Balsalazide is used to treat a certain bowel disease (ulcerative colitis). It helps to reduce symptoms of ulcerative colitis such as diarrhea, rectal bleeding, and stomach pain. Balsalazide belongs to a class of drugs known as aminosalicylates. It works by decreasing swelling in the colon.
If you have trouble swallowing the capsules, you may open them and sprinkle the contents onto a spoonful of applesauce. Swallow the food/medication mixture immediately. Do not prepare a supply in advance.
Dosage is based on your age, medical condition, and response to therapy.
Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same times each day.
Inform your doctor if your condition worsens or does not improve after several weeks.
Headache, nausea, vomiting, joint pain, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever, sore throat, trouble sleeping, or loss of appetite may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Infrequently, balsalazide can worsen ulcerative colitis. Tell your doctor immediately if your symptoms worsen after starting this medication (e.g., increased abdominal pain, rectal bleeding).
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: change in the amount of urine, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine, unusual/extreme tiredness, severe stomach/abdominal pain, persistent nausea/vomiting, burning/painful urination, fast/pounding heartbeat.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
In the US -
Before taking balsalazide, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other aminosalicylates (such as mesalamine, olsalazine); or to salicylates (e.g., aspirin, salsalate); or to sulfasalazine; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).
This medication contains sodium. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you are on a salt-restricted diet or if you have a condition that could be worsened by an increase in salt intake (such as heart failure).
This medication is similar to aspirin. Children and teenagers should not take aspirin or aspirin-related medications (e.g., salicylates) if they have chickenpox, flu, or any undiagnosed illness, or if they have just been given a live virus vaccine (e.g., varicella vaccine), without first consulting a doctor about Reye's syndrome, a rare but serious illness.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
Balsalazide is very similar to mesalamine. Do not use mesalamine medications taken by mouth while using balsalazide.
This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (including urine normetanephrine levels), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., liver function tests) may be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Information last revised April 2014. Copyright(c) 2014 First Databank, Inc.
With WebMD's Medicine Cabinet, you can check interactions with drugs.Go to medicine cabinet