Singulair

Pronunciation

Generic Name: montelukast (mon te LOO kast)
Brand Names: Singulair

What is Singulair?

Singulair is a leukotriene (loo-koe-TRY-een) inhibitor. Leukotrienes are chemicals your body releases when you breathe in an allergen (such as pollen). These chemicals cause swelling in your lungs and tightening of the muscles around your airways, which can result in asthma symptoms.

Singulair is used to prevent asthma attacks in adults and children as young as 12 months old. Singulair is also used to prevent exercise-induced bronchospasm in adults and children who are at least 6 years old.

Singulair is also used to treat symptoms of year-round (perennial) allergies in adults and children who are at least 6 months old. It is also used to treat symptoms of seasonal allergies in adults and children who are at least 2 years old.

Do not give Singulair to a child without a doctor's advice.

Singulair is also used to prevent exercise-induced bronchoconstriction (narrowing of the air passages in the lungs) in adults and teenagers who are at least 15 years old and are not already taking this medicine for other conditions.

If you already take Singulair to prevent asthma or allergy symptoms, do not use an extra dose to treat exercise-induced bronchoconstriction.

Singulair may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide

What is the most important information I should know about Singulair?

Singulair will not work fast enough to treat an asthma attack that has already begun. Use only a fast-acting inhalation medicine to treat an asthma attack. Talk with your doctor if any of your asthma medications do not seem to work as well in treating or preventing attacks.

Slideshow: Asthma - 10 Things You Need To Do To Keep It In Check

It may take up to several weeks before your symptoms improve. Keep using the medication as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after several weeks of treatment.

Call your doctor right away if you feel that this medicine is not working as well as usual, or if it makes your condition worse. If it seems like you need to use more of any of your medications in a 24-hour period, talk with your doctor.

If you already take Singulair to prevent asthma or allergy symptoms, do not use it for exercise-induced bronchoconstriction.

Call your doctor at once if you have any mood or behavior changes, anxiety, depression, or thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking Singulair?

Do not use Singulair if you are allergic to montelukast.

The chewable tablet form of Singulair may contain phenylalanine. Talk to your doctor before using this form of Singulair if you have phenylketonuria (PKU).

FDA pregnancy category B. Singulair is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether Singulair passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use Singulair without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

See also: Pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)

How should I take Singulair?

Take Singulair exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Singulair is usually taken once daily in the evening for prevention of asthma or allergy symptoms. For exercise-induced bronchoconstriction, take a single dose at least 2 hours before you exercise, and do not take another dose for at least 24 hours. Follow your doctor's instructions.

If you already take Singulair to prevent asthma or allergy symptoms, do not use it for exercise-induced bronchoconstriction.

Swallow the regular tablet whole, with a glass of water.

The chewable tablet must be chewed completely before you swallow it.

The oral granules can be placed directly into the mouth and swallowed, or mixed with a spoonful of applesauce, mashed carrots, rice, or ice cream. Oral granules can also be mixed with 1 teaspoon of baby formula or breast milk. Do not use any other type of liquid for mixing the granules. Other liquids can be taken before or after taking the medicine.

After opening or mixing the oral granules, you must use them within 15 minutes. Do not save an open packet or mixed medicine for later use.

Singulair will not work fast enough to treat an asthma attack that has already begun. Use only a fast-acting inhalation medicine to treat an asthma attack. Talk with your doctor if any of your asthma medications do not seem to work as well in treating or preventing attacks.

It may take up to several weeks before your symptoms improve. Keep using Singulair as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after several weeks of treatment.

Asthma is usually treated with a combination of drugs. Use all medications as directed by your doctor. Read the medication guide or patient instructions provided with each medication. Do not change your doses or medication schedulewithout your doctor's advice, even if you have no asthma symptoms.

If you also take a steroid asthma medicine, do not stop using it suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

Call your doctor right away if you feel that this medicine is not working as well as usual, or if it makes your condition worse. If it seems like you need to use more of any of your medications in a 24-hour period, talk with your doctor.

Store Singulair at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not open a packet of oral granules until you are ready to use the medicine.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Symptoms of a Singulair overdose are not known.

What should I avoid?

Avoid situations or activities that may trigger an asthma attack.

If your asthma symptoms get worse when you take aspirin, avoid taking aspirin or other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) while you are taking montelukast. NSAIDs include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn, Naprelan, Treximet), celecoxib (Celebrex), diclofenac (Arthrotec, Cambia, Cataflam, Voltaren, Flector Patch, Pennsaid, Solareze), indomethacin (Indocin), meloxicam (Mobic), and others.

Singulair side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Singulair: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • skin rash, bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness;

  • mood or behavior changes, anxiety, depression, or thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself;

  • tremors or shaking;

  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin;

  • severe sinus pain, swelling, or irritation;

  • worsening asthma symptoms; or

  • severe skin reaction - fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain, followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling.

Less serious Singulair side effects may include:

  • headache;

  • stomach pain, heartburn, upset stomach, nausea, diarrhea;

  • tooth pain;

  • tired feeling;

  • fever, stuffy nose, sore throat, cough, hoarseness; or

  • mild rash.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

What other drugs will affect Singulair?

Before using Singulair, tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • phenobarbital (Luminal, Solfoton); or

  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with Singulair. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about Singulair.

What does my medication look like?

Montelukast is available with a prescription under the brand name Singulair. Other brand or generic formulations may also be available. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about Singulair, especially if it is new to you.

  • Singulair 4 mg chewable tablets - pink, oval tablets

  • Singulair 5 mg chewable tablets - pink, round tablets

  • Singulair 10 mg - beige, rounded-square shaped, film-coated tablets

  • Singulair Oral granules 4 mg-white granules

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Singulair only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2014 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 12.02. Revision Date: 2012-04-17, 3:25:43 PM.

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