5-aminosalicylic acid (5-ASA)

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4 Sep 2016 - General

5-aminosalicy acid (5-ASA) is a common medical treatment for mild-to-moderate ulcerative coitis. The first 5-ASA product is sulfasalazine. Sulfasalazine is linked to sulfapyridine by a diazo bond that is cleaved by colonic bacteria, and the active ingredient is 5-ASA. There are a few side effects from sulfasalazine like infertility due to changes in sperm count and morphology, agranulocytosis, autoimmune hemolytic anaemia, folic acid deficiency, nausea, vomiting, fever and rash. The newer preparation only contain 5-ASA, that are carried through and released in the small bowel. 5-ASA is avaliable in a oral formulation forms for oral intake, and it is also available in enema form to be used per rectum (which can act locally on the colonic mucosa). 

Yes, for the patient with mild-moderate ulcerative colitis, 5-ASA(or mesalazine) will be the drug of choice to maintain clinical remission. (This means can control/supress the disease activity). They need to take this medication for long term to control disease activity. 5-ASA is always the first line of treatment for ulcerative colitis. If the symptoms or disease activity was not well controlled by 5-ASA (like frequent flare requiring steroid), then we can escalate the treatment to azathioprine...
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5-aminosalicylic acid is an oftenly used drug to control the ongoing inflammation inside the bowel. Mainly for the two types of inflammatory bowel disease types which are crohns disease and ulcerative colitis. And can be used for any kind of inflammation inside the bowel. It has been widely used for the patients with crohns disease to maintain remission of the disease. The drug usually crosses the placents and excreted in breast milk. It has been adviced that to not to use this drug for children...
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Thank you for this informative post You Yi Hong. I'm sure the doctors in our community would find this information beneficial in managing their patients with ulcerative colitis. I would just like to ask, as you mentioned 5-ASA in your other post, is 5-ASA a drug of choice for ulcerative colitis? Is this manage by one drug alone or is it being managed by other medications as well and treating other symptoms th...
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