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Zyloprim (allopurinol), also known as Lopurin, is a xanthine oxidase inhibitor which reduces levels of uric acid by disrupting the process which creates it in the body. Most commonly the medication is used to:
With the exception of use in cancer therapy, results are often enhanced by making lifestyle changes, such as diet, which further reduces uric acid production. In many cases lifestyle changes are enough to manage uric acid levels over the long run and treatment with Zyloprim may be discontinued; otherwise treatment may continue indefinitely.
Zyloprim comes in tablets ranging from 100 to 300 mg. Tablets may be taken with or without food, but many patients find gastrointestinal side effects are considerably reduce if tablets are taken on a full stomach.
Staying hydrated is important throughout treatment. Tablets should be taken with a full glass of fluid, and ideally enough fluids should be consumed throughout the day to produce at least 2 liters of urine output each day.
Zyloprim for Gout
In gout, Zyloprim is used to reduce the frequency of flare-ups, and to reduce the severity of flare-ups when they do happen. This is, however, a long term effect; Zyloprim provides no benefit as far as reducing the immediate pain and inflammation that occurs during a gout attack. Other medications may be taken as-needed to manage pain and other symptoms.
Treatment is usually individualized, taking into consideration the severity of the gout, uric acid levels, other medical conditions, and so forth. Rough guidelines for otherwise healthy adults are as follows:
It will take one to three weeks of treatment at an effective dose before uric acid levels are stabilized and improvements begin to be noticeable. It may take several months of treatment for full effects to be realized.
Prevention & Dissolution of Kidney Stones
Like gout, uric acid kidney stones are a potential side effect of chronically high uric acid levels. Reducing uric acid levels to normal ranges with Zyloprim can prevent this very painful condition.
The medication can also be used to dissolve existing uric acid kidney stones, though it will have little effect on other types of kidney stones. It may also be tried when there is no clear cause for existing stones and composition is unclear.
In otherwise healthy adults treatment is typically as follows:
Uric acid levels should return to normal 1 to 3 weeks after starting treatment. It may take several months or longer to fully dissolve stones.
Preventing Uric Acid Elevation in Cancer Therapy
Uric acid levels can become elevated during cancer treatments which cause a large die-off of cells, such as radiation therapy or chemotherapy. Zyloprim interrupts the process of converting cell components to uric acid.
Because cancer therapy tends to be highly individualized and relatively complex there may be considerable differences in dosage and administration of Zyloprim:
Note that Zyloprim is known to interact with other medications commonly used to treat cancer; double-check with a doctor or pharmacist before mixing medications if unsure of safety.
No current Rx required
Medicines have benefits and some have risks. Always read the label and use only as directed. If symptoms persist or you have side effects see your health professional.