Albendazole dose for kids in worm infestation – The Miracle Anthelmintic
- What class of drug is albendazole?
- What are the uses of albendazole?
- Intestinal helminths
- Systemic helminths
- How do you know if you have worms in your stomach?
- How to use albendazole tablets or syrup in different parasitic infections?
- Is Albendazole safe for toddlers (1-3 years old child)?
- How much albendazole tablet dose for a child for deworming?
- Albendazole dose for child
- 1. Albendazole dose for infants (less than 1 year)
- 2. Albendazole dose for 1 to 2-year child
- 3. Albendazole dose for above 2 years child
- Albendazole dose for adults and older
- What to do if pinworms keep coming back?
- What would be the exact albendazole syrup dose for children?
- Should albendazole be taken before or after meals for deworming?
Do you know the right dose of albendazole in kids?
You generally use this medicine but don’t know the exact dose. Today, I will tell you the proper albendazole dose for kids in different worm infestations.
Albendazole is an anthelmintics drug that kills or expels the worms from your intestine.
You will be shocked to know that 64% of children were at risk from STH (Soil-Transmitted Helminths) in 2012.
Worm infestation can spread to anyone, but it is more prevalent in children who live in a soil area or live in an unhygienic environment, eat without washing their hands, and play with pets like cats or dogs.
Generally, all worms are known as parasitic worms. In medical terms, they are knowns as helminths. If you get worms infection, it would say Helminthiasis.
Although Helminthiasis is rarely deadly, it frequently makes your health ill, especially in children.
In 2015, the Government of India launched a fixed date (National Deworming Day) for deworming for all children aged 1-19 years on 10th February every year.
Albendazole medicine is well approved by FDA.
This Albendazole drug is typically administered during National Deworming Day at school sites, Anganwadi centers, and many health centers to prevent the spread of parasitic worms.
This article aims to provide an accurate dose of albendazole to your kids.
This article will discuss how to take the exact albendazole dose for kids like infants (1-2 years), toddlers/preschool (2-3 years), and school-aged children (more than 3 years).
Let’s start with basic information on albendazole medicine.
What class of drug is albendazole?
Albendazole is a prescription medication used to treat infections caused by a type of worm called a helminth.
This drug belongs to a group of medicines called anthelmintics. It is a broad-spectrum anthelmintic of the benzimidazole class that is designed to treat all worms.
What are the uses of albendazole?
Since albendazole is a broad-spectrum anthelmintic, therefore it is an effective drug in various intestinal worms and systemic (or tissue) worm parasites.
Certain parasitic worms may enter your body due to a poor hygienic environment. These parasitic worms live in your intestine. They grow gradually by absorbing nutrients and glucose from your body. As a result, these worms get start to multiply by producing eggs.
Here, Albendazole drug is used in the treatment of the following diseases –
- Roundworm disease (Ascariasis & Strongyloidiasis) – Roundworm grows in the small intestine. It may penetrate in blood and infect your lungs. This worm can be fatal in immunosuppressed patients.
- Hookworm disease (ancylostomiasis and necatoriasis) – Hookworm lives in the small intestine of an infected person. It causes anemia via losing intestinal blood loss.
- Pinworm or threadworm disease (Enterobiasis) – white worms can be seen in the stool.
- Whipworm disease (Trichuriasis) – generally lives in the large intestine.
Hookworm, roundworm, and whipworm are known as soil-transmitted helminths.
Pinworm or threadworm is the most common parasite that causes infestation in kids.
Worm infestation can be fatal if worms migrate into your blood and tissues. It can penetrate your tissue or blood via the intestine, skin, and respiration.
Fortunately, albendazole is a highly effective drug, even in systemic helminths.
Albendazole can be used in certain diseases like –
- Filariasis – Worms cause blockage of your lymph flow. Due to this, your arms, legs, and scrotum may fill with fluid.
- Trichinosis – Consumption of insufficiently cooked meat, especially pork, usually leads to this condition.
- Cystic hydatid infection (Echinococcosis) – Caused by larvae of Dog tapeworm. It mainly affects your liver, lungs, and brain.
- Neurocysticercosis – Caused by larvae of the pork tapeworm. It mainly affects your brain and spinal cord area.
How do you know if you have worms in your stomach?
You may have experienced the following symptoms of worms in the stomach –
- Abdominal pain
- Nausea or vomiting
- Small and white worms in stool
- Severe itching around your anus, especially at night
- Loss of weight
- Loss of appetite
- Blood in stool
Sometimes, your child may do teeth grinding. During this condition, your child may also have an abnormal craving for eating inedible foods like chalk, clay, paper, ashes, etc. This eating disorder is called Pica.
How to use albendazole tablets or syrup in different parasitic infections?
Although albendazole 400 mg is considered the standard dose for children above 2 years in most worm infections like –
- Hookworm disease (ancylostomiasis and necatoriasis)
- Roundworm infection (ascariasis)
- Whipworm infection (trichuriasis)
- Threadworm infection (strongyloidiasis)
- Pinworm infection (enterobiasis)
- Giardia infection (giardiasis in children)
However, the dose of albendazole may vary in certain worm infection like Cystic hydatid disease and Neurocysticercosis.
A cystic hydatid infection is generally caused by larvae of dog tapeworm. It mainly affects your liver, lungs, and stomach.
Whereas neurocysticercosis infection is caused by larvae of the pork tapeworm. It mainly affects your brain and spinal cord area.
Here, albendazole is considered a drug of choice in Cystic hydatid disease and Neurocysticercosis.
The dosing of albendazole in these conditions is entirely different.
If you have cystic hydatid disease, you need to take albendazole 400 mg twice for 28 days in 3 cycles of treatment, followed by a 14-day washout period.
For children, the dose will be calculated as 15mg/kg per body weight.
In Neurocysticercosis, albendazole 400 mg twice daily with meals for 8 to 30 days. It can be repeated as necessary.
Is Albendazole safe for toddlers (1-3 years old child)?
According to a study, Albendazole medicine is generally recommended as preventive chemotherapy (deworming) in children because children are more at risk of worm infection.
A single dose of Albendazole is usually recommended to every child who lives in a slum or unhygienic area.
You may give this drug to your child every year or every 6 months under medical supervision.
It is a highly effective and well-tolerated drug among children over 1 year.
A review article published in Cambridge University Press 2001 summarised the safety and efficacy of Albendazole in humans.
In this study, it was found Albendazole is absolutely safe in children and adults.
It has very low or negligible side effects. Moreover, Albendazole is easy to administer because Albendazole requires only single-dose administration.
How much albendazole tablet dose for a child for deworming?
Albendazole is available in the form of tablets and syrup. You may give either tablet or syrup (suspension) to your child as per their feasibility. It comes in the market with a brand name of
Albendazole dose for child
1. Albendazole dose for infants (less than 1 year)
Albendazole is usually not recommended in infants (less than 1 year) because we don’t have enough safety data in this age group.
2. Albendazole dose for 1 to 2-year child
According to WHO, the albendazole 200 mg dose is recommended for children in age group 1-2 years.
A single dose is sufficient to treat worm infestations.
If the symptoms are not subsided, then the same dose can be repeated after 2 weeks.
3. Albendazole dose for above 2 years child
If your child’s age is more than 2 years, like pre-schoolers (2-5 years), school-aged children (6-12 years), and teenagers (>12 years). Then albendazole 400 mg single dose is sufficient for treating worm infestations.
If the condition is not controlled well, then the same dose can be repeated after 2 weeks.
In 2006, a randomized controlled trial was conducted in Uganda associated with deworming with increased weight gain after taking the standard dose of Albendazole 400 mg in preschool children over three consecutive years.
Albendazole dose for adults and older
Albendazole 400 mg is the standard dose, and a single dose is quite enough for deworming. It can be given in any age group, either adult or older.
What to do if pinworms keep coming back?
Suppose your kids are not getting a response from Albendazole even after administering the second dose. In that case, your doctor may give you ivermectin medicine with Albendazole.
Ivermectin paralyzes or kills the worms and expels them through stool. It is a potent anthelmintic agent that helps kill and clear your intestinal worms.
The combination of ivermectin and Albendazole is usually prescribed in recurrent or repeated worm infestation. The combination of these drugs is available in the market with common brands –
- Noworm plus
- Bandy plus
- Bendex plus
- Ivoral forte
A single dose of ivermectin is enough, and the dose can be repeated if the worm load is very high.
It is a safe and effective combination. Even a study published in The Lancet, 2021, has proven the high efficacy of co-administered ivermectin-albendazole over monotherapy of Albendazole.
What would be the exact albendazole syrup dose for children?
Albendazole medicine usually comes in a suspension dosage form.
These dosage forms contain the suspended particles of the albendazole drug in a 10 ml bottle. Whereas, Albendazole particles are completely dissolved in syrup preparation.
So, we are generally required to shake the albendazole suspension bottle before use.
To avoid confusion, people sometimes called it syrup.
The entire 10 ml bottle of albendazole contains 400 mg. It means each 5ml of albendazole suspension contains 200 mg of albendazole drug.
The amount and strength of albendazole syrup (or suspension) for a child are based on their weight (15 mg/kg).
Assume your child is 1–2 years old and weighs between 10 and 12 kilograms. To calculate albendazole dosage, we would need (15 x 10 to 12) 150 to 180 mg.
But it is generally considered 200 mg albendazole standard dose for less than 2 years children. In this case, the albendazole syrup dose for 1 to 2-year-old children will be 5 ml.
But if the child is older than 2 years, you’ll have to give them a full bottle (10 ml) of albendazole syrup.
For example –
|Age groups||Albendazole dose in mg||Albendazole dose in ml|
Albendazole syrup dose for 3 year old child
|400 mg||Entire 10 ml bottle|
|Albendazole syrup dose for 4 year old child|
|400 mg||Entire 10 ml bottle|
|Albendazole syrup dose for 5 year old|
|400 mg||Entire 10 ml bottle|
|Albendazole syrup dose for 6 year old||400 mg||Entire 10 ml bottle|
|Albendazole syrup dose for 7 year-old|
|400 mg||Entire 10 ml bottle|
Albendazole oral suspension comes in different brand names such as Zentel, Abendol, Bandy, Bendex, Noworm, ABZ, etc. Among these, Zentel and Bandy are the most popular brand in India.
Should albendazole be taken before or after meals for deworming?
It depends on the type of worm infestation you have –
For intestinal worms before the meal
Suppose you have intestinal worms. In this case, you should take the Albendazole drug on an empty stomach because you don’t require the medication inside your blood.
If you take an albendazole empty stomach, it will stay longer in your intestine and work effectively. After the administration of one hour, you can have your meal.
For systemic worms after the meals
If you have parasitic worms in your blood or tissue, such as dog tapeworm, pork tapeworm, etc. Then, you will require albendazole in your blood.
Generally, albendazole gets rapidly absorbed in your blood with food.
It is always better to take albendazole with a fatty meal (high-fat content) like milk, paneer, cheese, etc. The absorption of the albendazole drug increases five times more if you take albendazole with fatty meal.
We have discussed about albendazole medication and the correct albendazole dose for kids in different age group in infants, toddlers/preschool aged children, school aged children, etc.
Albendazole is a well-tolerated and highly effective anthelmintic drug in children and adults too.
It is an absolutely safe drug as Albendazole has minimum side effects.
The biggest advantage of the albendazole drug is single-dose administration because a single dose is sufficient for its effectiveness. So, there is no need to repeat the medicine.
It is only an informative article. So, you should take this medicine under proper medical supervision because Albendazole is a schedule H drug (or prescription drug).
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Q 1. Can I take Paracetamol and albendazole together?
There is no such interaction between paracetamol and Albendazole. So, you may take these drugs together by consulting with your doctor.
Q 2. Is it safe to take Albendazole during pregnancy?
Albendazole has shown embryotoxicity in animal studies. So, it should be avoided in pregnancy.
Q 3. Which is better albendazole or mebendazole?
Both drugs are well-tolerated and effective. But in many studies, Albendazole has shown more effectiveness than mebendazole.