Lariam


Lariam is an affordable and effective treatment option for people planning to travel to areas with a high-risk of the malaria parasite, such as Central and South America, parts of Africa and Asia, Haiti and the Dominican Republic, parts of the Middle East and some Pacific Islands. Lariam only needs to be taken weekly. It can cause severe side effects in some people.

Lariam
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Type Delivery date Cost
UPS Standard Friday 25 Jun £4.00
Royal Mail Special Delivery Wednesday 23 Jun by 01:00PM £6.00

What is Lariam?

Lariam is used as a preventative treatment for the malaria parasite. Unlike many other leading malaria medications, each dose of Lariam only needs to be taken once per week. A course of Lariam should start around 2-3 weeks before you travel in order to encourage the maximum level of effectiveness. You should preferably start taking Lariam around 2-3 weeks before your trip. It should also be used alongside certain anti-malaria precautions, including insect repellent, light and loose long-sleeved clothing, air conditioning, screen doors and mosquito nets.

How does Lariam work?

Lariam works to prevent the malaria parasite from spreading by using its active ingredient melfloquine. Melfloquine works by interfering with the growth of malaria parasites in the red blood cells within the body. Malaria needs to multiply in order to survive, so preventing this makes the parasite more vulnerable and allows the body’s immune system to effectively trap and kill the infection.

Benefits of Lariam

Malaria is an extremely serious condition which can even be fatal. It is spread through the bites of certain female mosquitos that thrive in many tropical areas. The body is infected with one of five strands of the plasmodium parasite, which spreads in the body to cause malaria. Antimalaria medication like Lariam is vital in order to significantly reduce your chances of contracting the infection.

Unlike antimalarial medications given as a daily dose, Lariam only needs to be taken once a week. This means that it is easy to fit treatment around your travel routine.

How to take Lariam

One dose of Lariam should be taken orally on the same day every week. You should start taking it 2-3 weeks before you travel, as this can make it clear whether or not you are likely to experience side effects. Continue to take one tablet weekly throughout your holiday abroad. Once you return from your trip, you should carry on taking your weekly dose of Lariam on the same day for 4 weeks. This will give you the best possible chance of avoiding malaria. Overall, Lariam should be taken for a minimum six weeks. Tablets should be swallowed whole with water and preferably after a meal.

Precautions and side effects

Most people can complete a course of Lariam without experiencing significant side effects. However, it is not advised to be taken by people who are prone to mental health conditions or negative mental states, as it may exacerbate or cause mental health concerns in some people.

It is important to seek medical help if any of the following occur when taking Lariam:

  • Severe anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Depression
  • Hallucinations
  • Nightmares
  • Insomnia
  • Confusion
  • Restlessness
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Self-harming
  • Any unusual behaviour

In very rare cases, Lariam can also result in more physical side effects, as is the case with all anti-malaria medication. These side effects include dizziness, headaches, nausea, vertigo, blurred vision, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain and itching.

You should avoid taking Lariam if you are currently pregnant or breastfeeding. Take caution when driving or operating machinery if you are taking Lariam. You should also consult a healthcare professional before taking Lariam if you are currently using any other prescription medication. Be sure to read the full Patient Information Leaflet for further information on the side effects and precautions associated with Lariam.


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