What is this medication for?
Zafirlukast belongs to a group of medications known as leukotriene receptor antagonists. It works by blocking chemicals produced by the body called leukotrienes. Leukotrienes cause the lining of the breathing passages of the lung to swell. When used regularly, zafirlukast helps to reduce the inflammation in the lining of the airways to make breathing easier.
Zafirlukast is used for the prevention and chronic treatment of asthma in adults and children 5 years of age and older. It works over a long period of time to prevent asthma attacks but will not help to relieve an asthma attack when it is occurring. People with asthma should always have their fast-acting asthma relief medication on hand to deal with attacks.
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Accolate® is available as:
Some medications may have other generic brands available. Always ask your doctor or pharmacist about the safety of switching between brands of the same medication.
How should I use this medication?
The recommended dose for adults and children aged 12 years and over is 20 mg twice daily. The recommended dose for children aged 5 to 11 years is 10 mg twice daily. This medication should be taken on an empty stomach (at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals).
Zafirlukast is usually added to the other medications you are taking for asthma. Do not stop taking any asthma medications without speaking with your doctor. If you feel your asthma symptoms do not improve or worsen while taking this medication, contact your doctor.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.
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Who should NOT take this medication?
Do not take this medication if you:
- are allergic to zafirlukast or any ingredients of the medication
- are using it to treat acute asthma attacks
- have liver impairment including liver (or hepatic) cirrhosis