Pyridostigmine - oral
Pyridostigmine - oral
Pyridostigmine is used to improve muscle strength in patients with a certain muscle disease (myasthenia gravis). It works by preventing the breakdown of a certain natural substance (acetylcholine) in your body. Acetylcholine is needed for normal muscle function.
Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor. If you are using the liquid form of this medication, carefully measure the dose using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose.
If you are using the extended-release tablets, take as directed by your doctor, usually 1 to 2 times daily (at least 6 hours apart). Do not crush or chew extended-release tablets. Doing so can release all of the drug at once, increasing the risk of side effects. Also, do not split the tablets unless they have a score line and your doctor or pharmacist tells you to do so. Swallow the whole or split tablet without crushing or chewing.
The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time(s) each day.
Do not increase your dose or use this drug more often or for longer than prescribed. Your condition will not improve any faster, and your risk of side effects will increase.
The tablet forms of this medication may become discolored due to moisture. This does not affect how well the medication works.
Tell your doctor if your condition does not get better or if it gets worse.
Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, increased saliva/sweating, runny nose, decreased pupil size, or increased urination may occur. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including:
In the US -
Before taking pyridostigmine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to bromides; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:
Liquid products may contain sugar and/or alcohol. Caution is advised if you have diabetes, liver disease, or any other condition that requires you to limit/avoid these substances in your diet. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about using this product safely.
This medication passes into breast milk but is unlikely to harm a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: mental/mood changes (such as agitation, restlessness, confusion, hallucinations), fast/slow heartbeat, muscle cramps/weakness, inability to move, trouble breathing.
Do not share this medication with others.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Information last revised July 2016.
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