Azulfidine EN (Sulfasalazine)
Azulfidine (Sulfasalazine) Dosage and Side Effects
AZULFIDINE is used to treat symptoms of ulcerative colitis (a condition where the bowel is inflamed). The medicine is sometimes used to help symptoms of Crohn's disease (another type of inflammatory bowel disease). The delayed-release form of AZULFIDINE (AZULFIDINE EN-tabs) is also used to treat rheumatoid arthritis.
AZULFIDINE is in a class of medicines known as anti-inflammatories. It works by reducing inflammation in the body.
Warnings and Precautions
Before taking AZULFIDINE, tell your doctor if you have or have ever had:
- Kidney or liver disease
- Porphyria (a blood disorder)
- Other blood problems (such as anemia or low white blood cell levels)
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Thyroid problems
- A glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency (an inherited enzyme condition)
- An infection or a previous infection that keeps coming back
- A blockage in your stomach, bowel, or urinary tract
- Severe allergiesor allergies to medications
For men, this medicine may cause temporary infertility. Your fertility will return when you stop taking AZULFIDINE.
Elderly people may be more sensitive to the side effects of AZULFIDINE. The medicine should be used with caution in those 65 years and older.
AZULFIDINE shouldn't be used in children younger than 2 years old. Safety and effectiveness haven't been confirmed in this age group.
This medicine may cause very bad skin conditions such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome or toxic epidermal necrolysis.
Seek medical help right away if you experience symptoms such as:
- Red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin
- Red or irritated eyes
- Sores in your mouth, throat, eyes, or nose
AZULFIDINE may cause your skin or urine to turn yellowish-orange. This is a harmless effect.
If you have diabetes, AZULFIDINE may affect your blood sugar. Check your levels often, and talk to your doctor before changing any doses of your diabetes medicines.
Continue to take AZULFIDINE even if you feel well. Don't stop taking the medicine without first talking to your doctor.
Keep all appointments with your healthcare provider and laboratory while taking AZULFIDINE. Your physician may want to perform frequent tests to check your body's response to the drug.
Pregnancy and AZULFIDINE
AZULFIDINE isn't likely to harm an unborn baby.
However, tell your doctor if you're pregnant or might become pregnant before taking this medicine.
The drug can be found in breast milk. You shouldn't breastfeed while taking AZULFIDINE without first talking to your doctor.
Common Side Effects of AZULFIDINE
Tell your doctor if any of the following side effects become severe or don't go away:
- Loss of appetite
- Upset stomach or stomach pain
Serious Side Effects of AZULFIDINE
Tell your doctor right away if you experience any of the symptoms listed in the Warning section or any of the following serious side effects:
- Skin rash, itching, or hives
- Sore throat
- Muscle or joint aches
- Pale or yellow skin
- Bluish discoloration of the skin or nails
- Difficulty swallowing
- Extreme tiredness
- Unusual bruising or bleeding
- Unusual weakness
- Severe nausea, vomiting, or stomach pain
- Bloody diarrhea
- Pale stools
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes
- Chest pain or irregular heartbeat
- Hearing loss
- Decreased urination or dark-colored urine
- Mood changes
- Numbness or tingling in the fingers or toes
- Severe dizziness or drowsiness
- Severe stomach pain
- Trouble walking
Interactions with this medication
Tell your doctor about all prescription, non-prescription, illegal, recreational, herbal, nutritional, or dietary drugs you're taking before taking AZULFIDINE, especially:
- Anticoagulants such as Coumadin (warfarin)
- Folic acid
- Hiprex (methenamine)
- Lanoxin (digoxin)
AZULFIDINE and Other Interactions
AZULFIDINE may make your skin more sensitive to sunlight. Avoid any unnecessary sun exposure, and wear protective clothing and sunscreen while outdoors.
The medicine may also cause drowsiness or dizziness. Be cautious when driving or performing any task that requires alertness.
Proper Use of this medication
AZULFIDINE comes as a regular or delayed-release tablet.
The regular tablets are usually taken four times a day. The doses should be evenly-spaced throughout the day, so they're no more than eight hours apart.
The delayed-release tablets may be taken less often throughout the day. Your doctor will tell you how often to take them.
Take this medicine after a meal or with a snack. Then drink a full glass of water (8 ounces).
Swallow the tablets whole. Don't chew or crush them.
Follow your doctor's instructions carefully when taking AZULFIDINE. Don't take more or less of the drug than is prescribed.
Be sure to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day while taking AZULFIDINE.
Symptoms of a AZULFIDINE overdose may include:
- Severe stomach/abdominal pain
- Extreme drowsiness
- Persistent vomiting
If you suspect an overdose, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately.
You can get in touch with a poison control center at 800-222-1222.
Missed Dose of AZULFIDINE
If you miss a dose of AZULFIDINE, take it as soon as you remember.
However, skip the missed dose if it's almost time for your next scheduled dose.
Don't take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.