Serc tablets contain the active ingredient betahistine, which is a medicine that closely resembles the natural substance histamine. Betahistine is also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine. Betahistine is used to relieve the symptoms of Ménière's disease, which is a disorder of the inner ear.
What is it used for?
- Relieving vertigo, tinnitus and hearing problems associated with Ménière's disease.
How does it work?
- Serc tablets contain the active ingredient betahistine, which is a medicine that closely resembles the natural substance histamine. Betahistine is also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine. Betahistine is used to relieve the symptoms of Ménière's disease, which is a disorder of the inner ear.
- The fluid in the ear (found in a structure called the labyrinth) provides continual feedback to the brain about our body position. When something disturbs the balance of this fluid, for example an increase in its pressure, this can cause sensations such as nausea, dizziness or spinning sensations (vertigo), ringing or buzzing in the ears (tinnitus) and hearing problems.
How do I take it?
- Betahistine is usually taken three times a day. The dose prescribed varies from person to person and you should follow the instructions given by your doctor. These will also be printed on the dispensing label that your pharmacist has put on the packet of medicine.
- The tablets should preferably be taken with or just after meals.
- Keep taking the medicine regularly for as long as your doctor has prescribed it.
- If you forget to take a dose don't worry, just leave out the missed dose and take your next dose as usual when it is due. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed dose.
Not to be used in
- Children and adolescents under 18 years of age.
- People with a tumour of the adrenal glands (phaeochromocytoma).
- This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to one or any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.
If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
Use with caution in
- People who have ever had a peptic ulcer.
- People who suffer from asthma.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.
- The safety of this medicine for use during pregnancy has not been established. It should not be used during pregnancy unless considered essential by your doctor and only if the benefits to the mother outweigh any risks to the developing baby. Seek further medical advice from your doctor.
- It is not known if this medicine passes into breast milk. It should only be used by women who are breastfeeding if the benefits outweigh any potential risks to the nursing infant. Seek further medical advice from your doctor.
- Feeling sick.
Frequency not known
- Mild disturbances of the gut such as vomiting, abdominal pain or bloating. Digestive side effects can usually be avoided by taking the medicine during a meal. However, if this does not help these symptoms you should tell your doctor as they can also be improved by lowering the dose.
- Skin reactions such as rash, hives or itching.
- Allergic reactions such as swelling of the face, throat and tongue (angioedema).
The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the medicine's manufacturer. For more information about any other possible risks associated with this medicine, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.
How can this medicine affect other medicines?
- As betahistine is an analogue of histamine, antihistamines (used for allergies) such as cetirizine or loratadine, could theoretically make this medicine less effective.