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cromolyn sodium

Pronunciation

Generic Name: cromolyn sodium (oral) (KRO moe lin SOE dee um)
Brand Name: Gastrocrom

What is cromolyn sodium?

Cromolyn sodium works by preventing the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation.

Cromolyn sodium is used to treat the symptoms of a condition called mastocytosis, which can cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, headaches, stomach pain, itchy skin, and flushing (warmth or redness under the skin).

Cromolyn sodium may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about cromolyn sodium?

Follow all directions on your medicine label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking cromolyn sodium?

You should not use cromolyn sodium if you are allergic to it.

To make sure cromolyn sodium is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • kidney disease; or

  • liver disease.

It is not known whether this medicine will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

It is not known whether cromolyn sodium passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Cromolyn sodium is not approved for use by anyone younger than 2 years old.

How should I take cromolyn sodium?

Cromolyn sodium is usually taken 4 times per day. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Break open the cromolyn sodium ampule and squeeze the liquid into a glass of water. Stir this mixture and drink all of it right away. Do not save for later use.

Take this medicine 30 minutes before each meal, and at bedtime.

Take your doses at regular intervals to keep a steady amount of the drug in your body at all times.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 3 weeks of treatment.

Do not change your doses or medication schedule without your doctor's advice.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

Do not use cromolyn sodium if it looks cloudy, has changed colors, or has particles in it. Call your pharmacist for new medication.

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.

What should I avoid while taking cromolyn sodium?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

Cromolyn sodium side effects

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

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips;

  • swelling of your tongue;

  • trouble swallowing; or

  • tight feeling in the chest.

Common side effects may include:

  • headache, feeling irritable;

  • nausea, diarrhea, stomach pain;

  • rash, itching; or

  • muscle pain.

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)

Cromolyn sodium dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Asthma -- Maintenance:

Administer 20 mg (1 vial) via nebulizer 4 times a day at regular intervals

Prophylaxis of acute bronchospasm due to exercise, exposure to cold dry air, or environmental allergens: 20 mg (1 vial) via nebulizer shortly before anticipated exposure

Comments:
-This drug is a prophylactic agent to be used in patients whose symptoms are sufficiently frequent to require a continuous regimen of medications; the effect is usually evident after several weeks, although some patients show an almost immediate response.
-This drug should not be added to a therapeutic regimen during an acute episode; therapy should be started once asthma is controlled, the airway is cleared, and the patient is able to inhale adequately.

Use: For the management of bronchial asthma

Usual Adult Dose for Systemic Mastocytosis:

Initial dose: 200 mg (2 ampules) orally one-half hour before meals and at bedtime
-If satisfactory control is not achieved within 2 to 3 weeks, may increase dose.
Maintenance dose: May reduce dose to the minimum required to maintain adequate control once a therapeutic response has been achieved.
Maximum dose: 40 mg/kg/day

Comment:
-Use of this product has been associated with improvement in diarrhea, flushing, headaches, vomiting, urticaria, abdominal pain, nausea, and itching in some patients.

Use: For the management of patients with mastocytosis.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Asthma -- Maintenance:

Age: 2 years or older:

Administer 20 mg (1 vial) via nebulizer 4 times a day at regular intervals

Prophylaxis of acute bronchospasm due to exercise, exposure to cold dry air, or environmental allergens: 20 mg (1 vial) via nebulizer shortly before anticipated exposure

Comments:
-This drug is a prophylactic agent to be used in patients whose symptoms are sufficiently frequent to require a continuous regimen of medications; the effect is usually evident after several weeks, although some patients show an almost immediate response.
-This drug should not be added to a therapeutic regimen during an acute episode; therapy should be started once asthma is controlled, the airway is cleared, and the patient is able to inhale adequately.

Use: For the management of bronchial asthma

Usual Pediatric Dose for Systemic Mastocytosis:

Age: 2 to 12 years old:
Initial dose: 100 mg (1 ampule) orally one-half hour before meals and at bedtime

Age: 13 years or older:
Initial dose: 200 mg (2 ampules) orally one-half hour before meals and at bedtime

-If satisfactory control is not achieved within 2 to 3 weeks, may increase dose to no more than 40 mg/kg/day.
Maintenance dose: Once a therapeutic response has been achieved, the dose may be reduced to the minimum required to maintain adequate control.
Maximum dose: 40 mg/kg/day

Comment:
-Use of this product has been associated with improvement in diarrhea, flushing, headaches, vomiting, urticaria, abdominal pain, nausea, and itching in some patients.
-Not recommended for patients less than 2 years of age unless the potential benefits clearly outweigh the risks.

Use: For the management of patients with mastocytosis.

What other drugs will affect cromolyn sodium?

Other drugs may interact with cromolyn sodium, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now and any medicine you start or stop using.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about cromolyn sodium.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication 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 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 3.02.

Date modified: March 15, 2017
Last reviewed: September 22, 2016

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