Aralen is an antimalarial medication with anti-inflammatory, and potential chemosensitization and radiosensitization activities.
How does it work?
This drug has antiprotozoal, immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory effects. It causes the death of asexual erythrocyte forms of all types of plasmodia. It has a gametocidal effect, with the exception of Plasmodium falciparum.
Aralen is used in the treatment of all types of malaria, as well as the chronic and subacute form of systemic lupus erythematosus.
In addition, the drug is used to treat extraintestinal amoebiasis, rheumatoid arthritis, photodermatosis, amoebic liver abscess, scleroderma.
Do not use Aralen if you have impaired renal function, severe cardiac arrhythmias, inhibition of bone marrow hematopoiesis, liver dysfunction, neutropenia, psoriatic arthritis, porphyrinuria.
The drug is not intended for use in pregnant women, patients with hypersensitivity to the components of the drug and breastfeeding women. It is prescribed with caution in patients with epilepsy, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency, and retinopathy.
Dosage and administration
Long-term use of the drug should be accompanied by the systematic conduct of general laboratory blood tests, in addition, it is desirable that the eye doctor periodically examine the patient.
Tablets must be taken after meals. When treating malaria, the patient should receive from 2 to 2.75 g of the drug per treatment course: on the first day, the patient takes 0.5 g every 11 or 12 hours; 0.5 or 0.75 g – on the second and third days. The highest single adult dose should not exceed 1.5 g. Children from 6 to 10 years old receive 0.25 g on the first day, then on the second and third days 0.125 g. Children from 10 to 15 years old receive 0.5 g the drug on the first day, and 0.25 g – on the second and third days.
To prevent a malaria infection, patients take 0.5 g twice every seven days.
In the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, patients take 0.5 g twice a day for 6 or 8 days, and then 0.25 g every day for another 12 months.
- Digestive system: nausea, vomiting, gastralgia;
- Cardiovascular system: myocardial damage with changes in the electrocardiogram (ECG), lowering blood pressure;
- Allergic reactions: dermatitis, photosensitivity;
- Sensory organs: with prolonged use – cloudy cornea, damage to the retina, impaired vision, ringing in the ears;
- Nervous system: dizziness, headache, sleep disturbances, psychoses, epileptic seizures;
- Other: myalgia, leukopenia, discoloration of the skin and hair.
Interaction with other drugs
- Co-administration of chloroquine and phenylbutazone, gold preparations, penicillamine, cytostatics, levamisole increases the likelihood of bone marrow aplasia and skin lesions;
- Antacids disrupt the absorption of chloroquine;
- Cimetidine increases the concentration of the drug in the blood;
- Co-administration of chloroquine and other antimalarial drugs may cause an antagonistic effect;
- Also, it’s not recommended to use this drug together with glucocorticosteroids, monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOs), ethanol, and cardiac glycosides.
Pregnancy and lactation
The use of Aralen during pregnancy is possible only when the intended benefit to the mother outweighs the potential risk to the fetus. If it is necessary to use this drug during lactation, you should terminate breastfeeding.
Symptoms: headache, impaired consciousness, vomiting, visual disturbances, cramps, and collapse. Death can occur within 2 hours from respiratory depression.
Treatment: gastric lavage, activated carbon, the use of emetics, peritoneal dialysis.