What is febuxostat?
Febuxostat reduces the production of uric acid in your body. A build-up of uric acid can cause gout symptoms.
Febuxostat is used to keep uric acid levels from getting to high in people with gout.
Febuxostat is for use only in people who cannot take another medicine called allopurinol, or when allopurinol has stopped working.
Febuxostat may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Taking febuxostat may increase your risk of serious or fatal heart problems. Seek medical attention if you have chest pain, trouble breathing, fast heartbeats, sudden severe headache, numbness or weakness on one side of your body, or problems with vision or speech.
You should not use febuxostat if you also use azathioprine or mercaptopurine.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use febuxostat if you are allergic to it, or if you also use:
- azathioprine; or
Taking febuxostat may increase your risk of serious or fatal heart problems. Talk with your doctor about the risks and benefits of febuxostat.
Tell your doctor if you have ever had:
- heart problems;
- a heart attack or stroke;
- liver or kidney disease;
- Lesch-Nyhan syndrome; or
- an organ transplant (kidney, liver, lung, heart).
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
How should I take febuxostat?
Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose. Use the medicine exactly as directed.
You may take febuxostat with or without food. Febuxostat may be taken with an antacid if needed.
You may have an increase in gout symptoms (flares) when you first start taking febuxostat. Your doctor may prescribe other medications for you to use during the first 6 months of treatment with febuxostat.
You should not stop using febuxostat suddenly. Stopping suddenly may make your condition worse.
For best results, keep using your medications as directed. Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 6 months, or if they get worse.
You will need frequent blood tests to check your liver function.
Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at one time.
What should I avoid while taking febuxostat?
Follow your doctor’s instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
Febuxostat side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning in your eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash that spreads and causes blistering and peeling).
Seek medical treatment if you have a serious drug reaction that can affect many parts of your body. Symptoms may include: skin rash, fever, swollen glands, flu-like symptoms, muscle aches, severe weakness, unusual bruising, or yellowing of your skin or eyes.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
- a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;
- heart attack symptoms–chest pain or pressure, pain spreading to your jaw or shoulder, fast heartbeats, shortness of breath;
- liver problems–stomach pain (upper right side), unusual tiredness, dark urine, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
- signs of a stroke–sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), sudden severe headache, slurred speech, problems with vision or balance.
Common side effects may include:
- gout flares, joint pain;
- mild rash; or
- liver problems.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur.
What other drugs will affect febuxostat?
Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:
This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect febuxostat, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.