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Actigall (Generic Ursodiol)

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Why is this medication prescribed?

For those who do not want or are unable to have surgery to remove gallstones, ursodiol is used to dissolve the stones. Additionally, ursodiol is utilised to stop gallstones from forming in overweight individuals who are losing weight quickly. The drug ursodiol is used to treat primary cirrhosis of the biliary system (PBC; an autoimmune liver disease). The drug ursodiol belongs to a group of drugs known as gallstone dissolving agents. It functions by reducing the creation of cholesterol, breaking down bile cholesterol to avoid the formation of stones, and lowering toxic bile acid levels that build up in primary biliary cirrhosis.

How should this medicine be used?

Both oral tablets and capsules are available for ursodiol. Gallstones are often treated by taking it twice or three times daily with or without food, and those who are losing weight quickly should take it twice daily to prevent gallstones. The tablets are typically taken two to four times day with food if they are being used to treat primary biliary cirrhosis. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any instructions on your prescription label that you are unsure about following. Follow the ursodiol directions exactly. Never take it in larger or less amounts or more frequently than directed by your doctor.

If the tablet needs to be broken for your particular dose, set it on a flat surface with the scored portion facing up. The tablet will split into two halves if you hold it with your thumbs close to the scored area and gently press down. The other tablet half should be kept in the blister package that has been opened. Take the half tablet as prescribed by your doctor with food. Use the half-tablet that was stored within 7 days. Your doctor or pharmacist will explain how to break the tablets and how to take them if you have any questions.

For this medication to work, several months of use are required. Ursodiol may be required for up to two years if you are taking capsules to dissolve gallstones. Even if your gallstones do dissolve, you can get them again within five years of finishing ursodiol treatment. Your gallstones might not totally disappear. Ursodiol should be taken even if you feel fine. Without consulting your doctor, do not stop taking ursodiol.

Other uses for this medicine

Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details if you believe this drug should be used for something else.

What special precautions should I follow?

Before taking ursodiol,

  • If you have an allergy to ursodiol, bile acids, any other drugs, or any of the substances in ursodiol tablets and capsules, let your doctor and pharmacist know right away. Request a list of the components from your pharmacist.
  • Inform your doctor and pharmacist about any additional prescription and over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, dietary supplements, and herbal products you are now taking or intend to use. Incorporate any of the following: aluminum-containing antacids (Amphojel, Gaviscon, Maalox, Mylanta, among others), lipid-lowering drugs like cholestyramine (Prevalite) and colestipol (Colestid), and estrogen-containing drugs (including birth control pills).
  • If you have a blocked bile duct, let your doctor know. Most likely, your doctor will advise against taking ursodiol. Additionally, if you have a gallstone that won’t dissolve or if surgery would be a better course of action for your illness, your doctor may probably advise against taking ursodiol.
  • Inform your doctor if you have liver illness or if you’ve ever experienced variceal haemorrhage (esophageal or stomach bleeding).
  • If you are breastfeeding a child or intend to become pregnant, let your doctor know. Call your doctor if you become pregnant while taking ursodiol.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If you miss a dosage, take it as soon as you recall. If the next dose is soon due, skip the missed one and carry on with your regular dosing plan. To make up for a missing dose, do not take a second one.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Ursodiol might have negative effects. If any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away, let your doctor know right once:

  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Indigestion
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Infection-related symptoms including a cough, fever, sore throat, runny nose, or others
  • Back ache
  • Muscle ache
  • Joint edoema, discomfort, or stiffness
  • Hair fall

Some adverse effects can be very harmful. Call your doctor right away if you encounter any of these symptoms, or seek emergency care:

  • Regular urination or urination pain

Other negative effects of ursodiol are possible. If you experience any strange issues while taking this medicine, contact your doctor right away.

You or your doctor can submit a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting programme online or by phone if you have a serious side event (1-800-332-1088).

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?

Keep this medication out of the reach of children and tightly closed in the original container. Keep it at normal temperature, away from sources of extreme heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).

All medications should be kept out of the sight and reach of children, as many of the containers (such as weekly pill containers and those for eye drops, lotions, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and are simple for small children to open. Always lock safety caps and put the medication in a secure spot right away, up high and out of young children’s sight and reach, to prevent poisoning.

Unused prescriptions must be disposed of carefully to prevent pets, kids, and other people from ingesting them. You should not, however, dispose of this medication in the toilet. Instead, utilising a medicine take-back programme is the easiest approach to get rid of your medication. To find out about take-back programmes in your area, speak with your pharmacist or the garbage/recycling department in your city. If you do not have access to a take-back programme, see the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medicines website at for additional information.

In case of emergency/overdose

Call the poison control hotline at 1-800-222-1222 in the event of an overdose. Additionally, information can be found online at Call 911 right once if the person has collapsed, experienced a seizure, is having difficulty breathing, or cannot be roused.

Overdose signs could include the following:

  • Diarrhea

What other information should I know?

Keep all of your appointments with your physician and the lab. Every few months while you take ursodiol, your doctor will request blood tests to assess your liver function. To determine how your gallstones are responding to ursodiol, you will also need to have an ultrasound (a type of imaging that looks at organs and bodily structures inside the body).

No one else should take your medication. Any queries you may have regarding medication refills should be directed to your pharmacist.

You should keep a written record of every medication you take, including any over-the-counter (OTC) items, prescription drugs, and dietary supplements like vitamins and minerals. This list should be brought with you whenever you see a doctor or are admitted to the hospital. You should always have this information with you in case of emergencies.

Brand names

  • Actigall®
  • Urso® 250
  • Urso® Forte
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