Mesalamine

By Medically reviewed by hellodoktor

Generic Name: Mesalamine Brand Name(s): Mesalamine.

Uses

What is mesalamine used for?

Mesalamine is commonly used to treat mild to moderate ulcerative colitis. It is also used to prevent the symptoms of ulcerative colitis from recurring.

Mesalamine may also be used for purposes, ask your doctor for more information.

How should I take mesalamine?

Take mesalamine with a full glass of water. Do not crush, break, or chew a mesalamine tablet or capsule. Swallow the pill whole.

Other brands of mesalamine can be taken with or without food. Follow your doctor’s instructions or the directions on your medicine label.

How do I store mesalamine?

Mesalamine is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store mesalamine in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of mesalamine that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush mesalamine down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using mesalamine?

This medicine can cause unusual results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are taking mesalamine.

This drug is contraindicated in case of:

  • Hypersensitivity to mesalazine, salicylates, and sulfasalazine
  • Severe impaired renal (CrCl < 20 ml/min) or hepatic function
  • Children <2 years

Also, these are special precautions that you may notice:

  • Mild to moderate impaired renal or hepatic function (test serum creatinine before treatment, every 3 months for 1st year, every 6 months for next 4 years, then annually).
  • Elderly; active peptic ulcer; pregnancy, lactation; patients predisposed to pericarditis or myocarditis.
  • Counsel patients to report any unexplained bleeding, bruising, purpura, sore throat, fever or malaise during treatment; perform blood count and stop treatment if blood dyscrasias suspected.
  • Counsel patients taking delayed release tablets to report repeatedly unbroken or partially broken tablets in their feces. Pyloric stenosis may delay release into colon.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

There isn’t enough information about the safety of using mesalamine during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking mesalamine.

Mesalamine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding a baby.

Side effects

What side effects can occur from mesalamine?

When using this drug, common side effects may include:

Stop using mesalamine and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • Severe stomach pain
  • Cramping
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Skin rash
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea
  • Upper stomach pain
  • Itching
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dark urine
  • Clay-colored stools
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
  • Little or no urinating
  • Swelling
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Bloody or tarry stools
  • Coughing up blood or vomit (that looks like coffee grounds)

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction including hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with mesalamine?

Mesalamine may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

These products may interact with your medicine, including:

  • Azathioprine
  • Mercaptopurine
  • NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve), celecoxib, diclofenac, indomethacin, meloxicam, and others

Does food or alcohol interact with mesalamine?

Mesalamine may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with mesalamine?

Mesalamine may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.

To make sure mesalamine is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • A stomach condition called pyloric stenosis
  • Heart disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease
  • A history of blockage in your digestive tract (stomach or intestines)

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using mesalamine.

What is the dose of mesalamine for an adult?

250 and 500 mg capsules: The recommended dose is 1 g orally 4 times a day. Duration of therapy: Up to 8 weeks.

400 mg tablets: The recommended dose is 800 mg orally 3 times a day. Duration of therapy: 6 weeks.

400 mg delayed-release capsules: The recommended dose is 800 mg orally 3 times a day. Duration of therapy: 6 weeks.

800 mg delayed-release tablets: The recommended dose is 1600 mg orally 3 times a day. Duration of therapy: 6 weeks.

1200 mg tablets: The recommended dose is 2.4 to 4.8 g orally once a day with food.

Uses: Treatment of mildly to moderately active ulcerative colitis and induction of remission of ulcerative colitis.

Ulcerative Colitis – Maintenance:

375 mg extended release capsules: The recommended dose is 1.5 g (4 capsules) orally once a day in the morning.

400 and 800 mg tablets and capsules: The recommended dose is 1.6 g orally daily in divided doses.

1200 mg tablets: The recommended dose is 2.4 g (2 tablets) orally once a day with food.

Ulcerative Proctitis:

Suppository:

The recommended dose is 1 suppository (1000 mg) rectally once a day at bedtime. Duration of therapy: 6 weeks.

Enema:

The recommended dose is 1 rectal installation (4 gm), once a day, preferably at bedtime. Duration of therapy: 6 weeks.

What is the dose of mesalamine for a child?

Ulcerative Colitis – Active:

400 tablets or capsules, dosing is weight-based:

  • 17 to less than 33 kg: The recommended dose is 36 to 71 mg/kg/day, orally, divided into 2 doses a day. Maximum dose is 1.2 g/day.
  • 33 to less than 54 kg: The recommended dose is 37 to 61 mg/kg/day, orally, divided into 2 doses a day. Maximum dose is 2 g/day.
  • 54 to 90 kg: The recommended dose is 27 to 44 mg/kg/day, orally, divided into 2 doses a day. Maximum dose is 2.4 gm/day.

Duration of therapy: 6 weeks.

Use: Treatment of mildly to moderately active ulcerative colitis in patients 5 years of age or older (tablets) or 12 years of age and older (capsules).

How is mesalamine available?

Mesalamine is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

Capsule, extended-release

  • 250mg (Pentasa)
  • 375mg (Apriso)
  • 500mg (Pentasa)

Tablet, delayed-release

  • 400mg (Asacol)
  • 800mg (Asacol HD)
  • 1.2g (Lialda)

Capsule, delayed-release

  • 400mg (Delzicol)

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of mesalamine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Review Date: March 18, 2017 | Last Modified: September 13, 2019

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