Sulfasalazine and 5-ASA Medications

OVERVIEW: Helps to reduce the inflammation in the intestinal tract.  

 

WHEN DO WE USE IT: Used to treat Ulcerative Colitis mostly, not commonly used as a primary treatment for Crohn Disease, although maybe used in combination with other therapies.  

HOW IT'S USED: Doses are often divided into multiple doses each day. The treatment is available in oral and rectal forms.

DURATION OF TREATMENT: It can be used to induce and maintain remission, so it can be used for a prolonged period of time. 

TYPES OF 5-ASA: Sulfasalazine, Asacol, Salofalk, Mesalamine, Pentasa

SIDE EFFECTS: 

  • Rash (often associated with the sulpha in sulfasalazine)

  • Headaches

  • Increased diarrhea or nausea

  • Sulfasalazine can reduce sperm count, however it does return to normal once dose stopped.