Compare chloroquine vs. methotrexate

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

chloroquine

Prescription only

Otrexup (methotrexate)

Prescription only
Prevents and treats malaria, and also treats a type of bowel infection.

Effectively prevents and treats malaria, and treats a certain type of intestinal infection but can cause serious side effects in certain people.

Reduces inflammation and cell replication.

Otrexup (methotrexate) is the first-choice treatment for many types of cancer and arthritis, but it has many side effects.

Upsides
  • chloroquine is generally safe to use during pregnancy and for children.
  • You can take chloroquine with or without food.
  • Otrexup (methotrexate) is available as an affordable generic form.
  • Otrexup (methotrexate) comes as a tablet, an injection that you give yourself, or an infusion that you get in the doctor's office or infusion center.
Downsides
  • chloroquine needs to be taken 1-2 weeks before traveling to an area with malaria, compared to some alternatives that can be taken 1-2 days before.
  • chloroquine is only effective against malaria from certain areas of the world.
  • chloroquine may worsen psoriasis, seizures, hearing problems, and liver conditions.
  • You may need frequent blood tests for monitoring when taking Otrexup (methotrexate).
  • Otrexup (methotrexate) can cause serious birth defects so women should avoid getting pregnant for at least 6 month and men 3 months after taking it.
  • While on Otrexup (methotrexate), you should avoid alcohol and staying out in the sun for too long.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Pill
  • Injection
  • Liquid
Price
No pricing information available
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Reviews
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Side effects
The chloroquine FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
The Otrexup (methotrexate) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Heart problems
    • Heart problems
  • Muscle weakness
    • Long-term use
  • Low blood counts
    • G6PD (glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase) deficiency
  • Eye injury
    • Taking high dose of chloroquine
    • Long-term use
    • Taking tamoxifen
    • Low body weight
    • Kidney problems
  • Liver damage
    • Taking other drugs that affect the liver
    • Alcoholism
    • Liver conditions
  • Hearing damage
    • History of hearing problems
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Bone marrow suppression
  • Worsening side-effects
    • Reduced kidney function
    • fluid in the abdomen
    • fluid in the lungs
  • Use of NSAIDs
    • NSAIDS
    • High dose of methotrexate
  • Liver problems
    • Long-term use
    • Psoriasis
  • Lung problems
  • Diarrhea and mouth sores
    • Taking Otrexup (methotrexate) with high-dose NSAIDs
  • Tumor lysis syndrome
    • Rapidly growing tumors
  • Skin reactions
  • Infections
  • White blood cell cancer
  • Skin and bone tissue deterioration
    • Radiotherapy
See more detailed risks and warnings