It can decrease the pain and swelling of arthritis. It may prevent joint damage and reduce the risk of long-term disability. Plaquenil and shingles vaccine Plaquenil memory loss Chloroquine CQ and hydroxychloroquine Plaquenil HCQ have been used for many years, initially for the treatment of malaria but now more commonly for the treatment of inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus 1. It is now considered for new disease applications in diabetes, heart disease and adjunct cancer therapies 2. Note This document contains side effect information about hydroxychloroquine. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Plaquenil. For the Consumer. Applies to hydroxychloroquine oral tablet. Along with its needed effects, hydroxychloroquine the active ingredient contained in Plaquenil may cause some unwanted effects. Plaquenil has important but uncommon side effects that may affect your eye. Today, it is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, some symptoms of lupus, childhood arthritis (or juvenile idiopathic arthritis) and other autoimmune diseases. Hydroxychloroquine is in a class of medications that was first used to prevent and treat malaria. Plaquenil vision Plaquenil Oral Uses, Side Effects, Interactions., Plaquenil Side Effects Common, Severe, Long Term - Chloroquine proguanil Vision changes/loss of vision There is a chance that retinal damage will occur while taking hydroxychloroquine Plaquenil or chloroquine Aralen. This is called known as hydroxychloroquine retinopathy. This sort of damage occurs only in 1 out of 5,000 people who take the drug for five years or more. Plaquenil What You Need to Know - Kaleidoscope Fighting Lupus. Plaquenil & Your Eyes. Hydroxychloroquine Side Effects, Dosage, Uses, and More. In rare cases, hydroxychloroquine can cause visual changes or loss of vision. Such vision problems are more likely to occur in individuals taking high doses for many years, individuals 60 years or older, or those with significant kidney disease. At the recommended dose, development of visual problems due to the medication is rare. If you are using Plaquenil, The Wellish Vision Institute recommends regular eye exams to help catch any change that may be subtly occurring. Symptoms of retinopathy to be aware of are blind spots in your central vision, distortion of objects, blurring, light flashes and sensitivity, as well as colors becoming distorted and difficulty seeing at night. The American Academy of Ophthalmology released an updated set of screening recommendations for hydroxychloroquine Plaquenil and chloroquine to account for the many studies that have shown the effects of these medications on the retina 1.