Compare Relenza vs. rimantadine

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

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Relenza (zanamivir)

Prescription only

Flumadine (rimantadine)

Prescription only
Prevents and reduces the symptoms of the flu.

Relenza (zanamivir) can reduce flu symptoms for people 7 years & older, but they should take it within two days of the flu starting or it won't work.

Treats and prevents type A influenza.

Flumadine (rimantadine) is effective at preventing or treating certain types of flus, but it is not a substitute for the annual flu shot.

Upsides
  • Relenza (zanamivir) is a great choice for people you don't like swallowing pills.
  • Available as a generic.
  • Flumadine (rimantadine) comes in two forms, tablet and liquid.
  • Flumadine (rimantadine) is often used to treat Parkinson's disease.
Downsides
  • Start Relenza (zanamivir) within 2 days of getting the flu or else the medicine won't work.
  • Taking Relenza (zanamivir) won't stop you from being contagious.
  • Relenza (zanamivir) is inhaled so people with breathing problems shouldn't take it.
  • Not recommended for people with kidney problems.
  • Flumadine (rimantadine) must be taken within 2 days of flu symptoms starting in order to be effective.
  • Flumadine (rimantadine) is not recommended as the first option to treat influenza as many virus strains are resistant to it.
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Used for
  • Flu prevention
  • Flu treatment
  • Flu virus type A
  • Flu virus type A prevention
Dosage forms
  • Inhaler
  • Pill
  • Suspension
Price
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Reviews
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Side effects
9possible side effects
  • Diarrhea
    3%
  • Nausea
    3%
  • Sinus infection
    3%
  • Headaches
    2%
  • Nasal symptoms
    2%
  • Bronchitis
    2%
  • Cough
    2%
  • Sore throat
    2%
  • Dizziness
    2%
See more detailed side effects
3possible side effects
  • Insomnia
    3%
  • Nervousness
    2%
  • Impaired concentration
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Nasal flu vaccine won't work
    • Had nasal flu vaccine within last two weeks
  • Unusual behavior
  • Breathing problems
    • Asthma
    • COPD
  • Severe allergic reactions
    • Prior severe allergic reaction to Relenza (zanamivir)
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Reaction with vaccines
  • Seizures
    • History of epilepsy
    • Use of amantadine
  • Liver and kidney problems
    • Liver problems
    • Kidney problems
  • Drug resistance
    • People at high risk for type A flu
See more detailed risks and warnings