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Mesalamine Extended Release

Generic Name: mesalamine (oral/rectal)
Brands: Asacol, Pentasa, Rowasa


What is the most important information I should know about Mesalamine Extended Release?

· Do not crush, break, or chew the tablets or capsules. Swallow them whole. They are specially formulated to release the medication after they have passed through your stomach.

· Notify your doctor if you repeatedly find undissolved tablets in your stool.

 

What is Mesalamine Extended Release?

· The exact way that Mesalamine Extended Release works is unknown, but it is believed to reduce the actions of a substance in the body that causes inflammation, tissue damage, and diarrhea.

· Mesalamine is used to treat ulcerative colitis, proctitis, and proctosigmoiditis. Mesalamine is also used to prevent the symptoms of ulcerative colitis from recurring.

· Mesalamine may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

 

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking Mesalamine Extended Release?

· Tell your doctor if you have any type of kidney disease. You may require a lower dose or special monitoring during your therapy with Mesalamine Extended Release.

· Mesalamine is in the FDA pregnancy category B. This means that it is unlikely to harm an unborn baby. Do not take Mesalamine Extended Release without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.

· Mesalamine passes into breast milk and may affect a nursing baby. Do not take Mesalamine Extended Release without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

 

How should I take Mesalamine Extended Release?

· Take Mesalamine Extended Release exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

· Take each dose with a full glass of water.

· Mesalamine can be taken with or without food.

 

· Do not crush, break, or chew the tablets or capsules. Swallow them whole. They are specially formulated to release the medication after they have passed through your stomach.

· Notify your doctor if you repeatedly find undissolved tablets in your stool.

· Try to empty your bowel just before using a rectal form of Mesalamine Extended Release.

· Insert the suppositories rectally. Remove the foil wrapper and insert a suppository into the rectum, pointed end first. Avoid excessive handling of the suppository, because it is designed to melt at body temperature. Retain the suppository for one to three hours, or longer, if possible to get the maximum benefit from this medication.

· Shake the rectal suspension well before use. Remove the protective cap from the applicator tip. Hold the bottle at the neck to prevent any of the medication from spilling out. Gently insert the tip into the rectum, pointing toward the belly button (umbilicus). Squeeze the bottle steadily to discharge most of the medication. Retain the suspension overnight if possible to get the maximum benefit from this medication.

· Use caution when applying the suppositories or rectal suspension. These products may stain clothing, flooring, painted surfaces, vinyl, enamel, marble, granite, and other surfaces.

· The rectal suspension may darken slightly in color. Throw away any bottles that contain very dark brown liquid.

· Store Mesalamine Extended Release at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

 

What happens if I miss a dose?

· Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take only your next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose of this medication.

 

What happens if I overdose?

· Seek emergency medical attention.

· Symptoms of a Mesalamine Extended Release overdose include ringing in your ears, dizziness, headache, confusion, drowsiness, sweating, hyperventilation, vomiting, and diarrhea.

 

What should I avoid while taking Mesalamine Extended Release?

· Use caution when applying the suppositories or rectal suspension. These products may stain clothing, flooring, painted surfaces, vinyl, enamel, marble, granite, and other surfaces.

· There are no restrictions on foods, beverages, or activities during therapy with Mesalamine Extended Release unless your doctor directs otherwise.

 

What are the possible side effects of Mesalamine Extended Release?

· If you experience any of the following serious side effects, stop taking Mesalamine Extended Release and seek emergency medical attention:     ·an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives);     ·worsening colitis (fever, abdominal pain, cramping, or bloody diarrhea); or     ·chest pain or shortness of breath.

· Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take Mesalamine Extended Release and talk to your doctor if you experience     ·nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, or belching;     ·headache or dizziness;     ·chills or sweating; or     ·a rash.

· Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

 

What other drugs will affect Mesalamine Extended Release?

· Mesalamine is not known to interact with other medicines.

· Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all medicines that you take so that your therapies can be monitored for interactions.

 

Where can I get more information?

· Your pharmacist has more information about Mesalamine Extended Release written for health professionals that you may read.


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