What does montelukast do?
MONTELUKAST (Singulair(R)) helps to reduce asthma symptoms (coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, or chest tightness) and control your asthma. It does not provide instant relief and cannot be used to treat a sudden asthma attack. It works only when used on a regular basis to help reduce inflammation and prevent asthma attacks. Montelukast is effective in adults and children.
What should my health care professional know before I use montelukast?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
• an acute asthma attack
• are on corticosteroid therapy, like prednisone or inhalers
• liver disease, like hepatitis
• an unusual or allergic reaction to montelukast, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
• pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medicine?
Take montelukast by mouth. You may take your tablets with food. Follow the directions on the prescription label. You should take montelukast every day, even when you are not having asthma symptoms. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
Chewable tablets: If you are taking the chewable tablets, chew them well before swallowing with water. You may take your tablets with food. Follow the directions on the prescription label. You should take montelukast every day, even when you are not having asthma symptoms. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
Contact your pediatrician or health care professional regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed. Montelukast is normally prescribed in children 2 years of age or older.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the previous dose. Do not use double or extra doses.
What other medicines can interact with montelukast?
Tell your prescriber or health care professional about all other medicines you are taking, including non-prescription medicines. Also tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are a frequent user of drinks with caffeine or alcohol, if you smoke, or if you use illegal drugs. These may affect the way your medicine works. Check with your health care professional before stopping or starting any of your medicines.
What side effects may I notice from using montelukast?
Side effects that you should report to your prescriber or health care professional as soon as possible:
Rare or uncommon:
• a feeling of pins and needles or numbness of arms and legs
• increased bleeding tendency or bruising
• edema or swelling of the legs or ankles
• seizure or convulsion (very rare)
• skin rash and itching
• severe stomach pain (very rare potential for pancreatitis)
• swelling of the face, lips, tongue, and/or throat, which may cause difficulty in breathing or swallowing
• wheezing or continued coughing
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your prescriber or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
• difficulty sleeping
• horseness or sore throat
• indigestion or stomach ache
• muscle aches or cramps
• runny or stuffy nose
• unusual dreams