Colazal is commonly prescribed to treat ulcerative colitis, a condition that causes inflammation in the colon. The drug is thought to work by decreasing the production of certain chemicals that lead to inflammation. Colazal comes in capsule form, and is typically taken three times a day. Common side effects of this medicine can include abdominal pain (or stomach pain), diarrhea, and joint pain.
Colazal belongs to a group of medications called aminosalicylates. It is thought that the drug works by inhibiting the production of inflammatory chemicals in the lining of the colon. The medication decreases the production of prostaglandins and leukotrienes, chemicals that lead to the inflammation associated with ulcerative colitis.
The Colazal molecule itself is inactive. However, when it reaches the colon, bacteria enzymes split the Colazal molecule, releasing the active forms of the medication.
Effects of Colazal
In previous clinical studies, after eight weeks of taking Colazal, up to 55 percent of people had less blood in the stool, compared to just 35 percent of those not taking it. The drug also helped people have fewer trips to the toilet.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed February 5, 2008.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 7th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2005.
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