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Generic Name: pancrelipase (oral) (pan kree LYE pace)
Brand Names: Cotazym, Cotazym-S, Creon 10, Creon 20, Creon 5, Ilozyme, Ku-Zyme, Pancrease, Pancrease MT 10, Pancrease MT 16, Pancrease MT 20, Pancrease MT 4, Pancron D/R, Ultrase, Ultrase MT 12, Ultrase MT 18, Ultrase MT 20, Viokase, Zymase

What is pancrelipase?

Pancrelipase is a combination of three enzymes (proteins): lipase, protease, and amylase. These enzymes are produced naturally in the pancreas and are important in the digestion of fats, proteins, and sugars.

Pancrelipase is used to replace these enzymes when the body does not have enough of its own. Pancrelipase reduces the pain associated with disorders of the pancreas. Conditions for which pancrelipase may be used include cystic fibrosis, chronic inflammation of the pancreas, and blockage of the pancreatic ducts. In addition, pancrelipase may be used following removal of the pancreas.

Pancrelipase may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about pancrelipase?

Take pancrelipase exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these instructions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you. Taking pancrelipase properly is the most important factor in getting the maximum benefit of this medication.

Do not inhale the powder inside the capsules or allow it to touch your skin. It may cause irritation, especially to your nose and lungs.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking pancrelipase?

Do not take pancrelipase without first talking to your doctor if you
  • are allergic to pork products;

  • have acute pancreatitis; or

  • have an acute worsening of a chronic pancreatic disease.

You may not be able to take pancrelipase or you may require a lower dose or special monitoring during treatment if you have any of the conditions listed above.

The Pancrease and Pancrease MT brands of pancrelipase are in the FDA pregnancy category B. This means that they are not expected to harm an unborn baby. Other brands of pancrelipase are in the FDA pregnancy category C or are not assigned an FDA pregnancy category. This means that it is not known whether they will harm an unborn baby. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant. It is also not known whether pancrelipase will harm a nursing infant. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding.

How should I take pancrelipase?

Take pancrelipase exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these instructions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Taking pancrelipase properly is the most important factor in getting the maximum benefit of this medication.

Pancrelipase is taken before or during each meal or snack. Follow your doctor's specific instructions.

Do not hold the tablets or capsule contents in your mouth. This may cause irritation of the inside of your mouth.

Do not crush or chew the capsules or tablets. Swallow them whole. If swallowing is difficult, some formulations can be opened and sprinkled onto a soft food such as applesauce or pudding. The soft food should then be swallowed immediately without chewing and followed with a beverage to ensure swallowing. Ask your doctor about such formulations if you are having difficulty swallowing your pills. Do not inhale the powder inside the capsules or allow it to touch your skin. It may cause irritation, especially to your nose and lungs.

Do not change brands of pancrelipase without first talking to your doctor or pharmacist. Some brands of pancrelipase are interchangeable while others are not. Your doctor and/or pharmacist know which brand/generic formulations may be substituted for another.

Store pancrelipase at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Skip the missed dose and take only your next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose of this medication unless otherwise directed by your doctor.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention.

Symptoms of a pancrelipase overdose are not known but may include diarrhea and stomach upset.

What should I avoid while taking pancrelipase?

Follow any special diet recommendations made by your doctor while taking pancrelipase.

Pancrelipase side effects

Stop taking pancrelipase and seek emergency medical attention if you experience an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives).

Other, less serious side effects may also occur. Continue to take pancrelipase and notify your doctor if you experience

  • nausea or vomiting;

  • abdominal discomfort, pain, or cramping;

  • diarrhea or constipation;

  • greasy stools;

  • perianal irritation;

  • flatulence; or

  • irritation to the skin or lungs after coming in contact with capsule contents.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect pancrelipase?

Pancrelipase is not known to interact with any other medications. However, talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist has more information about pancrelipase written for health professionals that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Pancrelipase is available with a prescription generically and under several brand names. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about this medication, especially if it is new to you.

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 3.02. Revision Date: 9/17/04 9:31:39 AM.

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