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Budesonide (Systemic, Oral Inhalation) (byoo DES oh nide)

Adult Medication

Brand Names: U.S.

Entocort EC; Pulmicort; Pulmicort Flexhaler; Uceris

Brand Names: Canada

Entocort; Pulmicort Turbuhaler

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to treat asthma.
  • It is used to treat Crohn’s disease.
  • It is used to treat ulcerative colitis.
  • It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take this drug?

All products:

  • If you have an allergy to budesonide or any other part of this drug.
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.

All products for breathing in:

  • If you are having a breathing attack.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this drug.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take this drug with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take this drug?

All products:

  • Tell dentists, surgeons, and other doctors that you use this drug.
  • Have your blood work checked often. Talk with your doctor.
  • Have a bone density test. Talk with your doctor.
  • Have your eye pressure checked if you are on this drug for a long time. Talk with your doctor.
  • If you have been taking this drug for many weeks, talk with your doctor before stopping. You may want to slowly stop this drug.
  • You may have more chance of getting an infection. Wash hands often. Stay away from people with infections, colds, or flu.
  • Chickenpox and measles can be very bad or even deadly in some people taking steroid drugs like this drug. Avoid being near anyone with chickenpox or measles if you have not had these health problems before. If you have been exposed to chickenpox or measles, talk with your doctor.
  • This drug may cause weak bones (osteoporosis) with long-term use. Talk with your doctor to see if you have a higher chance of weak bones or if you have any questions.
  • Talk with your doctor before getting any vaccines. Use with this drug may either raise the chance of an infection or make the vaccine not work as well.
  • Long-term use may raise the chance of cataracts or glaucoma. Talk with the doctor.
  • If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), you will need to watch your blood sugar closely.
  • If you are 65 or older, use this drug with care. You could have more side effects.
  • This drug may affect growth in children and teens in some cases. They may need regular growth checks. Talk with the doctor.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug while you are pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.

Tablets and capsules:

  • This drug may lower how much natural steroid is in your body. If you have a fever, an infection, surgery, or you are hurt, talk with your doctor. You may need extra doses of oral steroids. These extra steroids will help your body deal with these stresses. Carry a warning card saying that there may be times when you need extra steroids.
  • Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice.
  • You may need to lower how much salt is in your diet and take extra potassium. Talk with your doctor.
  • Talk with your doctor before you drink wine, beer, or mixed drinks.

All products for breathing in:

  • When changing from an oral steroid to a breathed in one, there may be very bad and sometimes deadly side effects. Signs like weakness, feeling tired, dizziness, upset stomach, throwing up, not thinking clearly, or low blood sugar may happen. Call your doctor right away if you have any of these signs. If you have a bad injury, have surgery, or any type of infection, you may need extra doses of oral steroids. These extra steroids will help your body deal with these stresses. Carry a warning card saying that there may be times when you may need extra steroids.
  • If your normal short-acting puffer (inhaler) dose does not work well, you need to use your short-acting puffer more often than normal, or your breathing gets worse, call your doctor right away.
  • This drug is not helpful during an asthma attack.
  • Do not use this drug to treat an asthma attack. Use a rescue inhaler. Talk with your doctor.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of high blood sugar like confusion, feeling sleepy, more thirst, more hungry, passing urine more often, flushing, fast breathing, or breath that smells like fruit.
  • Signs of infection. These include a fever of 100.5°F (38°C) or higher, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, wound that will not heal, or anal itching or pain.
  • Signs of low potassium levels like muscle pain or weakness, muscle cramps, or a heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • Feeling very tired, weak, or touchy; trembling; having a fast heartbeat, confusion, sweating, or dizziness if you missed a dose or recently stopped this drug.
  • Shortness of breath, a big weight gain, swelling in the arms or legs.
  • Very bad headache.
  • A fast heartbeat.
  • A heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • Chest pain or pressure.
  • Redness or white patches in mouth or throat.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Bone or joint pain.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • Mood changes.
  • Change in how you act.
  • Low mood (depression).
  • Seizures.
  • A burning, numbness, or tingling feeling that is not normal.
  • Very bad belly pain.
  • Any bruising or bleeding.
  • Black, tarry, or bloody stools.
  • Throwing up blood or throw up that looks like coffee grounds.

All products for breathing in:

  • This drug can cause very bad breathing problems right after you take a dose. Sometimes, this may be life-threatening. If you have trouble breathing, breathing that is worse, wheezing, or coughing after using this drug, use a rescue inhaler and get medical help right away.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

Tablets and capsules:

  • Headache.
  • Upset stomach.
  • Change in body fat.
  • Skin changes (pimples, stretch marks, slow healing, hair growth).
  • Not able to sleep.
  • Restlessness.
  • Sweating a lot.
  • Belly pain.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Gas.
  • Hard stools (constipation).
  • Bloating.
  • Back pain.
  • Dizziness.

Liquid for breathing in:

  • Cough.
  • Nosebleed.

All products for breathing in:

  • Stuffy nose.
  • Runny nose.
  • Nose and throat irritation.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best taken?

Use this drug as ordered by your doctor. Read and follow the dosing on the label closely.

All products:

  • To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
  • Take as you have been told, even if you feel well.

Tablets and capsules:

  • Take in the morning if taking once a day.
  • Take with or without food. Take with food if it causes an upset stomach.
  • Swallow whole. Do not chew, break, or crush.

Puffer (inhaler):

  • For breathing in only.
  • Prime puffer (inhaler) before first use by twisting brown grip as far as it will go both ways. Then repeat twisting.
  • Have your puffer (inhaler) use checked with your doctor at each visit. Read and follow facts on how to use the puffer. Make sure you use the puffer the right way.
  • Do not use a spacer with the puffer (inhaler).
  • If you are using more than 1 type of puffer (inhaler), ask your doctor which puffer to use first.

Liquid for breathing in:

  • For breathing in only as a liquid (solution) by a special machine (nebulizer) into the lungs.
  • Follow how to use as you have been told by your doctor or read the package insert.
  • Do not mix other drugs in nebulizer.
  • Shake well before use.
  • Wash face if using a face mask.
  • If you are using a puffer (inhaler), wait 10 minutes before using this drug.

All products for breathing in:

  • Rinse out mouth after each use.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

How do I store and/or throw out this drug?

Tablets and capsules:

  • Store at room temperature.

Puffer (inhaler):

  • Store at room temperature. Throw away after date shown on the puffer (inhaler).

Liquid for breathing in:

  • Store upright at room temperature. Throw away any part not used after 2 weeks.
  • Protect from light.

All products:

  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.

General drug facts

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else’s drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

Copyright

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