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Sulfasalazine Description

Sulfasalazine Description


Pronunciation : (sul fa sal' a zeen)

Trade Name(s) : Sazo-en

Why it is prescribed: Sulfasalazine is a sulfa drug used to relieve and prevent irritation of the colon and rectum caused by mild or moderate ulcerative colitis.

When it is to be taken: Sulfasalazine is usually taken four times a day. It may have to be taken for one year or longer. Doses should be spaced throughout the day so that no more than eight hours separates any two doses, if possible. Follow the instructions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor to explain any part that you do not understand.

How it should be taken:
1. Sulfasalazine comes in plain and coated tablets and oral liquid.
2. Each dose should be taken after a meal or with a light snack and followed by a full glass of water.
3. Tablets should be swallowed whole, not chewed or crushed.
4. The liquid bottle should be shaken well before each use to mix the medicine evenly.
5. You may obtain a specially marked measuring spoon to be sure of an accurate dose.
6. You may have to take large amounts of sulfasalazine when you first begin using it but less later.

Special Instruction :
1. Drink at least eight glasses of liquid every day.
2. Take all of the medication prescribed, even after the irritation disappears. Failure to do so could allow the irritation to return.
3. Do not stop taking sulfazalazine without your doctor's consent.
4. Watch carefully for signs of sunburn. If you must be outside for long periods, wear protective clothing and use a sunscreen to protect your skin from sunlight.
5. Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory while taking this medication. You may need blood tests so that your doctor can evaluate your reaction to sulfazalazine.
6. If you forget to take a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember and take any remaining doses for that day at the regularly scheduled times. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, omit the missed dose. Do not take a double dose.

Side Effects :
1. Diarrhea, headache, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting. If these effects continue after the first week or cause great discomfort, contact your doctor.
2. Skin rash, itching, hives, swelling. Stop taking the medication and contact your doctor.
3. Male infertility. Fertility return when the drug is stopped.
4. Yellowish-orange coloring of the urine. The effect is harmless.
5. Sore throat, fever, joint or muscle aches, pale or yellow skin, swallowing problems, tiredness, unusual bleeding or bruising, weakness. Contact your doctor at once.

Other Precautions :
1. If you have had a bad reaction to any sulfa drug or oral diabetes drugs, do not take sulfasalazine without telling your doctor.
2. Before taking sulfasalazine, tell your doctor if you have asthma, hay fever kidney disease, liver disease, or blockage in your intestine or urinary tract or if you are pregnant or breast-feeding a baby.
3. Do not take any other prescription or nonprescription medications without consulting your doctor; other drugs may react with sulfasalazine and change their effects or increase side effects.

Storage Conditions : Keep this medication in the container it came in and out of the reach of children.

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