Allopurinol is an oral prescription drug and xanthine oxidase inhibitor used to help people with kidney stones, gout, and higher levels of uric acid in the blood. Cancer patients and people with joint inflammation/pain may also take Allopurinol .

This medication works by averting gout attacks and lowering the body’s production of uric acid. With lower levels of uric acid, people are less prone to kidney stones and gout attacks. Allopurinol lowers the xanthine oxidase enzyme which, in excess, can lead to urate.

Precautions and Warnings with Allopurinol

Before taking Allopurinol , you should inform your doctor of any allergies you may have to animals, medicines, foods, preservatives, or dyes. Allopurinol has not been confirmed as safe for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Let your doctor know if you’re pregnant, planning to get pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to start breastfeeding.

This medication can reduce blood cells that your body depends upon to fight off infections. Allopurinol can lead to drowsiness and you should not operate a vehicle or other machines while taking this drug.

You should stop using Allopurinol if you suffer an allergic reaction to the medication. You should inform your doctor before you start allopurinol if your medical history includes any of the following:

  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease

Allopurinol Side Effects

Allopurinol impacts your enzymes and blood and may lead to a range of different side effects.

Mild Side Effects

If you begin to experience mild side effects after starting Allopurinol , they may disappear with time as your body adjusts. If the following side effects persist, be sure to inform your doctor:

  • Muscle/joint pain
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Liver abnormalities
  • Body discomfort
  • Gout flares
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash
  • Dizziness

Severe Side Effects

If you begin to experience severe side effects after you start Allopurinol , tell your doctor right away. If you think you’re having a medical emergency, call 911 right away. Severe side effects from Allopurinol are not usual.

Severe side effects from Allopurinol can include the following:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Fever
  • Skin blisters
  • Darkening of urine
  • Adverse skin reactions
  • Kidney complications
  • Facial/oral swelling
  • Sudden heartbeat changes
  • Numbness or weakness on one side of the body

Drug Interactions with Allopurinol

Before you get on Allopurinol , you should let your doctor know about any vitamins, herbs, supplements, or medications that you’re on or planning to start.

Allopurinol may interact with other prescription drugs. You tell your doctor if you’re taking the following prescription drugs as they may interact with Allopurinol :

Strengths and Dosages of Allopurinol

Allopurinol is available in doses of 100 mg to 300 mg. Specific prescription doses from doctors may vary according to the needs of each individual.

This medication should be taken by mouth with a full glass of water. To further reduce the likelihood of kidney stones, you should drink at least eight to ten cups of water per day while taking Allopurinol .

Allopurinol should not be taken at higher levels than prescribed. This can lead to extreme side effects. You should not chew, split, break, or brush Allopurinol as this may hurt its effectiveness.

If you miss a dose of Allopurinol , take it as soon as you remember. You should continue taking Allopurinol even if you have gout episodes in the initial few weeks. If you believe you’re facing life-threatening health problems, call 911 right away.

Allopurinol alternatives

The following alternatives to Allopurinol are available:

FAQs of Allopurinol

What is Allopurinol?

Allopurinol is a xanthine oxidase inhibitor and prescription medicine used to treat people with kidney stones, gout, and heightened levels of uric acid in their blood.

What to avoid when taking Allopurinol?

You should avoid medications used to stop blood clots or reduce the immune system when taking Allopurinol . You should also avoid aspirin, antibiotics, and medication that increases urination.

How long does it take for Allopurinol to lower uric acid levels?

Allopurinol may require one to three weeks before lowering your uric acid levels.

What is the most serious side effect of Allopurinol?

The most serious side effect of Allopurinol is a skin rash, as this can be immediately life-threatening.

How long does it take for Allopurinol to work?

Allopurinol has been known to show results within one to three weeks. You may notice results before or after this time.

What are the long-term side effects of Allopurinol?

The long-term side effects of Allopurinol include hair loss, skin color changes, blindness, anxiety, and changes in taste.

How long does Allopurinol stay in your system after working?

After working, Allopurinol can stay in your system for between one to 4.5 hours.

When to start Allopurinol after a gout flare?

Your doctor will be able to let you know how soon after a gout attack you can safely start Allopurinol .

Is Allopurinol used for cancer patients?

Cancer patients can take Allopurinol if their doctor approves it.

What antibiotics can you take with Allopurinol?

You should not take antibiotics while you’re on Allopurinol .

IMPORTANT NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. It should not be taken as an endorsement of any specific medication or treatment. Individual health conditions and responses to treatment can vary greatly; therefore, this information should not be seen as a guarantee of safety, suitability, or effectiveness for any particular individual. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized medical advice and before making any decisions regarding your health or treatment plans.

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