What is Malarone?
Malarone is an antimalarial medication used to prevent a P. falciparum parasite infection in areas where there is resistance to other antimalarial drugs. It contains two active ingredients Atovaquone and Proguanil. These distinctly different substances work together to prevent malaria from developing in the human body.
What is Generic Malarone?
Generic Malarone contains Atovaquone and Proguanil. It is medically equivalent to Malarone, but available for a lower price. Both Malarone and Generic Malarone contain the same active ingredients and the same amount of them. They work the same way in the body to prevent a malaria infection. All generic medications available in the UK have to demonstrate equivalency before they can be sold, meaning they have the same effect in the body as the original brand. Generic medicines are as equally effective as the original.
How does Malarone work?
When an infected mosquito bites a human, it injects the parasite into the bloodstream. The treatment Malarone targets the parasite and kills it before it can grow and spread. Malarone prevents malaria from developing so it is important to start the treatment before you enter the endemic area.
How do I take Malarone?
You should start the treatment with one Malarone tablet daily 1-2 days before entering the endemic area, for the entire duration of your stay and continue for at least one week after your return from the infected area to make sure that any malarial parasite presence in your body is completely eradicated. You should take your daily dose with food to ensure maximum absorption into the body.
Which is better: Malarone or Doxycycline?
Choosing an antimalarial treatment depends on your preferences and the antimalarial drug resistance present at your destination. While Malarone only needs to be taken for one week after leaving the affected area, Doxycycline needs to be taken for another 4 weeks after leaving. Also, Malarone has less side effects, while Doxycycline is cheaper. Another point to keep in mind is that Doxycycline can decrease the efficacy of the contraceptive pill, so Malarone is a better choice for women using this method of birth control.
It is very important you do not stop taking Malarone early, as it takes 7 days post-return to ensure that any malaria parasites in the blood are completely eradicated.
What are the side effects of Malarone?
All antimalarial medication have some side effects and Malarone is no different. Common side effects include:
- stomach pain
Can I take Malarone if I am pregnant?
You should not take Malarone if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, unless your doctor recommends it.
Always read the patient information leaflet before commencing treatment.
- The patient information leaflet can be found here.