Oseltamivir (By mouth)

Introduction

Oseltamivir (oh-sel-TAM-i-vir)

Treats and helps prevent the flu (influenza type A and type B, and swine influenza A).

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

Tamiflu

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you or your child have had an allergic reaction to oseltamivir.

How to Use This Medicine

Capsule, Liquid

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to. Do not take this medicine for any illness other than influenza A or B.
  • It is best to start taking this medicine as soon as possible after flu symptoms start or after being exposed to the flu (within the first 2 days).
  • You may take this medicine with or without food.
  • Shake the oral liquid medicine before each use. Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup.
  • If the oral liquid is not available, you may open the capsules and mix the contents into a bowl with sweetened liquids such as regular or sugar-free chocolate syrup. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
  • Keep using this medicine for the full treatment time, even if you feel better after the first few doses. Your infection may not clear up if you stop using the medicine too soon.
  • This medicine comes with patient instructions. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the capsules at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Store the oral liquid in the refrigerator, away from heat and direct light. Do not freeze. Use the medicine within 10 days after you fill the prescription.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you or your child plan to get the live nasal mist flu vaccine before you start using this medicine. You should not receive the vaccine within two weeks before or 48 hours after using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you or your child are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, liver disease, heart disease, lung disease, or a weakened immune system.
  • The liquid form of this medicine contains sorbitol. Make sure your doctor knows if you or your child have a condition called hereditary fructose intolerance before you start using this medicine.
  • This medicine is not a substitute for an annual flu shot. It also will not keep you from getting a bacterial infection that starts with flu-like symptoms.
  • Do not give this medicine to a child under 1 year of age.
  • This medicine may cause a serious type of allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Call your doctor right away if you have a rash; itching; hoarseness; trouble breathing; trouble swallowing; or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth while you are using this medicine.
  • Serious skin reactions can occur with this medicine. Check with your doctor right away if you have blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin; red skin lesions; severe acne or skin rash; sores or ulcers on the skin; or fever or chills while you are using this medicine.
  • This medicine may cause abnormal behavior that may lead to injury. Report any unusual thoughts or behaviors that trouble you or your child, especially if they are new or are getting worse quickly. Make sure the doctor knows if you or your child have trouble sleeping, get upset easily, have a big increase in energy, or start to act reckless. Also tell the doctor if you or your child have sudden or strong feelings, such as feeling nervous, angry, restless, violent, or scared.
  • Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your doctor.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Blistering, peeling, or red skin rash.
  • Chest pain.
  • Confusion, anxiety, agitation, trouble sleeping, or any change in mood or behavior.
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches.
  • Seizures.
  • Uneven heartbeat.
  • Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness.
  • Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Ear pain or change in hearing.
  • Eye pain, redness, or discharge.
  • Headache or dizziness.
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, or upset stomach.
  • Runny or stuffy nose.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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