How does this medication work? What will it do for me?

Colchicine belongs to the class of medications called anti-inflammatories.Although exactly how it works has not been determined, extended releasecolchicine is used to reduce  cardiovascularrisks for people who have plaque buildup in their arteries. Plaque buildupcan narrow the arteries and decrease blood flow to the heart. This medicationis intended to be used in addition to standard treatment for atherosclerosis,including cholesterol reduction and the use of blood thinners. Colchicine isbelieved to reduce inflammation of the blood vessels.

Thismedication may be available under multiple brand names and/or in severaldifferent forms. Any specific brand name of thismedication may not be available in all of the forms or approved for all of theconditions discussed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not beused for all of the conditions discussed here.

Yourdoctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than thoselisted in these drug information articles. If youhave not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are takingthis medication, speak to your doctor. Donot stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.

Donot give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms asyou do. It can be harmful for people to take thismedication if their doctor has not prescribed it.

What form(s) does this medication come in?

Eachblue-green, round, biconvex, coated tablet, with a translucent to white finishand debossed with "P" on one side and "05" on the other side, contains 0.5 mg ofcolchicine. Nonmedicinal ingredients: ammonium methacrylate copolymer,FD&C Blue #1, glyceryl monostearate, invert sugar syrup, iron oxide yellow,magnesium stearate, maltodextrin, polyethylene glycol, polyvinyl alcohol-parthydrolyzed, polysorbate 80, povidone, sodium starch glycolate, sucrose, talc,titanium dioxide, triethylcitrate, and water.

How should I use this medication?

The recommended daily dose of colchicine extended release is one0.5 mg tablet taken by mouth, once daily. Colchicine extended-release maybe taken with or without food. Avoid consuming grapefruit juice while you areusing this medication.

Many things can affect the dose ofmedication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions,and other medications. If your doctorhas recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not changethe way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.

It is important to take thismedication exactly as prescribed by your doctor.

If you miss a dose, take it as soon aspossible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for yournext dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up fora missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing adose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.

Store this medication at room temperature,protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.

Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.

Who should NOT take this medication?

Donot take this medication if you:

  • are allergic to colchicine or any ingredients of the medication
  • have severely decreased liver function
  • have severely decreased kidney function
  • have blood disorders
  • are taking any of the following medications:
    • clarithromycin
    • cyclosporine
    • HIVprotease inhibitors (e.g., atazanavir, darunavir, indinavir, lopinavir,nelfinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir, tipranavir)
    • itraconazole
    • ketoconazole
    • ranolazine
    • telithromycin

What side effects are possible with this medication?

Manymedications can cause side effects. A side effectis an unwanted response to a medication when it is taken in normal doses. Sideeffects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent.

The side effects listed below are notexperienced by everyone who takes this medication. If you are concerned about side effects, discuss the risks and benefitsof this medication with your doctor.

The following side effects have beenreported by at least 1% of people taking this medication. Many of these sideeffects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over time.

Contactyour doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe orbothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.

  • diarrhea
  • nausea
  • stomach cramps or pain
  • vomiting

Althoughmost of the side effects listed below don't happen very often, they could leadto serious problems if you do not seek medical attention.

Checkwith your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effectsoccur:

  • numbness or tingling in yourfingers or toes
  • signs of anemia (low red bloodcells; e.g., dizziness, pale skin, unusual tiredness or weakness, shortness ofbreath)
  • symptoms of cholestasis(decreased bile flow from the liver; e.g., yellowing of the skin or whites ofeyes, dark urine, light coloured stools, loss of appetite)

Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the followingoccur:

  • signs of a severe skin reactionsuch as blistering, peeling, a rash covering a large area of the body, a rashthat spreads quickly, or a rash combined with fever or discomfort
  • unusual muscle weakness or pain

Somepeople may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries youwhile you are taking this medication.

Are there any other precautions or warnings for this medication?

Beforeyou begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about yourhealth. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.

Blood counts: Thismedication can decrease the number of neutrophils (a type of white bloodcell that helps fight infection), red blood cells (which carry oxygen), and platelets (which help your blood to clot). Your doctor will do blood tests to monitorthis. If you notice any signs of infection (e.g., fever, chills, or sorethroat) or unusual bleeding or bruising, contact your doctor immediately.

Kidney function: People whohave reduced kidney function may be at an increased risk of developing kidneyfailure. If you have reduced kidney function or kidney disease, discuss withyour doctor how this medication may affect your medical condition, how yourmedical condition may affect the dosing and effectiveness of this medication,and whether any special monitoring is needed.

Liver function:  Liver disease or reduced liver function maycause this medication to build up in the body, causing side effects. If youhave liver problems, discuss with your doctor how this medication may affectyour medical condition, how your medical condition may affect the dosing andeffectiveness of this medication, and whether any special monitoring is needed.Your doctor may want to test your liver function regularly with blood testswhile you are taking this medication.

Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless thebenefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking thismedication, contact your doctor immediately.

Breast-feeding: This medication passes into breast milk. If you are abreast-feeding mother and are taking colchicine extended-release, it may affectyour baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continuebreast-feeding. affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you shouldcontinue breast-feeding.

Children: The safety and effectiveness of using this medication have not beenestablished for children.

Seniors: Adults over the age of 65  may be at ahigher risk of side effects from this medication.

What other drugs could interact with this medication?

There may be an interaction between colchicineextended-release and any of the following:

  • amiodarone
  • aprepitant
  • ‘azole' antifungals (e.g., fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, voriconazole)
  • carvedilol
  • cobicistat
  • conivaptan
  • cyclosporine
  • digoxin
  • diltiazem
  • dronedarone
  • fenofibrate
  • elagolix
  • eliglustat
  • gemfibrozil
  • grapefruit juice
  • hepatitis C antivirals (e.g., glecaprevir and pibrentasvir, ledipasvir, velpatasvir)
  • HIV protease inhibitors (e.g., atazanavir, indinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir, tipranavir)
  • lumacaftor and ivacaftor
  • macrolide antibiotics (e.g., clarithromycin, erythromycin)
  • mifepristone
  • multivitamin and mineral supplements
  • propafenone
  • protein kinase inhibitors (e.g., imatinib, lapatinib, nilotinib, ribociclib)
  • quinine
  • quinidine
  • ranolazine
  • "statin" cholesterol-lowering medications (e.g., atorvastatin, lovastatin, simvastatin)
  • tacrolimus
  • verapamil
  • Vitamin B12

If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctoror pharmacist. Depending on your specificcircumstances, your doctor may want you to:

  • stop taking one of the medications,
  • change one of the medications to another,
  • change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or
  • leave everything as is.

An interaction between two medications does not always mean that youmust stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctorabout how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.

Medications other than those listed above may interact with thismedication. Tell your doctor or prescriber aboutall prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medicationsyou are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine,alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action ofmany medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.

All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2024. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: