What is allopurinol?

Allopurinol reduces the production of uric acid in your body. Uric acid buildup can lead to gout or kidney stones.

Allopurinol is used to treat gout or kidney stones, and to decrease levels of uric acid in people who are receiving cancer treatment.

Allopurinol may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Precautions

Do not use this medication if you have ever had a serious allergic reaction to allopurinol.

Before taking allopurinol, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

  • kidney disease;
  • liver disease;
  • diabetes;
  • congestive heart failure;
  • high blood pressure; or
  • if you are receiving any chemotherapy.

If you have any of these conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take allopurinol.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

Allopurinol can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Avoid being near people who have colds, the flu, or other contagious illnesses. Contact your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.

Allopurinol can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

Avoid drinking alcohol. It may worsen your condition.

Your doctor may recommend a special diet to help treat your condition. Follow your diet and medication routines very closely.

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Instructions

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

An overdose of allopurinol is not expected to produce life-threatening symptoms.

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at your next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

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Side Effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using allopurinol and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild;
  • pain or bleeding when you urinate;
  • urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • fever, sore throat, and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash;
  • bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness;
  • easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness;
  • fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms;
  • jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
  • seizure (convulsions).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
  • dizziness or drowsiness;
  • increased sweating; or
  • joint pain.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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Interactions

Before taking allopurinol, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:

  • azathioprine (Imuran);
  • chlorpropamide (Diabinese);
  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Sandimmune, Neoral);
  • mercaptopurine (Purinethol);
  • an antibiotic such as ampicillin (Principen, Omnipen, others) or amoxicillin (Amoxil, Augmentin, Trimox, Wymox);
  • a blood thinner such as dicoumarol or warfarin (Coumadin); or
  • a diuretic (water pill).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with allopurinol. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Other Names

Aloprim, Lopurin, Zyloprim, and allopurinol

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Disclaimer

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2004 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version 2.05. Revision date 8/23/04

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