What exactly is allopurinol and why do people use it?
One of the medications that are officially approved for the treatment of various health issues provoked by increased levels of the uric acid is allopurinol. Some of these health issues are gout, increased uric acid levels, which are result of cancer treatment, and kidney stones in cases of those who have high levels of uric acid. When it comes to the way in which it works, the entire mechanism of action consists of simply inhibiting a particular enzyme that is responsible for production of this acid in the human organism, which further affects the rate at which the uric acid is produced.
Risks and side effects associated with allopurinol
First of all, it should be noted that this medication can be used in cases of children who have cancer and increased levels of uric acid. This does not mean that its use is safe for everyone or that it is side effect free, but it is definitely tolerated well by the majority of those who use it. As for the side effects, they can be prevented in some cases, or the possibility that they will occur can be minimized, but unfortunately, that is not possible always. For example, people who suffer from liver cirrhosis, liver failure, or some other disease of this organ, as well as people who suffer from certain kidney diseases or allergies of any kind, should inform their doctor in time, because this medication can cause additional problems in such cases. As for women who are either pregnant or breastfeeding, they should also warn their doctor about this detail, because the use of allopurinol is not considered safe during pregnancy, and due to its ability to pass through the breast milk, its use should be discussed in cases of breastfeeding mothers as well.
When it comes to the possible interaction, the list of medications that allopurinol should not be combined with is rater long, but ACE inhibitors, antacids, diuretics are a part of that list as well. In case problems such as painful urination, easy bruising, easy bleeding, or irritation of the eyes occur, it is necessary to consult a doctor. The same goes for signs that indicate some problems with liver (including even the loss of appetite and weight), frequent infections, skin rash or some other sign of allergic reaction, while other side effects are not so serious and they do not require medical attention unless they are persistent.