Terbinafine (hydrochloride)

Terbinafine is an antifungal agent that treats fungal infections like athlete’s foot and ringworm.

Pronunciation: TER-bin-a-feen

What are terbinafine’s uses?

Terbinafine hydrochloride’s uses include treating ringworm of the scalp and groin area, fungal disease of the toenails and fingernails, athlete’s foot and chronic fungal infection of the skin.

It works by stopping the growth of fungus and belongs to the antifungal class of drugs.

It is applied to the skin as a cream.

What dosage should you take?

Dosage and length of treatment is based on your medical condition and response to treatment, so discuss this with your Clicks pharmacist.

What special precautions should you take?

  • Don’t use terbinafine in pregnancy or if you plan to become pregnant
  • Avoid while breastfeeding as it may pass into breast milk
  • Don’t drink alcohol when using it
  • Use full course of treatment and don’t skip doses
  • Avoid coffee, tea, cola, energy drinks or other sources of caffeine while taking this medication
  • Avoid exposure to sunlight or tanning beds as terbinafine can make you sunburn more easily.

Terbinafine should be used with caution if you suffer from the following conditions:

  • Have a history of kidney or liver problems, lupus, depression, psoriasis, alcohol abuse or dependence, or blood problems (for example, anaemia)
  • Have a weakened immune system

Terbinafine should be avoided if you suffer from liver problems.

What drug interactions could you experience?

As a rule, always inform your doctor or Clicks pharmacist what prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements and herbal products you are taking or planning to take to ensure you don’t suffer the effects of adverse drug interactions.

What are terbinafine’s side effects?

Side effects could include:

  • Diarrhoea
  • Upset stomach
  • Upper abdominal pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dark-coloured urine
  • Dark-coloured stool
  • Stomach pain
  • Rash
  • Itching
  • Hives
  • Changes in taste or loss of taste

This is not a complete list of side effects. It’s essential that you call your doctor should you notice any severe or odd side effects.

What are the overdose symptoms?

Call a doctor or the ambulance immediately if you notice the following symptoms:

  • Dizziness
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Skin rash
  • Frequent urination
The accuracy of this information was checked and approved by Clicks' pharmacist Waheed Abdurahman in August 2015