Table 1

Old and new influenza drugs

Name (major brand)

Effective against

Recommended dose

Use status; adverse drug reactions


Amantadine [43]

(Symadine, Symmetrel) [43]

Influenza A

Capsule/tablet, syrup; 100 mg amantadine hydrochloride, twice a day.

Mostly discontinued due to resistance; may be recalled in future epidemics.

Oseltamivir (Tamiflu) [48,49]

Influenza A, B

Capsule (30, 45, 75 mg) twice a day; powder for suspension (6 mg/mL).

Currently in use. Transient nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, headache, neuropsychiatric episodes.

Zanamivir (Relenza) [36]

Influenza A, B

Two inhalations (5 or 10 mg each).

Currently in use. Relatively rare adverse drug reactions include nausea, diarrhea, respiratory problems, dizziness.

Laninamivir [50,51]

Influenza A, B (for example, H1N1, H3N2)

Single inhalation (20 or 40 mg).

Similar to oseltamivir. Approved in Japan, but not yet in the US.

Peramivir [52]

Similar to Laninamivir

Intravenous 600 mg once, or 300 mg twice, 5 to 10 days.

Transient nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea (similar to oseltamivir). Approved in Japan and Korea.


Some information was obtained from manufacturers' inserts and/or websites.

Barik BMC Medicine 2012 10:104   doi:10.1186/1741-7015-10-104

Open Data