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Preventing and Treating Influenza Virus Type A in Adults

Symmetrel is a medicine for the antiviral treatment. It is an organic compound. Symmetrel active ingredient is Amantadine which consist of an adamantane backbone that has an amino group and has many other uses. The compound is useful as building block in organic synthesis. It is prevent or treat influenza type A. It is not work for cough, cold or viral infection or another type of flu.

United States Food and Drug Administration approved the drug in October 1966 as a prophylactic agent against Asian influenza. Symmetrel received approval for the treatment influenza virus A in adults. In 1969, the drug was accidentally found to reduce symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

How does Amantadine works?

The working is unclear. Symmetrel (Generic Amantadine) can inhibit the replication of viruses in the cell. It is necessary for the drug should be available prior to viral infection. It stops the growth of virus.

What is Dose for Amantadine?

This drug comes in a capsule and liquid form to consume orally

  • Adults – 200 mg or 4 teaspoons one time a day as a single dose.
  • Older adults and children from 9 to 12 -100 mg one time a day as a single dose or in 2 doses.
  • Children 1 to 9 age- depends upon body weight. General dose is 4.4 to 8.8 mg /kg of body weight.

What are the uses of Amantadine?

Here are the 7 common uses of Amantadine:

  1. Useful as antiviral medicine for influenza type A.
  2. It is helpful in treating dyskinesia.
  3. It treats symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
  4. Improve muscle control and reduces stiffness. This allows normal movement in the disease.
  5. Treat shaking and stiffness caused due to other medicine to treat nervous, mental and emotional conditions.
  6. It is a dopamine agonist.
  7. Compound is useful as a building block in organic synthesis. It allows the insertion of an adamantly group.

What are the negatives effects of Amantadine?

Some common negative effects disappears with time they are as follow .

  • Trouble sleeping
  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Feel like fainting
  • Some side effects can be serious and One should look for doctor. They are
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling of hands, legs and feet
  • Skin rashes
  • Depression
  • Urinating problems etc.

What are the precautions in taking Amantadine?

  • Don’t use as a substitute for a flu vaccine.
  • Don’t use along with the flu vaccine that taken through the nose. This can lead to serious interaction.
  • The medicine can cause symptoms like irritable, agitated. They may display other abnormal behavior. Inform the doctor regarding the problem.
  • People with certain conditions should take special care. They are as given below;
  1. Epilepsy or seizures
  2. Heart disease
  3. Liver disease
  4. Low blood pressure
  5. Mental problems
  6. Kidney problems
  7. Glaucoma
  • No studies show safety for the use this medicine in pregnancy.
  • Nursing mothers should avoid above drug as it appears in the breast milk,
  • Avoid drinking alcohol. It can cause symptoms like side effects like Dizziness, fainting, confusion etc.

Cost of Generic Amantadine vs Symmetrel

The cost of the brand medicine increase due to,

  • The cost due to the Brand name of the company
  • The packaging.

But Generic prescription drugs are cheaper than the brand ones as they are direct sources from the manufacturer. The amount also decreases because of other cost saving measures.

The price of brand Symmetrel for 60 capsules (100 mg) is $75.90, per pill costs $1.27. Whereas the same quantity of (100 mg) pack of generic Amantadine is cheaper i.e. $35, per pill cost $0.58. The difference is double. But both show same effect as an anti-viral drug. So why not generic? Cost matters.

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