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Ulcerative Colitis Treatment with Pentasa: Benefits and Action
It is nowadays widely stated that ulcerative colitis (UC) may have broad impact on everyday life of a sufferer, negatively influencing his or her ability to effectively work, fulfil other social activities, and have healthy sexual relations. A patient may develop insomnia, nervous tension, and depression. Even lessening of the symptoms, if not curing the disease, may, on the other hand, significantly improve the life of a sufferer.
One of the options to effectively reduce the symptoms of UC is Pentasa therapy – a modern medication with the unique mode of action, which allows keeping the most disruptive disease signs under rigid control. It may prolong the remissions of the disease and it is powerful enough to reduce the symptoms of even moderately severe UC.
Pentasa active ingredient – mesalamine – is a derivative of salicylic acid (aspirin); thus, it has anti-inflammatory effect on the bowel. It is stated that the agent works topically and locally in the small and large intestines to treat the disease, being, at the same time, poorly absorbed into the blood stream, which adds to the safety of medication.
Pentasa capsules are promoted as the unique method of UC treatment due to the form of the medication. It is designed as a delayed-release drug: the coating of the capsule is made of the gelatine-like substance, which is dissolved in the stomach releasing tiny semiporous spheres, which contain active ingredient of the medication.
Entering the intestines, mesalanine is flushed out of the spheres by the water found in the large and small intestines. Such form of the drug ensures its work in the spot of the problem, not in the stomach. Other UC medications are designed to use intestinal bacteria to deliver active ingredient to the small and large intestines.
Scientists note that they cannot exactly explain how mesalanine works to reduce inflammation; perhaps it blocks the production of pain-causing chemicals in the colon and rectum. Nonetheless, it is capable of relieving such symptoms as bleeding from the rectum, stomach cramps, diarrhoea, and the number of trips to the toilet each day.
Although Pentasa is a relatively safe medication, it may cause such side effects as mild nausea and vomiting, stomach cramps and gas, diarrhoea or constipation, flu-like symptoms and skin rash, headache and dizziness. In people sensitive to the active ingredient, Pentasa may cause worsening of the condition. The latter situation deserves evaluation of the possibility to switch to another drug.
In general, people allergic to aspirin and its derivatives, as well as those suffering from kidney and liver disorders may be not recommended to use this drug. Similarly, breastfeeding mothers should not take Pentasa. Pregnant women, however, may safely undergo the treatment, since this medication is not likely to harm an unborn baby.
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In addition to the beneficial form of the drug, Pentasa has one more advantage: fewer capsules are needed to control disease symptoms. Patients are usually prescribed two 500 mg capsules four times a day. Those are recommended to be taken with food.
Although it is noted that no drug interactions were noticed during Pentasa clinical trials, it is better to inform your doctor about any prescription or OTC medications you are currently taking. Special attention deserve antiviral, antibacterial, anticancer medicines, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.  

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