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Gastrointestinal disorders are the most common adverse reactions with colchicine. They are often the first signs of toxicity and may indicate that the colchicine dose needs to be reduced or therapy stopped. These include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
Toxic manifestations associated with colchicine include myelosuppression, disseminated intravascular coagulation, and injury to cells in the renal, hepatic, circulatory, and central nervous system. These most often occur with excessive accumulation or overdosage [see OVERDOSE].
The following reactions have been reported with colchicine. These have been generally reversible by interrupting treatment or lowering the dose of colchicine:
Digestive: abdominal cramping, abdominal pain, diarrhea, lactose intolerance, nausea, vomiting
Neurological: sensory motor neuropathy
Hepatobiliary: elevated AST, elevated ALT
Read the Colchicine (colchicine) Side Effects Center for a complete guide to possible side effects
Colchicine is a substrate of the efflux transporter P-glycoprotein (P-gp), and the CYP3A4 metabolizing enzyme. Fatal drug interactions have been reported when colchicine is administered with clarithromycin, a dual inhibitor of CYP3A4 and P-glycoprotein. Toxicities have also been reported when colchicine is administered with inhibitors of CYP3A4 that may not be potent inhibitors of P-gp (e.g., grapefruit juice, erythromycin, verapamil), or inhibitors of P-gp that may not be potent inhibitors of CYP3A4 (e.g., cyclosporine).
Patients with renal or hepatic impairment should not be given colchicine capsules with drugs that inhibit both P-glycoprotein and CYP3A4 [See CONTRAINDICATIONS]. Combining these dual inhibitors with colchicine capsules in patients with renal and hepatic impairment has resulted in life-threatening or fatal colchicine toxicity.
Physicians should ensure that patients are suitable candidates for treatment with colchicine capsules and remain alert for signs and symptoms of toxic reactions associated with increased colchicine exposure due to drug interactions. Signs and symptoms of colchicine toxicity should be evaluated promptly and, if toxicity is suspected, colchicine capsules should be discontinued immediately.
The concomitant use of colchicine capsules and CYP3A4 inhibitors (e.g., clarithromycin, ketoconazole, grapefruit juice, erythromycin, verapamil, etc.) should be avoided due to the potential for serious and life-threatening toxicity [See WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS and CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
If co-administration of colchicine capsules and a CYP3A4 inhibitor is necessary, the dose of colchicine capsules should be adjusted by either reducing the daily dose or reducing the dose frequency, and the patient should be monitored carefully for colchicine toxicity [See CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
The concomitant use of colchicine capsules and inhibitors of P-glycoprotein (e.g. clarithromycin, ketoconazole, cyclosporine, etc.) should be avoided due to the potential for serious and life-threatening toxicity [See WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS and CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
If co-administration of colchicine capsules and a P-gp inhibitor is necessary, the dose of colchicine capsules should be adjusted by either reducing the daily dose or reducing the dose frequency, and the patient should be monitored carefully for colchicine toxicity [See CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
HMG-CoA Reductase Inhibitors And Fibrates
Some drugs such as HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors and fibrates may increase the risk of myopathy when combined with colchicine capsules. Complaints of muscle pain or weakness could be an indication to check serum creatinine kinase levels for signs of myopathy.
Drug-Drug Interaction Studies
Four pharmacokinetic studies evaluated the effects of co-administration of voriconazole (200 mg BID), fluconazole (200 mg QD), cimetidine (800 mg BID), and propafenone (225 mg BID) on systemic levels of colchicine. Colchicine can be administered with these drugs at the tested doses without a need for dose adjustment. However, these results should not be extrapolated to other co-administered drugs [See CYP3A4, P-Glycoprotein and Pharmacokinetics].
Drug Abuse And Dependence
Tolerance, abuse, or dependence from colchicine has not been reported.This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Last reviewed on RxList: 8/31/2016
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