Asacol is a brand name for , a medication given for the treatment of . Ulcerative colitis is an inflammation of the inner lining of the rectum and colon characterized by periods of remission. Symptoms alternate between flare-ups and remission, sometimes throughout a person’s whole life. When a person has a flare-up, the rectum or colon become inflamed, and people experience diarrhea, bleeding, abdominal cramps, and a feeling of urgently needing to go to the bathroom. Flare-ups can vary in how long they last and how severe they are. Asacol can also be used to treat symptoms of Crohn’s disease, which is a digestive disorder similar to ulcerative colitis.

Asacol is used to alleviate symptoms during a flare-up, and to help prolong periods of remission. It comes in time-release tablets and is generally well tolerated. As with any drug, there are side effects that must be taken into consideration when taking Asacol. These can include headache, stomach ache, general achiness, rash, runny nose, sore throat, nervousness, and infections. Some side effects, though more rare, are more serious. You should call your doctor immediately if you experience chest pain, shortness of breath, vomiting blood or material that looks like coffee grounds, blood in urine or more frequent urination, confusion, or swelling. In addition to being cautious about these side effects, you should also avoid Alsacol if you are allergic to salicyclates such as aspirin.

There are two facets to treating ulcerative colitis. During a flare-up, your doctor may give you medication to treat the symptoms, such as diarrhea or stomach cramps. He or she may also give you a medication such as Asacol that will help to alleviate these symptoms. During a time of remission, you may be prescribed Asacol as a preventative, so that your remission will last longer, and your flare-up will be less severe if it does occur.

There have been no adequate tests indicating whether Asacol is safe for pregnant women to take. It has been shown to be safe to both mother and fetu in animals tests, but since these tests are not always indicative of how people would react, it is still advisable to avoid taking Asacol unless it is clearly necessary. It is also not known whether Asacol is excreted in breast milk, so doctors should discourage nursing mothers from taking it until breast feeding stops. Asacol has not been tested for use in children, so extreme caution should be used in the area as well. The same is true for elderly patients. Their dosage should be carefully monitored, and if they have kidney problems, those should be monitored as well while they’re being treated with Asacol.

Certain drugs can interact with Asacol, though they will not necessarily prevent you from using Asacol. Make sure your doctor knows if you take Imuran, Purinethol, aspirin or other NSAID’s, cancer medication such as Proleukin, Gliadel, or Platinol, antibiotics such as Capastat, Frifadin, Rimactane, and Rafater, and antiviral medications such as Zovirax, Hepsera, Vistide, or Foscavir. He or she will want to monitor you closely to make sure you have no adverse reactions.