Generic Name: pentosan polysulfate sodium (Oral route)

PEN-toe-san pol-ee-SUL-fate SOE-dee-um

Commonly used brand name(s)

In the U.S.

  • Elmiron

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Capsule

Therapeutic Class: Cystitis Agent

Uses For Elmiron

Pentosan is used to relieve the symptoms of the bladder condition called interstitial cystitis.

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This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription.

Before Using Elmiron

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Studies on this medicine have been done only in adult patients, and there is no specific information comparing use of pentosan in children with use in other age groups.

Geriatric

This medicine has been tested and has not been shown to cause different side effects or problems in older people than it does in younger adults.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters B Animal studies have revealed no evidence of harm to the fetus, however, there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR animal studies have shown an adverse effect, but adequate studies in pregnant women have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus.

Breast Feeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Interactions with Medicines

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Aceclofenac
  • Acemetacin
  • Acenocoumarol
  • Alteplase, Recombinant
  • Amtolmetin Guacil
  • Anistreplase
  • Apixaban
  • Argatroban
  • Aspirin
  • Bivalirudin
  • Bromfenac
  • Bufexamac
  • Celecoxib
  • Chamomile
  • Choline Salicylate
  • Citalopram
  • Clonixin
  • Dabigatran Etexilate
  • Dalteparin
  • Danaparoid
  • Desirudin
  • Desvenlafaxine
  • Dexibuprofen
  • Dexketoprofen
  • Diclofenac
  • Diflunisal
  • Dipyrone
  • Drotrecogin Alfa
  • Enoxaparin
  • Escitalopram
  • Etodolac
  • Etofenamate
  • Etoricoxib
  • Felbinac
  • Fenoprofen
  • Fepradinol
  • Feprazone
  • Floctafenine
  • Flufenamic Acid
  • Fluoxetine
  • Flurbiprofen
  • Fluvoxamine
  • Fondaparinux
  • Garlic
  • Heparin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Ibuprofen Lysine
  • Indomethacin
  • Ketoprofen
  • Ketorolac
  • Lepirudin
  • Lornoxicam
  • Loxoprofen
  • Lumiracoxib
  • Meclofenamate
  • Mefenamic Acid
  • Meloxicam
  • Milnacipran
  • Morniflumate
  • Nabumetone
  • Naproxen
  • Nepafenac
  • Niflumic Acid
  • Nimesulide
  • Oxaprozin
  • Oxyphenbutazone
  • Papaya
  • Parecoxib
  • Paroxetine
  • Phenindione
  • Phenprocoumon
  • Phenylbutazone
  • Piketoprofen
  • Piroxicam
  • Pranoprofen
  • Proglumetacin
  • Propyphenazone
  • Proquazone
  • Protein C, Human
  • Reteplase, Recombinant
  • Rivaroxaban
  • Rofecoxib
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Salsalate
  • Sertraline
  • Sodium Salicylate
  • St John's Wort
  • Streptokinase
  • Sulindac
  • Tan-Shen
  • Tenecteplase
  • Tenoxicam
  • Tiaprofenic Acid
  • Tinzaparin
  • Tolfenamic Acid
  • Tolmetin
  • Urokinase
  • Valdecoxib
  • Venlafaxine
  • Warfarin

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Avocado
  • Chondroitin
  • Coenzyme Q10
  • Curcumin
  • Dong Quai
  • Ginger
  • Vitamin A

Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Blood or blood vessel disease or other blood problems or
  • Blockage or obstruction of the intestine or
  • Polyps or
  • Stomach ulcers—The risk of bleeding may be increased.
  • Liver disease or
  • Spleen problems—Pentosan may not be broken down in the body as fast as it normally would; the chance of side effects may be increased.

Proper Use of Elmiron

Take this medicine on an empty stomach (at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals) and at least 1 hour before or after any other food, milk, or medicine. Also, always take it with a full glass (8 ounces) of water.

Sometimes pentosan must be taken for up to 3 to 6 months before you begin to feel better. Your doctor should check your progress at regular visits during this time.

It is important that you follow any special instructions from your doctor. Some foods and beverages may aggravate your condition. Also, make certain your doctor knows if you are on any special diet, such as a low-sodium or low-sugar diet.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (capsules):
    • To treat interstitial cystitis:
      • Adults—100 milligrams (mg) three times a day for three months. Your doctor may tell you to repeat this dose.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Precautions While Using Elmiron

This medicine may increase the risk of serious bleeding. Before having any kind of surgery or dental or emergency treatment, tell the medical doctor or dentist in charge that you are using this medicine.

Check with your doctor before taking anticoagulant therapy (drugs that thin your blood) such as warfarin sodium, heparin, high doses of aspirin, or antiinflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen .

Pentosan can temporarily lower the number of platelets in your blood, which are necessary for proper blood clotting. If this occurs, there are certain precautions you can take to reduce the risk of bleeding:

  • Check with your doctor immediately if you notice any unusual bleeding or bruising; black, tarry stools; blood in urine or stools; or pinpoint red spots on your skin.
  • Be careful when using a regular toothbrush, dental floss, or toothpick. Your medical doctor, dentist, or nurse may recommend other ways to clean your teeth and gums.
  • Be careful not to cut yourself when you are using sharp objects such as a safety razor or fingernail or toenail cutters.
  • Avoid contact sports or other situations where bruising or injury could occur .

It is important that you follow any special dietary instructions from your doctor. Some foods and beverages may aggravate your condition.

Elmiron Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:

Rare
  • Chills
  • difficulty in breathing
  • fever
  • skin rash or hives
  • sore throat
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vision impairment

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common or rare
  • Abdominal pain
  • bleeding gums
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • difficulty or pain upon swallowing
  • dizziness
  • dryness of throat
  • hair loss
  • headache
  • heartburn
  • increased sensitivity of skin to sunlight
  • irritated or red eyes
  • itching
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea
  • nosebleed
  • ringing in the ears
  • runny nose
  • sores in mouth
  • stomach gas
  • stomach upset
  • vomiting

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

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