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15 Feb 2012 01:26 AM

Montelukast, the Drug for Asthma


Montelukast is an oral drug used for the prevention of asthma attacks, allergic rhinitis and seasonal allergies that are both indoor as well as outdoor. The drug is also used for the treatment of bronchospasm and urticaria. The medicine is available under the brand names Singulair as well as Montelo-10. The medicine controls asthma, leading to fewer attacks. Asthma results in shortness of breath accompanied by cough as well as wheezing. Singulair helps in blocking of activity of leukotrienes, the chemicals released by the body on coming in contact with asthma trigger like tree pollen. These chemicals tighten the airways, resulting in asthma. Thus, Singulair helps in inhibiting the leukotrienes and preventing asthma and allergy symptoms.
Patients should take Singulair pill according to the prescription of the doctor. Take the pill one time daily in the evening. Take the medicine with food or without it. The medicine is available in four forms. For children who are twelve to twenty three months old, the doctor prescribes oral granules of 4 mg. for children who are two to five years old, 4 mg chewable tablet is prescribed. For children who are six to fourteen years old, 5 mg chewable tablet is appropriate. Adults as well as adolescents who are fifteen years old and above this age group should take the 10 mg tablet for swallowing. Store the medicine at room temperature. Keep it protected from heat as well as moisture.
Montelukast has some side effects like behavior changes, agitation, aggressiveness, and hostility. There may be bad dreams, depression, tremor, confusion, irritation, sleepwalking, sleeping problems, anxiety, hallucinations, restlessness, and suicidal tendencies. If you experience any of these serious symptoms, you must consult a doctor immediately. Some common side effects of the medicine are gastrointestinal disturbance, respiratory infection, headache, hypersensitivity reactions, cough, diarrhea, flu, and running nose. There can be increased bleeding, dizziness, drowsiness, hepatitis, tiredness, swelling, heartburn, indigestion, stomach upset, vomiting, and pain in the joints and muscles. There may be fever, earache, sore throat, sinus infection, and stomach pain. You must consult a doctor if you have rashes, sinusitis, and feel pin sensation and numbness in the limbs.
The patient should not use Singulair immediately after an attack of asthma. Instead, use the inhaler for rescue and consult a doctor. If you are sensitive to the ingredients of the medicine, do not use it. Children should not use the medicine without consulting a doctor. Take medicines for asthma as prescribed by the doctor. If you are taking aspirin and it leads to worsening of asthma symptoms, avoid using aspirin and consult a doctor. Inform the doctor about all the medicines that you are using, esp. if using Phenobarbital and rifampin. If you do not get good results from the use of the medicine and if the symptoms worsen, consult a doctor immediately. If you are suffering from phenylketonuria, consult a doctor before using the medicine as it contains phenylalanine. Women who are pregnant and breast-feeding should also use the medicine after consulting the doctor.
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