Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to Plaquenil: methotrexate, Lupus


trademark for a preparation of hydroxychloroquine, an antiinflammatory and antiprotozoal agent used for treatment of malaria, lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, and giardiasis.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.

hydroxychloroquine sulfate

Apo-Hydroxychloroquine (CA), Gen-Hydroxychloroquine (CA), Plaquenil

Pharmacologic class: 4-aminoquinolone

Therapeutic class: Antimalarial, antirheumatic, anti-inflammatory (disease-modifying)

Pregnancy risk category C

FDA Box Warning

• Familiarize yourself completely with contents of the manufacturer's package insert before administering or prescribing this drug.


Unknown. Thought to interfere with inhibition of protein synthesis and DNA replication, leading to parasitic death.


Tablets: 200 mg (155 mg base); 200 mg hydroxychloroquine sulfate is equivalent to 155 mg of hydroxychloroquine base

Indications and dosages

Malaria prophylaxis (dosages expressed as mg of base)

Adults: 310 mg P.O. q week, starting 1 to 2 weeks before entering endemic area and continuing for 4 weeks after leaving area

Children: 5 mg/kg P.O. q week, starting 1 to 2 weeks before entering endemic area and continuing for 4 weeks after leaving area

Acute malarial attack (dosages expressed as mg of base)

Adults: Initially, 620 mg P.O., then 310 mg 6 hours, 24 hours, and 48 hours later

Children: Initially, 10 mg/kg P.O., then 5 mg/kg 6 hours, 24 hours, and 48 hours later

Rheumatoid arthritis

Adults: 400 to 600 mg/day P.O. for 4 to 12 weeks, then reduced by 50%

Systemic lupus erythematosus

Adults: 400 mg P.O. once or twice daily for several months, then reduced to 200 to 400 mg daily, depending on response


• Hypersensitivity to drug or chloroquine

• Retinal or visual field changes

• Long-term therapy in children


Use cautiously in:

• hepatic or renal impairment, G6PD deficiency, psoriasis, bone marrow depression, alcoholism

• obese patients

• pregnant or breastfeeding patients

• children.


• Give with food or milk.

• For malaria prophylaxis, schedule doses on same day each week.

Adverse reactions

CNS: anxiety, apathy, confusion, fatigue, headache, psychoses, mood swings, irritability, neuromyopathy, peripheral neuritis, seizures

CV: ECG changes, hypotension

EENT: visual disturbances, retinopathy, keratopathy, ototoxicity, tinnitus

GI: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, anorexia

Hematologic: leukopenia, agranulocytosis, aplastic anemia, thrombocytopenia

Hepatic: jaundice, hepatotoxicity

Musculoskeletal: muscle weakness

Skin: dermatoses, rash, pruritus, pigmentation changes, pleomorphic skin eruption, worsened psoriasis, alopecia, bleaching of hair

Other: weight loss


Drug-diagnostic tests. Granulocytes, hemoglobin, platelets: decreased values

Drug-behaviors. Sun exposure: exacerbation of drug-induced dermatoses

Patient monitoring

Monitor for signs and symptoms of overdose, such as nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, visual disturbances, cardiovascular collapse, and seizures.

• Watch for adverse reactions.

Patient teaching

• Advise patient to take with food or milk.

Instruct patient to immediately report such adverse reactions as vision changes, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, mental changes, mood swings, headache, ringing in ears, muscle weakness, rash, bleeding, bruising, and yellowing of skin and eyes.

• In long-term therapy, advise patient to have regular eye exams.

• As appropriate, review all other significant and life-threatening adverse reactions and interactions, especially those related to the drugs, tests, and behaviors mentioned above.

McGraw-Hill Nurse's Drug Handbook, 7th Ed. Copyright © 2013 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved


A trademark for the drug hydroxychloroquine sulfate.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

Plaquenil ®

Hydroxychloroquine sulfate, see there.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Although the patient was taking naproxen, Plaquenil and gold injection, the disease continued to progress.
If the decision had been mine alone, I might have chosen Plaquenil because it would involve less monitoring and no injections, and, over time, it would be less expensive.
These more specific disease-modifying medications include such agents as Plaquenil, Azulfidine, and gold.
She made the switch from 75 mg/day of mepacrine to 100 mg/day of Plaquenil. The yellowing decreased substantially.
Plaquenil 400 mg/day and certolizumab pegol were initiated 2 and 6 weeks following diagnosis, respectively.
The average duration of RA among all participants was 17 years, and 58 percent of the participants were taking a disease-modifying antirheumatic drug, such as methotrexate, sulfasalazine (Azulfidine), and hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil).
However, up to half of CLE patients are refractory to the first-line therapy, hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil), and treatment options for this CLE subgroup are understudied.
Hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil) often effectively addresses the inflammatory component of the erosive subtype of OA.
Common DMARDs include: methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall), sulfasalazine (Azulfidine), hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil), leflunomide (Arava), cyclosporine (Sandimmune, Neoral), and azathioprine (Imuran, Azasan).
Plaquenil 200 mg twice daily and prednisone 4 mg daily were prescribed.
The drugs--including Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine), Cuprimine (penicillamine), Remicade (infliximab) and Azulfidine (sulfasalazine) --can be used singularly or in combination.
Key: SLE = Systemic lupus erythematosus Generic Name Trade Name Indication Toxic retinopathy Plaquenil Hydroxychloroquine Rheumatoid arthritis, SLE Tamoxyfen Nolvadex Breast cancer Vigabatrin Sabril Epilepsy anti-convulsant Chlorpromazine Largactil Anti-psychotic Desferrioxamine Desferal Anaemia Toxic optic neuropathy Ethambutol Isoniazid Rifina- Tuberculosis treatment Generic Name Visual side effect Toxic retinopathy Plaquenil Bull's eye maculopathy - blurred vision, altered colour Tamoxyfen Crystalline maculopathy - vision impaired if severe Vigabatrin Field restriction Chlorpromazine Blurred vision, abnormal colour (brownish tinge) Desferrioxamine Acuity reduction, scotomata, photopsia, metamorphopsia Toxic optic neuropathy Ethambutol Isoniazid Acuity and field loss, colourdefect-