GENERIC NAME: ENTACAPONE - ORAL (en-TACK-up-own)
BRAND NAME(S): Comtan
USES: This medication is used with other medications (levodopa/carbidopa) to treat Parkinson's disease. Entacapone belongs to a class of drugs known as COMT inhibitors. Many people taking levodopa for Parkinson's have problems with the effects of the levodopa wearing off between scheduled doses, causing symptoms to return or worsen. Entacapone blocks a certain natural substance (COMT enzyme) that breaks down the levodopa in the body. This effect allows the levodopa to last longer in the system so that it doesn't wear off before the next dose.
HOW TO USE: Take this medication by mouth with or without food, usually with each prescribed dose of levodopa/carbidopa (up to 8 times daily) or as directed by your doctor.Dosage is based on your medical condition, liver function, and response to therapy.Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same times each day. Do not suddenly stop taking this medication unless instructed to do so by your doctor. Doing so may cause your Parkinson's symptoms to become much worse.Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens (such as your Parkinson's symptoms are not controlled).
SIDE EFFECTS: Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, unwanted/uncontrolled movements, increased sweating, drowsiness, tiredness, dry mouth, gas, and abdominal pain may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.Lightheadedness or dizziness upon standing may also occur, especially during the first few weeks of treatment. To reduce the risk of dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication may develop serious side effects, but with frequent visits to your doctor, this risk can be minimized.Some people using this medication have reported falling asleep suddenly during their usual daily activities (such as talking on the phone, driving). In some cases, sleep occurred without any feelings of drowsiness beforehand. Therefore, you should not drive or take part in other possibly dangerous activities until you are certain that this medication will not cause drowsiness or sudden sleep. If you experience increased sleepiness or fall asleep during the day, do not drive or take part in other possibly dangerous activities until you have discussed this effect with your doctor. Your risk is increased with use of alcohol or other medications that can make you drowsy.Your urine may turn brownish-orange. This effect is harmless.Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: mental/mood changes (such as confusion, hallucinations), unusual urges (such as increased gambling, sexual urges), fever, muscle stiffness, persistent diarrhea.Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: easy bleeding/bruising, sore/painful muscles, muscle weakness, trouble breathing, pain with breathing.A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.In the US -Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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