Colchicine
DESCRIPTION

Colchicine is a medication mainly used to treat gout attacks. This drug is also commonly referred to as colcrys.

How it works

Gout symptoms usually develop suddenly in one or more joints. The big toe, ankle and the knee are some parts that are regularly affected. This condition is caused when there is too much uric acid in the blood. When there is a high level of uric acid in your blood, it can create crystal forms in your joints. Colchicine works by decreasing the buildup of uric acid in the blood. This way, it is able to reduce pain and swelling.

Uses

Colchicine is mainly prescribed to prevent and control gout attacks, which are also known as flares. They are useful in reducing the pain that occurs in the affected joints. Colchicine is not a pain killer and therefore should not be used to relieve other forms of pain.

Dosage

You can take this medication, by mouth, without or without food. Always closely follow the prescription provided by your physician. Do not attempt to make any changes to the prescription on your own. Increasing the amount of medication you consume will not enable you to heal faster. On the contrary, it will make your condition worse and make you more susceptible to side effects.

If you are consuming this medication to treat a gout attack, consume it during the first sign of the attack. If another gout attack follows, you need to know when to take the next dose. Speak with your physician to figure this schedule out.

If you are taking colchicine to prevent gout attacks, follow the dose schedule provided by the physician. The dosage will be based on your medical condition and other medications which you might be taking. In order to see the best effects of this medication, you need to use it regularly.

Therefore, do not skip your dose accidently or otherwise.

Side effects

You are likely to experience the following side effects when consuming this drug during the treatment period.

Diarrhea
Nausea
Vomiting
Cramps
Abdominal pain

Although you are less likely to experience the following side effects, it is important to be aware of them.

Gray color of the lips
Numbness in fingers
Muscle weakness
Signs of infection
Shortness of breath
Fast heart beat
Signs of kidney problems

If you do experience any of these, make sure to get immediate medical assistance. If not, these side effects can worsen with time.

Precautions

It is imperative for you to adhere to the following precautionary methods to reduce the risk of side effects.

Inform your healthcare provider if you are allergic to any of the ingredients used in colchicine.
Inform your physician if you have a history of liver or kidney disease.
Since alcohol can reduce the effectiveness of this medication, avoid alcohol consumption during the treatment period.
This medication can change the way your body absorbs certain food items. Consult with your physician about your daily meal plan.

Self-care

Consuming this drug can reduce sperm production among men. This can reduce a man’s ability to father a child.

During the period of pregnancy, this medication must only be consumed when it is absolutely necessary.

Colchicine can be passed on to an infant through breast milk. So, avoid nursing your child during the treatment period.

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