What is Azathioprine (Azathioprine) used for?
Azathioprine (Azathioprine) is an oral immunosuppressant used to prevent the rejection of organs in patients who have undergone a transplant. The medication operates by reducing the efficacy of the immune system as it may treat the new organ as a threat and can actually destroy the cells of the organ. This action also makes it effective for treating rheumatoid arthritis as the swelling, irritation, and pain associated with this condition are a result of an overactive immune system. Your physician may also prescribe it to be used along with other medications or to treat other unlisted conditions.
How should I use Azathioprine (Azathioprine)?
Strictly follow your physician's instructions for using Azathioprine (Azathioprine). It may be prescribed to be taken once or twice each day at the indicated dosage. This will depend on the condition being treated, the severity of your symptoms, your current health condition, and your response to similar treatments. Never self-medicate as misuse of this medication can lead to severe health complications including serious infection or death.
To use the medicine, swallow the doses whole along with a large glass of water. Take the tablets after eating a snack or meal to prevent nausea or an upset stomach. Do not change the form of the medication by chewing, splitting, crushing, or dissolving their contents in water as this may destroy them or alter their effects. You are also recommended to take these doses at the same times each day to keep a consistent level of medicine in the system at all times for the most efficient results.
Your doctor may ask that you attend regular medical consultations while undergoing treatment to make sure you are experiencing the correct results. After observing your response to the medication, you may be instructed to change the administration frequency or dosage until the best effects are found. Ask the pharmacist or physician any questions you have about using the medicine to ensure the correct application.
What are the side effects of Azathioprine (Azathioprine)?
The use of Azathioprine (Azathioprine) may cause side effects in some patients. These will not always occur and can vary greatly in severity. If you do experience any symptoms that worry you or are persistent, contact your physician immediately to make sure the correct response is taken. This may include lowering your dosage, reducing the frequency of administration, or medical attention in more serious cases.
Side effects that have been reported while using this medication include:
More serious symptoms that may require medical assistance are:
Azathioprine (Azathioprine) should not be used in patients with a known allergy to marcaptopurine or have had a bad reaction to similar treatments. Also inform your physician if the patient is elderly or has a thiopurine methyltransferase deficiency, reduced liver function, or decreased kidney function as these may cause complications with treatment. It may be necessary to reduce the dosage, administration frequency, or make other adjustments to prevent these potential problems from occurring.
Strictly follow all instructions provided to you by your physician or pharmacist while using Azathioprine (Azathioprine). Optimum and safe dosage can differ based on the patient and the condition being treated.
As this medication may be unsafe for certain patients, it is essential you always inform your physician if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, as well as if you have any allergies, other illnesses, or ongoing health conditions, and if you are taking any other form of medication, supplements, or herbal products.
Immediately seek emergency medical care if you have an allergic or hypersensitive reaction. Common signs of a reaction include hives, swelling, skin rashes, chest pains, as well as trouble breathing or swallowing.