What is this medicine?

MESALAMINE (me SAL a meen) is used to treat the pain and inflammation caused by ulcerative colitis.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Asacol, Asacol HD, Delzicol, Lialda, Pentasa

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • heart disease

kidney disease

  • liver disease

pyloric stenosis

  • sun sensitivity

an unusual or allergic reaction to mesalamine, salicylates, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives

  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant

breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth with a glass of water. Do not cut, crush, or chew the tablets or capsules. Some products should be taken with food. Ask your health care provider how to take this medicine, and follow the directions on the prescription label. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Do not stop taking this medicine except on the advice of your doctor or health care professional.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • azathioprine
  • digoxin
  • mercaptopurine, 6-MP
  • nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Tell your doctor or health care professional if your symptoms do not start to get better after several days. There is usually an improvement in 3 to 21 days. You may need about 6 weeks of treatment to get good results.

Do not change the brand of this medicine that you are taking without talking to your doctor or health care professional. All brands do not have the same dose.

You may notice the empty shell from this medicine in your stool. If this happens frequently, you should contact your doctor or health care professional.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • bloody diarrhea
  • chest pain
  • difficulty breathing, wheezing
  • fever
  • pain or difficulty passing urine
  • unusually weak or tired
  • yellowing of the eyes or skin

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • headache
  • nausea, vomiting
  • stomach gas
  • stomach pain or cramps

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

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