Information on Tablets A-Z
Generic name: Montelukast sodium
Why is this drug prescribed: Singulair is used for long-term prevention of asthma. It reduces the swelling and inflammation that tend to close up the airways, and relaxes the walls of the bronchial tubes, expanding the airways and permitting more air to pass through.
Most important fact about this drug: Singulair alleviates the on-going symptoms of asthma, but it won't stop an acute asthma attack. For that you need a fast-acting, orally inhaled airway opener such as Alupent or Proventil.
How should you take this medication: Take a Singulair tablet regularly every evening, whether or not you have any symptoms. The tablet can be taken with or without food. --If you miss a dose... Take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once. --Storage information... Store at room temperature, away from moisture and light.
What side effects may occur: Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Singulair. Side effects may include: Abdominal pain, abnormal dreams, allergic reaction, bronchitis, bruising, cough, dental pain, diarrhea, difficulty breathing or swallowing, dizziness, drowsiness, ear infection, ear pain, eczema, eye inflammation, fatigue, fever, flu, hallucinations, headache, hives, indigestion and other digestive problems, infection, insomnia, irritability, itching, laryngitis, leg pain, muscle aches and cramps, nasal congestion, nausea, pancreatitis, pneumonia, rash, restlessness, runny nose, seizures, sinus pain, skin inflammation, sneezing, sore throat, swelling due to fluid retention, swelling of the mouth or throat, tendency to bleed easily, thirst, viral infection, vomiting
Why should this drug not be prescribed: If Singulair gives you an allergic reaction, you cannot continue using the drug.
Special warnings about this medication: After you begin taking Singulair, your doctor may be able to slowly reduce the dosage of other asthma medications such as inhaled steroids. However, Singulair is not a complete replacement for such drugs, so you should not abruptly stop using them unless your doctor recommends it. If your asthma symptoms get worse or you develop a rash, numbness, or heart problems as you reduce your dose of steroids, check with your doctor. Such reactions usually result from a reduction in oral steroid therapy. If your asthma gets worse after exercise, you'll need to continue using a short-acting inhaled airway opener to prevent the problem and relieve attacks. If you are allergic to aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), you should continue to avoid them. Singulair does not remedy this problem. If you have difficulty breathing while taking Singulair, or find that you need your orally inhaled bronchodilator more often than usual (or require more puffs than prescribed), notify your doctor. If you have a child with phenylketonuria--an inability to process phenylalanine that quickly leads to mental retardation--you should be aware that Singulair chewable tablets contains this substance.
Possible food and drug interactions when taking this medication: If Singulair is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Singulair with the following: Phenobarbital Rifampin (Rifadin, Rifamate, Rimactane)
Special information if you are pregnant or breastfeeding: Singulair should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. It is not known whether Singulair appears in breast milk. Because many drugs do make their way into breast milk, use Singulair with caution if you are breastfeeding.
Recommended dosage: ADULTS AND CHILDREN 15 AND OVER: The usual dose is one 10-milligram tablet once a day in the evening. CHILDREN 6 TO 14 YEARS OLD: The usual dose is one 5-milligram chewable tablet once a day in the evening. CHILDREN 2 TO 5 YEARS OLD: The dosage is one 4-milligram chewable tablet per day, taken in the evening. Safety and effectiveness have not been studied in children under 2.
Overdosage: Little is known about the effects of Singulair overdose. However, any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. If you suspect an overdose, seek medical attention immediately.