Aminosalicylic acid

    • What type of medicine is this?

    • This medicine is an anti-TB medicine, used in combination with other potent medicines to treat TB. It is only used when the bacteria show resistance to the first-line therapy.

      It is taken by mouth and will usually be provided free for patients registered under the Ministry of Health's TB programme.

      It is a prescription-only medicine.

    • What is the medicine used for?

    • Aminosalicylic acid is an antituberculosis medication used in combination with other medicines to treat tuberculosis (TB). It is used to prevent the mycobacteria from developing resistance to streptomycin and isoniazid, other more potent anti-TB medicines. The combined drug treatment requires taking up to four medications for a period of six months.

      This medicine is available as granules to be mixed in juice or yoghurt. It may cause side-effects like stomach disturbances, vomiting and diarrhoea. If you are allergic to it or have a rash when you start it, report to your healthcare provider immediately.

    • How to take this medicine?

      • Aminosalicylic acid is available as 4 gram granules in a sachet. It is only meant to be taken by mouth.
      • Take the medicine every eight hours or as advised by your healthcare provider.
      • Take this medicine with orange juice, apple juice, cranberry juice or yoghurt. Pour the amount prescribed into your juice, stir and drink all at once. You can also mix it in yoghurts and eat it.
      • If you miss a dose, use it when you remember. Do not use two doses at the same time.
      • If you used more than the amount prescribed by your healthcare provider, seek medical attention immediately.
    • What are the side-effects?

    • Aminosalicylic acid mostly upsets your stomach. You may:

      • Feel like vomiting or vomit.
      • Have loose stools.
      • Experience stomach pain.
      • In more serious cases, you may have bloody stools. Your vomit will also appear red with spots of blood.
      • If you have an allergy, a skin rash may occur. If accompanied by fever and worsened stomach pain, you must inform your healthcare provider immediately.
    • What to know before taking this medicine?

      • Inform your healthcare provider if you are allergic to this medicine or other aminosalicylate medicines.
      • Inform your healthcare provider if you are pregnant or breastfeeding before using this medicine.
      • If you use aminosalicylic acid for more than one month, you should take nutritional supplements, especially vitamin B12.
      • Inform your healthcare provider if you are currently using any other medicines, including herbal pills so that it will not affect your treatment.
      • To prevent the bacteria from becoming resistant, use this medicine for the stated period prescribed by your healthcare provider.