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Amantadine (Symmetrel)

Other names: Lysovir

Amantadine is a drug used in the treatment of fatigue in multiple sclerosis. Medication is not a solution to fatigue on its own and when used is one element of a wider fatigue management approach.

How do I take amantadine?

Amantadine is taken by mouth (orally) as tablets.

What side effects could I get with amantadine?

Amantadine is generally well tolerated with mild side effects. Side effects can include constipation, nausea, anxiety and hyperactivity. If you take amantadine within a few hour of going to bed it couldĀ lead to difficulty sleeping or vivid dreams. To avoid this, you should take amantadine no later than 2pm.

How does amantadine work?

Amantadine is an antiviral drug, used to treat influenza infections. It is also used to treat Parkinson's disease. Why it is effective for fatigue in some people with MS remains unknown.

Amantadine research

Studies have found that amantadine reduced fatigue in between one and two people in five with mild to moderate MS.

Last updated: May 2018
Last reviewed: April 2016
This page will be reviewed within three years

More references

  • Pucci E, et al. Amantadine for fatigue in multiple sclerosis. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007;(1):CD002818. Read the full article

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