What is Tamiflu?

Tamiflu (Oseltamivir) is a member of the influenza neuraminidase inhibitor family, approved for medical use in 1999. Initially, the World Health Organization placed Tamiflu in the list of Essential medicine required by the health sector, but later on, it got the status of complementary medicine in 2017. Tamiflu is available only with a proper prescription from a doctor, and you can take medicine orally (in the form of oral tablets, capsules, or oral suspension)

What is the use of Tamiflu?

Your doctor will choose to treat you with Tamiflu if you are suffering from any of the following medical condition:

  • Influenza A (treatment and prevention)
  • Influenza B (treatment and prevention)
  • Any other conditions as determined by the doctor

Tamiflu dosage

Take Tamiflu dosage as exactly prescribed by your doctor, and please don’t take it more often than prescribed. Your doctor should prescribe you the lowest possible dose in starting and then gradually increase or decrease your medicine dose according to your health condition. To determine a suitable dosage, they should make a full and proper medical checkup of the patient.

Your doctor will recommend Tamiflu depending on several factors such as:

  • Your age
  • Your weight
  • Your medical condition
  • Other health disorder you already have
  • How you responded to the first dose of the medicine

The following is the Tamiflu usual dose that a doctor can prescribe according to different medical conditions:

In the form of oral tablets

Dosage for treatment of flu

  • For adults (18 years and above)

The usual dose of Tamiflu for treating flu is 75 mg of the medicine, twice a day for five days.

  • For children (more than 13 years but less than 18 years)

Tamiflu dosage for this age group will be as same as the Adult dose.

  • For children (more than two weeks but less than 13 years)

Tamiflu dosage for children less than 13 years of age is dependent on their body weight.

  • For children (below two weeks)

Authorities have not approved Tamiflu for children below two weeks of age for treating symptoms of flu.

Dosage for prevention of flu

  • For adults (18 years and above)

75 mg of medicine, once a day, for ten days to 6 weeks.

  • For children (more than 13 years but less than 18 years)

Tamiflu dosage for this age group will be as same as the Adult dose.

  • For children (more than one year but less than 13 years)

Tamiflu dosage for children less than 13 years of age is dependent on their body weight.

  • For children (below one year)

Authorities have not approved Tamiflu for children less than one year for treating symptoms of flu.

Doctors should be extra careful while prescribing Tamiflu dose to the patients affected with any kidney disorder.

How do Tamiflu works?

Tamiflu is an antiviral, and it works similarly to other antiviral medicines. Tamiflu converts itself into an active form that attaches to the influenza virus, prevents its reproduction, and allows the immune system to fight against the virus. Tamiflu also prevents the virus from releasing viral particles, spreading the infection inside the body and other people.

What to know before using Tamiflu?

It is best to keep the following points in mind before using Tamiflu:

  • Please don’t take Tamiflu without a proper prescription from your doctor.
  • If you are allergic to Tamiflu or its components or similar medicines, please avoid it.
  • Health authorities have not approved Tamiflu for the patients below two weeks.
  • Tamiflu will work more effectively if you take it within 48 hours after observing the first infection symptom.
  • To ensure that taking Tamiflu is safe for you, you should tell your health expert if you have or ever had the following disorder:
    • Kidney disease
    • Heart disease
    • Chronic lung disease
    • Swelling in the brain
    • Weak immunity
    • Hereditary fructose intolerance
  • Avoid Tamiflu if you have taken the flu vaccine (FluMist) within the last 14 days.
  • Expecting women should not take Tamiflu without consulting their doctor as it may harm their child and increase the risks of congenital disabilities to the child.
  • The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has Approved a yearly flu vaccine for expecting women to prevent Influenza.
  • Tamiflu may pass into the breast milk and harm the nursing baby; therefore, it is advisable for lactating mothers to not take the said medicine without consulting their doctor.
  • It is the patients’ responsibility to say to the doctor about all their current medications. Their medical professional will prescribe them Tamiflu accordingly to avoid interaction between drugs. The following medicines may interact with Tamiflu or may increase the risk of certain side effects or can make other treatments less effective:
    • Nasal flu vaccine (FluMist)
    • Vitamins and other nutritional supplements
    • Herbal products
    • Other over the counter medications
  • If you ever experience uneasiness after taking Tamiflu, you should consult your doctor ASAP And ask for medical help.
  • You can also seek emergency medical assistance by calling the poison helpline at 1-800-222-1222.
  • Keep your medicine out of the reach of children.
  • Store Tamiflu at room temperature, away from heat and moisture.
  • You can ask your doctor about all the necessary precautions that you should take while using Tamiflu.
  • You should consult your doctor to learn more about the risks and benefits associated with Tamiflu.
  • After completion of treatment, ask a pharmacist near you about the proper disposal of leftover medicine.

Tamiflu side effects

The common side effects of taking Tamiflu are as follows:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headache
  • Unusual pain in the body

These side effects mentioned above will stop bothering you after a while, but if they don’t, you should consult your doctor ASAP and ask for medical help. You should stop taking medicine and tell your doctor if you ever experience any of the following health issues:

  • Sudden and unusual confusion
  • Tremors or Shivering
  • Hallucination
  • Delirium or abnormal behavior
  • Any other allergic reaction to medicine

You should also report to your doctor if you ever experience any other side effects or symptoms that are getting even worse.

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