You may have started to notice that your fingers or wrists ache after spending time on a keyboard, you feel stiffness when you get up in the morning, and maybe you find that daily chores are taking longer to complete. This could be the first symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), an autoimmune disease that can cause cartilage, bone, and joint damage with pain and swelling. The average age for the onset of RA is between 30 and 60 years old, although children can get arthritis as well.
Salazopyrin or generic Sulfasalazine may also be prescribed to treat colitis, another autoimmune disease that involves long lasting inflammation that affects the innermost lining of the colon and rectum. The sooner you see your doctor and are diagnosed, the sooner you can start taking Salazopyrin or generic Sulfasalazine and benefit from the reduction of your symptoms so you are able to enjoy your daily routine instead of dreading it. The generic alternative is not manufactured by the company that makes the brand product.
Your doctor or rheumatologist will want to act as soon as a diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis or ankylosing spondylitis associated with arthritis has been confirmed in order to prevent further damage. Salazopyrin, also called Azulfidine, is a disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD). Rather than just treating the symptoms, DMARDs act by altering or modifying the disease and inhibit the production of inflammatory chemicals that are mistakenly sent because your immune system believes your own tissues are a threat. Once the inflammation is reduced, the swelling and pain will recede and you can continue on with your day.
Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) mainly affects your spine and the two sacroiliac joints found on either side of the spine in your pelvic area. The inflammation affecting the vertebra eventually causes the production of extra bone that will eventually fuse together and impair your spine’s flexibility. Early symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis can begin in late adolescence or early adulthood and include frequent pain and stiffness in your lower back and buttocks.
You and your doctor should discuss the risks and benefits of taking Salazopyrin if you are pregnant, may become pregnant, or are breast feeding. To determine if Salazopyrin is safe for you to take, advise your doctor of other medical conditions or allergies you have, especially to sulfa drugs. Provide a list of any Rx drugs or non-prescription medications you currently take or use, including herbal remedies and dietary or vitamin supplements.
You may bruise or bleed easier while taking Salazopyrin; use caution if you take part in any sports or activities that could cause an injury. You may be more susceptible to infections while your immune system is suppressed. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any of your medications without consulting with your doctor first. Store all medications out of children’s reach and do not share any meds with others.