Nitazoxanide is used to treat diarrhea in children and adults caused by the protozoa Cryptosporidium or Giardia. Protozoa are suspected as the cause when diarrhea lasts more than 7 days. Nitazoxanide is in a class of medications called antiprotozoal agents. It works by stopping the growth of certain protozoa that cause diarrhea.
Nitazoxanide comes as a tablet and a suspension (liquid) to take by mouth. It is usually taken with food every 12 hours for 3 days. Take nitazoxanide at around the same times every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take nitazoxanide exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Shake the suspension well before each use to mix the medication evenly.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
To prevent dehydration caused by diarrhea, make sure you or your child gets enough to drink. Take small, frequent sips of water, fruit juice, sports drinks, or broth.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
Nitazoxanide may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online [at http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch] or by phone [1-800-332-1088].
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Throw away any unused nitazoxanide suspension after 7 days. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Patients with diabetes should know that there are 1.48 grams of sucrose in each teaspoon (5 mL) of nitazoxanide suspension.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Your prescription is probably not refillable. If you still have diarrhea after you finish the nitazoxanide, call your doctor.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
Last Reviewed - 09/01/2010
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, 2015. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.