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Why is this medication prescribed?
Mesalamine, an anti-inflammatory medicine, is used to treat ulcerative colitis, a condition in which the bowel is inflamed. Mesalamine reduces bowel inflammation, diarrhea (stool frequency), rectal bleeding, and stomach pain.
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
How should this medicine be used?
Mesalamine comes as a tablet and capsule to take by mouth and suppositories and an enema to use in the rectum. The tablet form usually is taken three times a day, and the capsule form usually is taken four times a day. The suppository form usually is used twice a day, and the enema usually is used once a day at bedtime. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take mesalamine exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Swallow the tablets or capsules whole; do not cut, crush, or chew them.
The enema is a liquid to be delivered directly into the rectum. It comes in a disposable bottle with an applicator. Each bottle contains one dose. Remove the bottle from the protective foil pouch by tearing it or cutting it with a scissors. Be careful not to puncture the bottle. Read the patient instructions that come with mesalamine.
If you are to use the enema, follow these steps:
If you are to insert a suppository, follow these steps:
Mesalamine must be used regularly to be effective. You may need to use it for up to 6 weeks before your symptoms improve.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking mesalamine,
What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Although side effects from mesalamine are not common, they can occur. Temporary hair loss may occur with mesalamine treatment; this effect is harmless.
Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor may order certain lab tests to check your response to mesalamine.
Do not let anyone else take your medicine. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT