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Sulfasalazine

Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

Brand Name: Azulfidine, Azulfidine EN

Generic Name: Sulfasalazine

Drug Class: 5-Aminosalicylic Acid Derivatives; DMARDs, Other

What Is Sulfasalazine and How Does It Work?

Sulfasalazine is used to treat a certain type of bowel disease called ulcerative colitis. This medication does not cure this condition, but it helps decrease symptoms such as fever, stomach pain, diarrhea, and rectal bleeding. After an attack is treated, sulfasalazine is also used to increase the amount of time between attacks. Sulfasalazine works by reducing irritation and swelling in the large intestines. In addition, delayed-release tablets of sulfasalazine are used to treat rheumatoid arthritis. Sulfasalazine helps to reduce joint pain, swelling, and stiffness. Early treatment of rheumatoid arthritis with sulfasalazine helps to reduce/prevent further joint damage so you can do more of your normal daily activities. This medication is used with other drugs, rest, and physical therapy in patients who have not responded to other medications (salicylates, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs-NSAIDs).

Sulfasalazine may also be used to treat another type of bowel disease called Crohn's disease.

Sulfasalazine is available under the following different brand names: Azulfidine, and Azulfidine EN.

Dosages of Sulfasalazine

Adult and Pediatric Dosage Forms and Strengths

Tablet

  • 500 mg

Tablet, enteric coated (delayed release)

  • 500 mg

Dosage Considerations – Should be Given as Follows:

Ulcerative Colitis

  • Mild to moderate cases, adjunctive therapy in severe cases, and prolongation of remission
  • Adult: 3-4 g/day orally divided three times daily after meals; may start 1-2 g once/day
  • Children under 6 years old: Safety and efficacy not established
  • Children 6 years or older
    • Initial: 40-60 mg/kg/day orally divided every 4-8 hours after meals
    • Maintenance: 30 mg/kg/day orally divided every 6 hours after meals

Rheumatoid Arthritis

  • Inadequate response or intolerance to salicylates or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Enteric coated: 2-3 g/day orally divided three times daily after meals; may start 0.5-1 g once/day

Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis

  • Polyarticular course with inadequate response to salicylates or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Children under 6 years old: Safety and efficacy not established
  • Children 6 years or older: Gradually titrate at weekly intervals up to 30-50 mg/kg/day orally divided twice daily after meals; not to exceed 2 g/day

Crohn's Disease (Off-label)

  • 3-6 g/day orally divided three times daily after meals

Administration

  • Take after meals
  • Administer in equally divided doses
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/11/2018



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