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Singulair

What is Singulair

Singulair is a leukotriene (loo-koe-try-een) inhibitor. Leukotrienes are substances in the body that are associated with the inflammation and constriction of airway muscles and the accumulation of fluid in the lungs, all of which occur during an asthma attack.

Singulair is used to prevent asthma attacks. Singulair is also used in the treatment of seasonal nasal allergies.

Singulair may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

General medical information about Singulair

Singulair will not stop an asthma attack that has already begun. It is used to prevent asthmatic attacks.

Use Singulair on a regular basis for best results. It may take several weeks to get the maximum effect of this medication.

Seek medical attention if you notice that you require more than your usual or more than the maximum amount of any asthma medication in a 24-hour period. An increased need for medication could be an early sign of a serious asthma attack.

What you should find out before taking Singulair

Before taking Singulair, tell your doctor if you have liver disease. You may not be able to take Singulair, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you have liver disease.

The 4 mg chewable Singulair tablets contain 0.674 mg phenylalanine and the 5 mg chewable Singulair tablets contain 0.842 mg phenylalanine. Individuals with phenylketonuria (PKU) may need to monitor their intake of this additive.

Singulair is in the FDA pregnancy category B. This means that it is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not, however, take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.

It is not known whether Singulair passes into breast milk. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should take Singulair

Take Singulair exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Singulair is usually taken in the evening. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Swallow the regular tablets with a glass of water.

Chew the chewable tablets thoroughly before swallowing.

The granules can be given either directly into the mouth or mixed with a spoonful of cold or room temperature applesauce, mashed carrots, rice, or ice cream. The packet should not be opened until ready to use. After opening the packet, the full dose must be administered within 15 minutes. Never store any mixed or unmixed granules for use after 15 minutes. The granules are not intended to be dissolved in liquid however, liquids may be taken after administration of the medication.

Singulair can be taken with or without food.

Do not stop taking Singulair without first talking to your doctor. It may be some time before you begin to notice effects from this medication.

Continue taking any other asthma medications, as directed by your doctor.

Singulair will not stop an asthma attack that has already begun. Keep another medication on hand to treat attacks.

Seek medical attention if you notice that you require more than your usual or more than the maximum amount of any asthma medication in a 24-hour period. An increased need for medication could be an early sign of a serious asthma attack.

Store Singulair at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

If you miss a dose:

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take the next regularly scheduled dose as directed. Do not take a double dose of this medication.

What happens if you overdose:

Seek emergency medical attention.

The symptoms of an overdose of Singulair are unknown.

Avoid while taking Singulair

Avoid items or activities that may trigger an asthma attack.

Possible side effects of Singulair

If you experience any of the following serious side effects, stop taking Singulair and seek emergency medical attention or notify your doctor immediately:
- an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
- numbness, tingling, or pain;
- a rash or unexplained open sores or bruising;
- a flu-like illness;
- severe inflammation (pain and swelling) of the sinuses; or
- worsening respiratory symptoms.

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take Singulair and talk to your doctor if you experience
- upset stomach, stomach pain, or heartburn;
- dizziness or headache;
- tiredness;
- sore throat or cough, or
- nasal irritation.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect Singulair

Before taking Singulair, tell your doctor if you are taking rifampin (Rimactane, Rifadin) or phenobarbital (Luminal, Solfoton). You may not be able to take Singulair, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during your treatment.

Drugs other than those listed here may also interact with Singulair. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines, including herbal products.

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