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Dapsone Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Dapsone is an antibacterial medication used in the treatment of dermatitis herpetiformis (a skin condition) and leprosy (Hansen's disease). Common side effects of dapsone include nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, dizziness, blurred vision, ringing in the ears, headache, insomnia, or increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight.
The dosage of Dapsone is individually adjusted starting in adults with 50 mg daily and correspondingly smaller doses in children. If full control is not achieved within the range of 50-300 mg daily, higher doses may be tried. Dosage should be reduced to a minimum maintenance level as soon as possible. Other drugs can interact with Dapsone, especially those that may also affect the blood. Tell your doctor all prescription or over-the-counter medicines and supplements you use. During pregnancy, Dapsone should be used only when prescribed. This medication passes into breast milk and may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Our Dapsone Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What is Patient Information in Detail?
Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.
Dapsone in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects
In rare cases, dapsone has been associated with serious, and sometimes fatal blood and/or liver problems. Contact your doctor immediately if you experience a sore throat, fever, pale skin, bruising or pinpoint red spots on the skin, or yellowing of the skin or eyes. These may be symptoms of blood or liver problems.
Contact your doctor immediately if you develop a rash while taking dapsone. In rare cases, dapsone has been associated with serious, and sometimes fatal, skin reactions.
If you experience any of the following serious side effects, seek emergency medical attention or contact your doctor immediately:
- an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
- bluish skin color;
- muscle weakness;
- numbness or tingling;
- abdominal pain;
- difficulty breathing;
- dark colored urine or pale colored stools; or
- unusual tiredness.
Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Notify your doctor if you experience
- nausea or vomiting;
- blurred vision;
- ringing in the ears;
- insomnia; or
- increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight.
Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Dapsone (Dapsone)
What is Patient Information Overview?
A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.
Dapsone Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: unusually fast heartbeat, unusually fast breathing, bluish lips/skin, chest pain, mental/mood changes, muscle weakness, difficulty urinating.
This drug may rarely cause very serious low blood counts (bone marrow suppression) or liver disease. Seek immediate medical attention if you develop signs of an infection (e.g., fever, chills, persistent sore throat), easy bruising/bleeding, unusual tiredness, pale skin, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine, stomach/abdominal pain.
Dapsone can commonly cause a rash that is usually not serious. However, you may not be able to tell it apart from a rare rash that could be a sign of a severe reaction. Therefore, seek immediate medical attention if you develop any rash.
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.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Read the entire patient information overview for Dapsone (Dapsone)
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Dapsone FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
In addition to the warnings listed above, the following syndromes and serious reactions have been reported in patients on Dapsone.
Dose-related hemolysis is the most common adverse effect and is seen in patients with or without G6PD deficiency. Almost all patients demonstrate the inter-related changes of a loss of 1-2g of hemoglobin, an increase in the reticulocytes (2-12%), a shortened red cell life span and a rise in methemoglobin. G6PD deficient patients have greater responses.
Nervous System Effects
Peripheral neuropathy is a definite but unusual complication of Dapsone therapy in non-leprosy patients. Motor loss is predominant. If muscle weakness appears, Dapsone should be withdrawn. Recovery on withdrawal is usually substantially complete. The mechanism of recovery is reported by axonal regeneration. Some recovered patients have tolerated retreatment at reduced dosage. In leprosy this complication may be difficult to distinguish from a leprosy reactional state.
Body As A Whole: In addition to the warnings and adverse effects reported above, additional adverse reactions include: nausea, vomiting, abdominal pains, pancreatitis, vertigo, blurred vision, tinnitus, insomnia, fever, headache, psychosis, phototoxicity, pulmonary eosinophilia, tachycardia, albuminuria, the nephrotic syndrome, hypoalbuminemia without proteinuria, renal papillary necrosis, male infertility, drug-induced Lupus erythematosus and an infectious mononucleosis-like syndrome. In general, with the exception of the complications of severe anoxia from overdosage (retinal and optic nerve damage, etc.) these adverse reactions have regressed off drug.
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Dapsone (Dapsone)
Additional Dapsone Information
Dapsone - User Reviews
Dapsone User Reviews
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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