(1995; 152 pages) [French] [Spanish]
Group: anthelminthic agent
Tablet 40 mg, 50 mg (as hydrochloride)
Syrup 40 mg/5 ml
Levamisole, the (-)-isomer of tetramisole, acts by paralysing the musculature of susceptible nematodes. Unable to maintain their anchorage, the worms are ejected by normal peristaltic action, usually within 24 hours.
Levamisole is rapidly and almost completely absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract. Peak plasma concentrations occur within 2 hours and the plasma half-life is about 4 hours. It is extensively metabolized in the liver and is excreted in the urine as metabolites and unchanged drug.
Treatment of ascariasis and mixed ascariasis/hookworm infections.
Dosage and administration
Adults and children: a single dose of 2.5 mg/kg is used widely for both individual treatment and community-based campaigns. In cases of severe hookworm infection a second standard dose may be given 7 days after the first.
In the doses recommended for treatment of helminthic infections there are no absolute contraindications.
Use in pregnancy
Animal studies have provided no evidence of teratogenicity. Although high priority should be accorded to the treatment of pregnant women, levamisole should preferably not be administered during the first trimester.
Abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, dizziness and headache are occasionally reported.
Emesis or gastric lavage may be of value if undertaken within a few hours of ingestion. Treatment is otherwise symptomatic and supportive.
Tablets and syrup should be stored in well-closed containers.