GENERIC NAME: hydroxychloroquine
BRAND NAME: Plaquenil
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Hydroxychloroquine is classified as an anti-malarial drug. It is similar to chloroquine (Aralen) and is useful in treating several forms of malaria as well as lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis. Its mechanism of action is unknown. Malarial parasites invade human red blood cells. Hydroxychloroquine may prevent malarial parasites from breaking down (metabolizing) hemoglobin in human red blood cells. Hydroxychloroquine is effective against the malarial parasites Plasmodium vivax, P. malariae, P. ovale, and susceptible strains of P. falciparum. Hydroxychloroquine prevents inflammation caused by lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis. The FDA approved hydroxychloroquine in April, 1955.
GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes
PREPARATIONS: Tablet: 200 mg.
STORAGE: Hydroxychloroquine should be stored at room temperature up to 30 C (86 F) in a sealed, light resistant container.
PRESCRIBED FOR: Hydroxychloroquine is used for the treatment of malaria due to Plasmodium vivax, P. malariae, P. ovale, and susceptible strains of P. falciparum. It also is used for treating rheumatoid arthritis, and chronic discoid and systemic lupus erythematosus when other therapies have failed. It may prevent relapse and relieve skin inflammation, hair loss, mouth sores, fatigue, and joint pain caused by systemic lupus erythematosus.
Quick GuideRheumatoid Arthritis (RA) Pictures Slideshow
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
Need help identifying pills and medications?
Use the pill identifier tool on RxList.