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Colchicine: Treatment for Gouty Arthritis

Colchicine is an antigout agent used to treat and prevent pain associated with gouty arthritis. It prevents gout attacks by removing extra uric acid from the body.

What is gouty arthritis?

Gouty arthritis is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness and tenderness in joints.

The symptoms of gout are almost always acute, occurring suddenly — often at night — and without warning. They include:

  • Intense joint pain. Gout usually affects the large joint of your big toe but can occur in your feet, ankles, knees, hands and wrists. The pain typically lasts five to 10 days and then stops. The discomfort subsides gradually over one to two weeks, leaving the joint apparently normal and pain-free.
  • Inflammation and redness. The affected joint or joints become swollen, tender and red.

Important Colchicine information

This medication is not effective for all types of pain and is not considered an analgesic (painkilling) drug. Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while using Colchicine.

Stop taking this medicine immediately and check with your doctor as soon as possible if severe diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, or stomach pain occurs while you are taking this medicine.

Before using Colchicine tell your doctor if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in this medicine or to similar medications
  • you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breast-feeding
  • you are taking blood thinners
  • you have stomach problems
  • you have peptic ulcers
  • you have any other medical conditions like liver or kidney function impairment or heart problems

Colchicine side effects

Most common side effects: Diarrhea, nausea, stomach pain, vomiting.

Severe side effects: Allergic reaction (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); muscle aches, fever; infection; numbness or tingling; severe diarrhea; sore throat; tiredness; unusual bleeding or bruising; weakness; bone marrow depression; aplastic anemia; thrombocytopenia; hair loss; reversible azoospermia.

This information is advisory only. It does not contain all information about this medication. If you have any questions about Colchicine, ask your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

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