Frequently Asked Questions about UCERIS tablets
Find answers below to commonly asked questions about UCERIS tablets and ulcerative colitis (UC).
What are UCERIS tablets?
UCERIS tablets are a prescription corticosteroid medicine used to help get mild to moderate UC under control (to remission). UCERIS tablets may help relieve the symptoms of UC.
What makes UCERIS tablets different?
UCERIS tablets are a different kind of treatment for ulcerative colitis because they provide extended release of medication in the colon. Because of the way UCERIS is released, and processed in the body, most of the drug does not stay in the blood for very long.
Who should/should not take UCERIS tablets?
UCERIS tablets are approved for people experiencing active, mild to moderate symptoms of UC. Those who have had an allergic reaction to UCERIS tablets, or any of the ingredients in UCERIS tablets, should not take this medicine.
UCERIS tablets are contraindicated in people with hypersensitivity to budesonide or any of the ingredients of UCERIS. Severe, potentially life-threatening allergic reactions have occurred with other budesonide formulations. It is not known if UCERIS tablets are safe and effective in children.
How do UCERIS tablets work?
UCERIS tablets work by decreasing the level of inflammation, redness, and swelling in the colon. Decreasing the inflammation, redness, and swelling helps to bring the symptoms of UC under control.
UCERIS tablets travel through the digestive system and stay intact until reaching the colon. After reaching its destination and dissolving, medicine is slowly released throughout the entire colon.
What are the side effects of UCERIS tablets?
For the 5 most common steroid-related side effects (mood changes, sleep changes, insomnia, acne, rounding of the face), the occurrence rates were similar in both the UCERIS tablets and placebo groups.
However, UCERIS is a steroid. Long-time use of UCERIS tablets can cause you to have too much glucocorticosteroid medicine in your blood (hypercorticism). Tell your healthcare provider if you have any of the following signs and symptoms of hypercorticism: acne, bruising easily, rounding of your face (moon face), ankle swelling, thicker or more hair on your body and face, a fatty pad or hump between your shoulders (buffalo hump), or pink or purple stretch marks on the skin of your abdomen, thighs, breasts, and arms.
When UCERIS tablets are taken for a long period of time, the adrenal glands do not make enough steroid hormones (adrenal suppression). Tell your healthcare provider if you are under stress or have any of the following symptoms of adrenal suppression: tiredness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, and low blood pressure.
UCERIS tablets may weaken your immune system. Taking medicines that weaken your immune system makes you more likely to get infections. Avoid contact with people who have contagious diseases such as chickenpox or measles while taking UCERIS tablets.
Tell your doctor about any signs or symptoms of infection during treatment with UCERIS tablets, including: fever, chills, pain, feeling tired, aches, nausea, and vomiting.
For a complete list of side effects, click here for the full Prescribing Information for UCERIS extended release tablets. Be sure to tell your doctor about any side effects that bother you or don't go away.
How do I take UCERIS tablets?
- Take UCERIS tablets exactly as your doctor tells you
- Take UCERIS tablets in the morning
- Take UCERIS tablets whole. DO NOT chew, crush, or break UCERIS tablets before swallowing
- Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice while taking UCERIS tablets
What is the recommended dose for UCERIS tablets?
The recommended dose for UCERIS is one 9-mg tablet to be taken once daily in the morning, with or without food, for up to 8 weeks.
What should I tell my doctor before taking UCERIS tablets?
Before you take UCERIS tablets, tell your doctor if you
- Have liver problems
- Are planning to have surgery
- Have chickenpox or measles or have recently been near anyone with chickenpox or measles
- Have an infection
- Have a family history of diabetes, cataracts, or glaucoma
- Have or had tuberculosis
- Have high blood pressure (hypertension)
- Have decreased bone mineral density (osteoporosis)
- Have stomach ulcers
- Have any other medical condition
- Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if UCERIS tablets will harm your unborn baby
- Are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. UCERIS tablets can pass into breast milk and may harm your baby. You and your doctor should decide if you will take UCERIS tablets or breastfeed. You should not do both
Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter vitamins, and herbal supplements. UCERIS tablets and other medicines may affect each other and cause side effects.
Make sure to tell your doctor if you are taking
- A steroid medicine
- Medicines that suppress your immune system (immunosuppressants)
- Ketoconazole or other medicines that affect how your liver works
Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure if your medicine is one listed above.
What is ulcerative colitis?
UC is a condition that causes inflammation, or areas of redness and swelling, in a part of the large intestine called the colon. Inflammation in the colon can lead to bleeding, production of pus, diarrhea, and abdominal or stomach discomfort. About 700,000 Americans have UC, and it typically first affects people between the ages of 15 and 30. The disease appears equally in men and women.
UC is chronic, meaning it is an ongoing condition with no known cure. It's a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Note that irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a different condition than IBD, and is treated differently.
What is a flare-up of ulcerative colitis?
UC symptoms typically come and go. When symptoms appear, a person is experiencing what is commonly referred to as a "flare-up."
What is remission of ulcerative colitis?
A person with UC may experience months or even years without any symptoms. Any span of time without any symptoms is called "remission."