1. About colchicine
Colchicine is a medication for treating irritation and ache.
It may be used to:
- deal with flare-ups (assaults) of gout
- stop elevated flare-ups of gout whenever you first begin on a medication like allopurinol – taken to handle your situation long run
- stop flare-ups of signs of familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) – an inherited inflammatory situation
- Colchicine is obtainable on prescription. It comes as tablets.
2. Key info
- It is vital to stay to your prescribed dose. Taking even just a little bit extra will be very severe.
- Keep away from grapefruit and grapefruit juice whereas taking colchicine.
- Some folks discover it is gentler on their abdomen in the event that they take their medication with or after meals.
- Colchicine just isn’t often advisable in being pregnant or when breastfeeding.
3. Who can and might’t take colchicine
Colchicine will be taken by most adults aged 18 and over. It will possibly generally be prescribed for kids by a specialist physician. Colchicine just isn’t appropriate for some folks. To ensure it is secure for you, inform your physician in the event you:
- have ever had an allergic response to colchicine or another medicines
- have a extreme blood dysfunction (resembling blood dyscrasia, low quantities of white or crimson blood cells, a low blood platelet depend or issues together with your bone marrow operate)
- have extreme kidney or liver issues
- have issues together with your coronary heart or digestive system
- are pregnant, suppose you is perhaps pregnant or are attempting for a child
- Ladies who may turn into pregnant will often solely be prescribed colchicine if they’re utilizing appropriate contraception.
4. How and when to take it
Comply with your physician’s directions about what number of tablets to take, and what number of instances a day.
It is vital to stay to your prescribed dose. It’s because there may be solely a small distinction between an accurate dose and an overdose.
Colchicine comes as 500 microgram tablets. The phrase microgram is usually written with the Greek image μ adopted by the letter g (μg). A microgram is 1,000 instances smaller than a milligram (mg).
In case you have kidney or liver illness, your physician might prescribe a decrease dose. Additionally, you will have common blood and urine assessments. Swallow your pill entire, with a glass of water.
How a lot will I take?
- The standard dose is 1 pill (500 micrograms), taken 2 to 4 instances a day.
- You may often take colchicine for just some days. Your physician will let you know how lengthy to take it for.
For familial Mediterranean fever (FMF)
- Doses can range between 1 and 4 tablets (500 micrograms to 2mg), taken as soon as a day.
- Your physician will most likely suggest taking this medication long-term.
What if I overlook to take it?
When you overlook to take your colchicine, take it as quickly as you keep in mind. Until it is almost time in your subsequent dose. Through which case, skip the missed dose and take the subsequent one on the typical time.
By no means have 2 doses on the identical time. By no means have an additional dose to make up for a forgotten one.
When you overlook doses typically, it could assist to set an alarm to remind you. You may additionally ask your pharmacist for recommendation on different methods to recollect your medicines.
What if I take an excessive amount of?
Taking too many colchicine tablets will be very harmful. It could possibly be deadly.
Signs of taking an excessive amount of colchicine can embrace:
- feeling or being sick (nausea or vomiting)
- abdomen ache
- bloody diarrhoea
- indicators of low blood stress (resembling feeling dizzy or lightheaded)
Rapid motion required:
you’re taking an excessive amount of colchicine (even in the event you should not have any signs)
5. Unintended effects
Like all medicines, colchicine could cause unwanted side effects, though not everybody will get them.
Nonetheless, even delicate unwanted side effects will be very severe.
In case you have any unwanted side effects when taking colchicine, cease taking the medication and get medical assist right away.
Rapid motion required:
- are feeling or being sick
- have abdomen ache
- have diarrhoea
- have a excessive temperature, swollen mouth, sore throat, bleeding that doesn’t cease, uncommon bruising or pores and skin issues – these will be indicators of a significant issue together with your blood
Critical allergic response
In uncommon circumstances, it is doable to have a severe allergic (anaphylaxis) to colchicine.
Rapid motion required: Name 999 or go to A&E if:
- you get a pores and skin rash which will embrace itchy, crimson, swollen, blistered or peeling pores and skin
- you are wheezing
- you get tightness within the chest or throat
- you’ve bother respiratory or speaking
- your mouth, face, lips, tongue or throat begin swelling
- You may be having a severe allergic response and may have quick remedy in hospital.
- These should not all of the unwanted side effects of colchicine. For a full record, see the leaflet inside your medicines packet.
- You possibly can report any suspected aspect impact to the UK security scheme.
6. Being pregnant and breastfeeding
Colchicine and being pregnant
Colchicine can be utilized in being pregnant, though it isn’t prescribed typically.
When you turn into pregnant whereas taking colchicine for gout or familial Mediterranean fever (FMF), contact your physician.
Your physician will have the ability to clarify the dangers and advantages of taking colchicine, and can show you how to determine what’s finest for you and your child.
Colchicine and breastfeeding
Colchicine just isn’t often used for gout whilst you’re breastfeeding. Your physician might suggest a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) like ibuprofen as a substitute.
For FMF, a health care provider might prescribe colchicine whilst you’re breastfeeding. Colchicine has been taken by breastfeeding moms and has not been linked with any unwanted side effects of their infants.
In case your child just isn’t feeding in addition to typical, or they’re vomiting or have diarrhoea, or in case you have another considerations about your child, speak to a well being customer, midwife or physician as quickly as doable.
Non-urgent recommendation: Inform your physician in case you are:
- attempting to get pregnant
7. Cautions with different medicines
Sure medicines can intrude with the way in which colchicine works. Some could make you extra more likely to get severe or life-threatening unwanted side effects.
Communicate to your physician earlier than beginning on colchicine in the event you take:
- medicines that may have an effect on your kidneys, your liver or your blood (examine together with your physician in the event you’re undecided)
- clarithromycin or erythromycin (antibiotics used to deal with infections)
- ritonavir or atazanavir (antiviral medicines used to deal with HIV an infection)
- ciclosporin (medicines for psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, and after an organ transplant)
- ketoconazole, itraconazole or voriconazole (antifungal medicines)
- verapamil or diltiazem (medicines for the guts)
- disulfram (medication used to deal with alcohol dependence)
Your physician may have to regulate your dose in case you are taking any of those medicines.
Mixing colchicine with natural treatments and dietary supplements
There’s little or no details about taking natural medicines and dietary supplements with colchicine.
Inform your physician or pharmacist in the event you’re taking another medicines, together with natural treatments, nutritional vitamins or dietary supplements.
8. Frequent questions
How does colchicine work?
For gout, colchicine works by decreasing the irritation attributable to crystals of uric acid in your joints. This additionally helps to cut back ache.
The way in which that colchicine works for familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) is difficult. Colchicine can have an effect on the way in which your white blood cells work. This helps to cut back the irritation that may trigger signs.
How lengthy does it take to work?
Colchicine begins to work after round half-hour to 2 hours. Nonetheless, it could take a day or two earlier than you discover your irritation and ache begins to get higher.
When you're taking it to stop flare-ups of FMF, chances are you'll not really feel any totally different.
- How lengthy will I take it for?
Relying on why you are taking colchicine, chances are you'll solely must take it for a short while. For gout
assaults – remedy is often just for a couple of days.
For FMF – remedy is often long run. Chances are you'll must take it for the remainder of your life.
Speak to your physician in the event you're undecided how lengthy you want to take this medication for.
- Is it secure to take for a very long time?
It is usually a secure medication, so long as you observe your physician's directions. Nonetheless, in case you are taking a excessive dose for a very long time, there's a small threat of getting kidney or liver issues.
Speak to your physician in the event you're anxious. They'll have the ability to clarify the advantages and dangers of taking colchicine.
- Are there different medicines for treating gout?
There are a couple of varieties of medication that may assist with gout and its signs. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicine (NSAIDs) resembling ibuprofen can assist signs resembling irritation and ache throughout a gout assault.
Allopurinol can assist stop your gout from coming again. It does this by decreasing the degrees of uric acid in your physique. This stops urate crystals (that trigger irritation and ache) from forming in and round your joints.
Speak to your physician or pharmacist in case you have any questions on your remedy.
- Can I drink alcohol with it?
Sure, you may drink alcohol with colchicine. Alcohol doesn't have an effect on how this medication works.
Nonetheless, ingesting alcohol will increase the extent of uric acid in your blood. This might make your gout worse.
It is best to stay to the nationwide tips of not more than 14 models every week. An ordinary glass of wine (175ml) is 2 models. A pint of lager or beer is often 2 to three models of alcohol.
- Is there any meals or drink I must keep away from?
Usually you may eat and drink as regular whereas taking colchicine. The one factor you want to keep away from is grapefruit and grapefruit juice. It's because grapefruit can enhance the quantity of colchicine in your blood.
Nonetheless, decreasing sure food and drinks might assist to cease gout coming again. It is a good suggestion to not have an excessive amount of:
-crimson meat, kidneys, liver, or seafood
-sugary drinks and snacks
- Will it have an effect on my contraception?
Colchicine won't have an effect on any contraceptives, together with the mixed capsule or emergency contraception.
- Will it have an effect on my fertility?
There have been some reviews that colchicine could cause decreased sperm depend in males if taken long-term. That is often reversible whenever you cease remedy. There is not any agency proof to recommend that taking colchicine reduces fertility in girls.
Nonetheless, speak to a health care provider in the event you suppose chances are you'll be pregnant, otherwise you're attempting for a child. It's because this medication just isn't often advisable in being pregnant. Ladies who may get pregnant will often solely be prescribed this medication if they're taking a advisable contraceptive.
- Can I drive or journey a motorbike?
Usually, colchicine won't have an effect on your capability to drive or journey a motorbike. Nonetheless, in the event you really feel sleepy or dizzy after taking your medication, don't drive, cycle or use any equipment or instruments till you are feeling OK once more.
- Can life-style adjustments assist to cease gout coming again?
Making life-style adjustments may imply you may cease or cut back additional assaults.
- get to a wholesome weight, however keep away from crash diets – you could possibly strive the NHS weight reduction plan
- goal for a wholesome, balanced food regimen, with loads of greens and a few low-fat dairy meals
- have a minimum of 2 alcohol-free days every week
- drink loads of fluids to keep away from getting dehydrated
- train recurrently – however keep away from intense train or placing a number of stress on joints
- quit smoking
- don’t eat plenty of crimson meat, kidneys, liver, or seafood
- should not have a number of sugary drinks and snacks
- should not have a number of fatty meals
- don’t drink greater than 14 models of alcohol every week