Diflucan for Infants

This page give information on Diflucan for infants including dosage, indications and side effects. Diflucan is a brand name for the drug, Fluconazole.

This page answers the following questions:

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What is Diflucan?

Diflucan is a trade name for a drug called Fluconazole. Fluconazole is an anti-fungal agent, so it works against infections caused by fungi.

Other trade names for Fluconazole are Canesten Oral - the information on this page applies equally to that drug.

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What fungal infections do children get?

The most usual fungal infection infants get is thrush - read more. Thrush is a candida infection (actually candida albicans). Candida is a yeast but has similar properties to fungi so the treatment is the same. Infection with candida involving the mouth or diaper (nappy) area is very common in babies.

Older children can also get ringworm, which is a fungal infection with tinea. On the head, it is called tinea capitis and on the body it is tinea corporis.

Fluconazole can be used for candida (thrush) and tinea capitis (ringworm on the scalp) infections in infants and children.

Oral thrush is the most common reason to use Diflucan for infants.

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What is the Diflucan Infants Dosage?

For oral thrush (oral candidiasis): The dose of Fluconazole is 6 mg/kg/day for the first dose and then 3 mg/kg/day for further doses. The whole course should last at least 7 days and can be given for up to 2 weeks.

A 3.5 kg (about 7 1/2 pounds - 8 pounds) baby would need about 20 mg as the first dose (given just once in the day) and for the next 6-13 days would need 10 mg a day (given just once).

The Diflucan oral solution comes as 40mg/ml so 20 mg is 0.5 ml and 10 mg is 0.25 ml.

There are also 50mg/5ml solutions of Fluconazole - 20 mg of this would be 2 ml and 10 mg would be 1 ml.

Make sure you check the strength of the solution when using Diflucan for infants.

For Tinea Capitis (ringworm on the head): the dose is 3-6 mg/kg/day (given in one dose per day) and needs to be given for 6 weeks.

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What are the side effects of Diflucan?

Fluconazole is relatively safe in infants and older children so most don't have side effects.

The most common side effects of Diflucan (Fluconazole) you might see in your infant or child are:

  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • rash

The most serious side effects are:

  • liver problems - see your doctor if you baby or child looks yellow, has pale stools (poop, poo) or dark urine after taking Fluconazole.
  • infection due to low white count - see your doctor if your child becomes unwell after starting Fluconazole, especially if he has a fever
  • heart rhythm problems - see your doctor if your child has pale or blue episodes or you are aware of an abnormal heart beat

Fluconazole should be given with caution to children with liver and kidney problems and to anyone who has a heart condition.

Fluconazole can interact with other drugs so if your infant or child is taking any other medication, speak to your doctor first.

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References

  • RCPCH. Medicines for Children. 2003
  • Epocrates: www.epocrates.com

To go to the top of the Diflucan for Infants page, click here

To go to the Baby Thrush page, click here

To go to the Medications page, click here

To return to the Home page, click here


Last reviewed 28 May 2011

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Dr Maud MD

Dr Maud MD (MBChB, FRACP, FRCPCH), a specialist pediatrician, provides health information and medical advice for parents of babies and toddlers. Read more about Dr Maud.



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