach upset

When not to take the medicine

  • Cinnarizine should not be taken if one is allergic to any ingredient in the drug or Cinnarizine itself.
  • Those who suffer from prophyria
  • Those who have Parkinson’s disease
  • Are taking antidepressant medications or other sedatives
  • Never drink alcohol when taking Cinnarizine.
  • The drug contains small amount of lactose, thus, those who are lactose intolerant should avoid Cinnarizine.

Precautions

Children

The drug should not be given to children under the age of 5 years.

Geriatric use

Cinnarizine can be used by the elderly who do not suffer from Parkinson’s or are not on any sedatives or antidepressants.

Pregnant women

Cinnarizine belongs to Category Pregnancy C. Thus, those who are pregnant or planning to get pregnant cannot take the medicine, unless advised by the doctor.

Lactating women

Nursing mothers should not take Cinnarizine.

Other

Do not drive or operate machinery when taking Cinnarizine as it may lead to dizziness and drowsiness.

What should I do if

I miss dose(s)

If you have missed your dose, take the dose as soon as you remember it. If it is time for the next dose, skip the one missed. Never double dose on Cinnarizine.

I take an overdose

If you take more Cinnarizine, then call your doctor or local emergency department. An overdose can cause vomiting, drowsiness, tremor, hypotonia, and even coma in extreme cases.

What to discuss with the doctor/pharmacist

Drug interactions

Do not take the drug if you are using antidepressants, medications for insomnia or anxiety. Tell your doctor about all the medications or drug supplements you are using before taking the drug.

Dosage form

Doses

The dose for Ménière’s disease in adults and children over 12 years of age is 2 to 3 tablets a day. Children 5 years up to 12 years can take one tablet, 3 times a day.

Adults and children over 12 years of age with travel sickness can take 2 tablets 2 hours before traveling and then 1 tablet every 8 hours during the journey, or as advised by the doctor. Children aged 5 years up to 12 years can take 1 tablet 2 hours before they travel and half a tablet every 8 hours during the journey, if necessary.

Storage

Store in a cool, dry place, preferably in the original packaging. Keep out of reach and sight of children. Never take a drug that has passed its expiry date.

Written by: healthplus24.com team

Date last updated: June 08, 2015