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Qualaquin

Last reviewed on RxList: 11/28/2016
Qualaquin Side Effects Center

Last reviewed on RxList 11/30/2016

Qualaquin (quinine sulfate) is an antimalarial drug used to treat malaria, a disease caused by parasites. Parasites that cause malaria typically enter the body through the bite of a mosquito. Malaria is common in areas such as Africa, South America, and Southern Asia. Common side effects of Qualaquin include:

  • mild headache,
  • flushing,
  • unusual sweating,
  • nausea,
  • upset stomach,
  • muscle weakness,
  • ringing in the ears,
  • decreased hearing,
  • dizziness,
  • spinning sensation,
  • blurred vision, and
  • temporary changes in color vision.

Tell your doctor if you have rare but very serious side effects of Qualaquin including:

  • easy bruising or bleeding,
  • unusual purple/brown/red spots on the skin,
  • signs of serious infection (such as high fever, severe chills, persistent sore throat),
  • signs of a sudden loss of red blood cells called hemolytic anemia (such as severe tiredness, brown urine, pale lips/nails/skin, rapid breathing at rest),
  • signs of severe liver problems (such as persistent nausea/vomiting, abdominal pain, severe weakness, yellow skin or eyes, unusually dark urine), or
  • changes in the amount of urine.

For treatment of uncomplicated malaria in adults the dose of Qualaquin is 648 mg (two capsules) taken orally every 8 hours for 7 days. Qualaquin may interact with arsenic trioxide, atorvastatin, cimetidine, cisapride, ranitidine, dextromethorphan, digoxin, droperidol, metoprolol, paroxetine, rifampin, aminophylline or theophylline, blood thinners, antibiotics, antidepressants, other anti-malaria medications, heart rhythm medicine, medicine to prevent or treat nausea and vomiting, medicines to treat psychiatric disorders, migraine headache medicine, narcotics, or seizure medication. Tell your doctor all medications you are taking. Qualaquin is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm a fetus. This drug passes into breast milk but is unlikely to harm some nursing infants. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding as your doctor will need to perform a certain enzyme deficiency test on your infant (glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency-G6PD) before you breastfeed.

Our Qualaquin (quinine sulfate) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Qualaquin Consumer Information

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using quinine and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • fever, chills, confusion, weakness, sweating;
  • severe vomiting, stomach pain, diarrhea;
  • problems with vision or hearing;
  • chest pain, trouble breathing, severe dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeats;
  • severe flushing (warmth, redness, or tingly feeling);
  • urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • weak or shallow breathing, feeling like you might pass out;
  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin;
  • blood in your urine or stools;
  • fever, sore throat, and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash; or
  • loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • headache, blurred vision, changes in color vision;
  • mild dizziness, spinning sensation, ringing in your ears;
  • upset stomach; or
  • muscle weakness.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Qualaquin (Quinine Sulfate Capsules)

Qualaquin Professional Information

SIDE EFFECTS

Overall

Quinine can adversely affect almost every body system. The most common adverse events associated with quinine use are a cluster of symptoms called “cinchonism”, which occurs to some degree in almost all patients taking quinine. Symptoms of mild cinchonism include headache, vasodilation and sweating, nausea, tinnitus, hearing impairment, vertigo or dizziness, blurred vision, and disturbance in color perception. More severe symptoms of cinchonism are vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, deafness, blindness, and disturbances in cardiac rhythm or conduction. Most symptoms of cinchonism are reversible and resolve with discontinuation of quinine.

The following ADVERSE REACTIONS have been reported with quinine sulfate. Because these reactions have been reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure.

General: fever, chills, sweating, flushing, asthenia, lupus-like syndrome, and hypersensitivity reactions.

Hematologic: agranulocytosis, hypoprothrombinemia, thrombocytopenia, disseminated intravascular coagulation, hemolytic anemia; hemolytic uremic syndrome, thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura, idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, petechiae, ecchymosis, hemorrhage, coagulopathy, blackwater fever, leukopenia, neutropenia, pancytopenia, aplastic anemia, and lupus anticoagulant.

Neuropsychiatric: headache, diplopia, confusion, altered mental status, seizures, coma, disorientation, tremors, restlessness, ataxia, acute dystonic reaction, aphasia, and suicide.

Dermatologic: cutaneous rashes, including urticarial, papular, or scarlatinal rashes, pruritus, bullous dermatitis, exfoliative dermatitis, erythema multiforme, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis, fixed drug eruption, photosensitivity reactions, allergic contact dermatitis, acral necrosis, and cutaneous vasculitis.

Respiratory: asthma, dyspnea, pulmonary edema.

Cardiovascular: chest pain, vasodilatation, hypotension, postural hypotension, tachycardia, bradycardia, palpitations, syncope, atrioventricular block, atrial fibrillation, irregular rhythm, unifocal premature ventricular contractions, nodal escape beats, U waves, QT prolongation, ventricular fibrillation, ventricular tachycardia, torsades de pointes, and cardiac arrest.

Gastrointestinal: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, gastric irritation, and esophagitis.

Hepatobiliary: granulomatous hepatitis, hepatitis, jaundice, and abnormal liver function tests.

Metabolic: hypoglycemia and anorexia.

Musculoskeletal: myalgias and muscle weakness.

Renal: hemoglobinuria, renal failure, renal impairment, and acute interstitial nephritis.

Special Senses: visual disturbances, including blurred vision with scotomata, sudden loss of vision, photophobia, diplopia, night blindness, diminished visual fields, fixed pupillary dilatation, disturbed color vision, optic neuritis, blindness, vertigo, tinnitus, hearing impairment, and deafness.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Qualaquin (Quinine Sulfate Capsules)

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© Qualaquin Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Qualaquin Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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