I have written this page to give average people a good idea of what Tamiflu is, how it works and what to look out for when somebody prescribes it for you.
After you read this page, you should have a good idea of what to
expect before you take any Tamiflu pills - how much is costs, how
to dose it, common side effects, what to look out for.
- Corey Nahman, Registered Pharmacist; New York State License
Click Here To automatically search for recent Tamiflu Newspape
& Magazine Articles This link searches thousands of news
reports and websites regarding Tamiflu; this is how
government officials and journalists get up to date information
on Tamiflu .
Tamiflu's Mechanism Of Action
(in other words, how exactly does it work?)
Viruses can not thrive or reproduce by themselves - they use
the living cells of their host to do all the work they tricks the host cell's DNA into being a virus factory.
Tamiflu interferes with the flu viral reproduction. Tamiflu works by inhibiting an enzyme called neuraminidase".
When neuraminidase is blocked from working, the flu virus has a hard time releasing it's babies into your bloodstream. The less flu viruses circulating in your system, the better you feel.
Tamiflu's Side Effects / Adverse Reactions
The most common side effects of Tamiflu are nausea, vomiting
and diarrhea. Sometimes people report getting headaches
when they take Tamiflu.
In 2005, Japanese media released reports that young
people taking Tamiflu exhibited abnormal behavior. It was
reported that Tamiflu was linked to 64 cases of psychological
disorders and 2 teenage suicides
After the Japanese reports, the FDA conducted a review of data
regarding pediatric use of Tamiflu. The FDA gave Tamiflu a clean
bill of health. FDA was "unable to conclude that there is a causal
relationship between Tamiflu and the reported pediatric deaths".
Buying Tamiflu On The Internet? Think Twice!
Stay away from internet Tamiflu vendors unless they are located in the USA, have a physical address you can verify and employ American doctors and pharmacists. There are many people looking to make a quick dollar by selling counterfeit Tamiflu.
(How many milligrams are in the pills, can you get it in a syrup
for little kids?)
Kids as young as 1 years old can take Tamiflu safely. Tamiflu
capsules are colored gray and light yellow.
The word "Roche" is printed in blue on the gray side of the capsule
and "75mg" is printed in blue on the yellow part of the capsule.
Tamiflu is only available as 75mg capsules or as a clear
tutti-frutti flavored liquid syrup version for kids.
The dose of Tamiflu (for grownups) is one 75mg capsule twice
a day for five days.
The dosage for kids varies from 30mg twice daily to 75mg twice
daily depending on their weight. (Children that weigh more than
88lbs take the adult dose of 75mg per day).
Every Tamiflu prescription must contain 10 doses. Sometimes people don't take all 10 pills - this is not good. If you do this, the
medicine may not work well. Your illness could come back.
You must not skip any doses if you expect it to work. Even if
you feel better, you must take all 10 doses regardless.
You need to begin taking it within 40 hours of catching the flu or
it may not work.
There is no such thing as generic Tamiflu. Tamiflu is difficult to
manufacture. It takes 10 steps over six to eight months to
manufacture Tamiflu. Therefore, if you see so-called generic
Tamiflu or herbal Tamiflu offered for sale it is most likely
counterfeit, containing no active ingredient.
Tamiflu is expensive. If you buy Tamiflu from a reputable
drugstore, you can expect to pay about $10 per pill. You
will need to buy 10 pills (a 5-day supply) for each course of
The Problem With Tamiflu:
Tamiflu's label indicates that if you took it as directed (within
40 hours of the onset of flu symptoms, 2 pills a day for 5 days)
you would get a 1.3 day reduction in median time to
improvement. A similar study in kids showed only a 1.5 day
reduction in illness.
Tamiflu is only good for flu - not for colds.
Often, by the time a patient gets to a doctor and determines
whether she has a cold or the flu, it is too late for the Tamiflu
to do much good.
Lets say that you wake up Monday and you think that you have
a really bad cold - so you stay home from work.
By Tuesday night you still don't feel better so you visit your doctor
first thing Wednesday Morning. By that point (48 hours into your
illness) it is too late for the Tamiflu to do any good.
You could buy some for your husband and 2 children just in case
they caught some of your flu germs but you may be reluctant to
shell out $240.00 for pills that you may or may not need - pills
are not returnable once they leave the drugstore.
History of Tamiflu
When Tamiflu first came out it had disappointing sales. People
were expecting a magic pill that would make flu go away quick.
But they soon found out that Tamiflu only reduced the duration
of flu by 36 hours if you took it within 40 hours of catching the flu.
Tamiflu was a huge flop for Roche; they couldn't give Tamiflu
away. It was a dead canary.
The inventor of Tamiflu, Gilead Sciences, was highly annoyed at
Roche. They accused Roche of halfheartedly marketing Tamiflu.
Tamiflu Becomes A Hit
Once word got out that they were using Tamiflu as a treatment
for Bird Flu, sales took off like crazy! Tamiflu became a household name; valuable as gold. Now that Swine flu is sweeping the globe, Tamiflu is once again a valuable commodity.
Tamiflu's popularity soars with each new media report that
Tamiflu is effective to treat the deadly swine flu.
Current Tamiflu supply chain situation is similar to what happened in 2005 when bird-flu was in the news.
People started hoarding Tamiflu. By Autumn of 2005, Tamiflu
shortages erupted. Roche stopped shipping Tamiflu to certain
countries such as Canada for fear that there wouldn't be enough
Tamiflu to go around in places where there may be a genuine need for it in Bird Flu hotspots like Vietnam and China.
A similar phenomenon is occurring now. Experts are predicting Tamiflu shortages due to fearful buying and hoarding.
The question is if Tamiflu is a fad or if it is truly an effective part of an anti-flu pandemic arsenal.
At the present time, Tamiflu appears to be effective in combating swine flu. It seems to work but only if started within 48 hours of first symptoms
Experts fear that if it is overused or used improperly, resistant strains of swine flu will appear.
Wait A Minute
Unfortunately, many scientists and public health experts have
doubts that Tamiflu is very effective in the case of a genuine
Bird Flu pandemic.
In fact, the virus that causes Bird Flu is rapidly becoming
resistant to Tamiflu. What will happen with swine flu is anybody's guess.
Doctors use Tamiflu to treat bird flu because that is all they have, not because it cures flu rapidly. But when people get panicky they reach for the best thing available, which at this point is Tamiflu.
Tamiflu makes it difficult for the newborn flu virus
to escape the host cell's membrane by blocking the
When you come into contact with the flu virus (most often from hand-to-hand contact) it is introduced into your bloodstream.
Before you know it, the virus has spread throughout your entire
body - and the replication process begins using your own cells
The virus attaches to the cell membrane of your body's cells and
injects itself into the nucleus of the cell, tricking your DNA to
make clone after clone of the virus.
As soon as it's born, each new daughter virus gets to work
reproducing itself; it starts the process all over again.
Tamiflu Internet Resources:
Tamiflu.com This is the official Tamiflu website. It is
maintained by Roche Laboratories, the large Swiss drug company
that markets Tamiflu.
Tamiflu prescribing information. This is the same exact
information that your doctor and pharmacist reads to
learn about Tamiflu and how to prescribe it. The prescribing
information also contains information regarding Tamiflu's
mechanism of action, its side effects and drug interactions,
pharmacokinetics (the rate at which it enters the blood and
tissues), its effect on the liver, kidney and other vital organs.
FDA Tamiflu Information Database; this is a database of recent communiqués from the FDA concerning Tamiflu.
Tamiflu Price Comparison listing of websites that sell Tamiflu
over the internet.
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