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Homebreast cancervarenicline (Chantix): Quit Smoking Medication Side Effects & Dosage

varenicline (Chantix): Quit Smoking Medication Side Effects & Dosage

What is varenicline (Chantix)? What is Chantix used for?

Varenicline is an oral drug that is used to promote cessation of smoking. It competes with nicotine from cigarettes for binding to nicotine receptors in the brain. Although varenicline stimulates nicotine receptors like nicotine, it blocks the stronger stimulation by nicotine. Therefore, smokers do not experience the full effect of smoking while taking varenicline. The FDA approved varenicline in May 2006.

What brand names are available for varenicline (Chantix)?


Is varenicline (Chantix) available as a generic drug?


Do I need a prescription for varenicline, Chantix?


Quit Smoking Now!

Exposure to Secondhand Smoke May Lower Children’s IQ

Medical Author Melissa Stöppler, M.D.
Medical Editor: William C. Shiel,

A study shows that children who are exposed to
tobacco smokein the home
may have lower IQs than their unexposed peers.

Despite mounting evidence about the perils of secondhand tobacco smoke exposure in children, 40% of children in the United States are routinely exposed to
secondhand smoke, termed environmental tobacco smoke(ETS), in their own homes.
ETS has already been definitively linked to a number of medical problems in
children, including sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS),colic, middle ear disease, worsening
of asthmasymptoms, and other respiratory problems. Research
has also begun to suggest that ETS may be neurotoxic, or damaging to the
nervous system, with potential effects on the development of intellect and reasoning
skills in children.

Read more about the dangers of secondhand smoke »

What are the side effects of varenicline (Chantix)?

The most common adverse effects of varenicline are:

abnormal dreams and taste disturbance also are frequent side effects of varenicline. Varenicline is not addictive and is not a controlled substance;
however, some patients may experience irritability and sleep disturbance if
varenicline is abruptly discontinued. Varenicline may worsen symptoms of
underlying heart disease. Patients may experience psychiatric symptoms such as
behavioral changes, agitation, depressed mood, and
suicidal behavior during varenicline treatment. Patients should stop taking varenicline if psychiatric
symptoms occur. Rare life threatening skin reactions and hypersensitivity
reactions have been reported.


What is the average weight gain for those who quit smoking?
See Answer

What is the dosage for varenicline (Chantix)?

The recommended dose is 0.5 mg daily for 3 days followed by
0.5 mg twice daily for 4 days, then 1 mg twice daily for the remainder of the
treatment period. Duration of therapy is 12 weeks. If treatment is successful,
an additional 12 weeks is recommended to increase the chance of long-term
abstinence. Those who do not respond or return to smoking after treatment should
be encouraged to try again.

Which drugs or supplements interact with varenicline (Chantix)?

Administering varenicline with the nicotine patch
may lead to additional adverse effects.

Is varenicline (Chantix) safe to take if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?

There are no adequate studies in
pregnant women.

It is not known whether varenicline is excreted in
breast milk. Nursing mothers should consider discontinuing varenicline or
breastfeeding because of the potential for adverse effects in the infant.

What else should I know about varenicline (Chantix)?

What preparations of varenicline (Chantix) are available?

Capsules: 0.5 and 0.1 mg

How should I keep varenicline (Chantix) stored?

Varenicline should be stored at room temperature, 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).


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