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Generic Name: ascorbic acid (vitamin C) (ah SCORE bik AH sid)
Brand Names: Ascot, C/Rose Hips, Cecon, Cemill 1000, Cemill 500, Centrum Singles-Vitamin C, Cevi-Bid, N Ice with Vitamin C, Sunkist Vitamin C, Vicks Vitamin C Drops

What is ascorbic acid?

Ascorbic acid is found in citrus fruit, tomatoes, potatoes, and leafy vegetables. Ascorbic acid is important for the skin and connective tissues, for normal chemical and hormonal production, and for the immune system.

Ascorbic acid is used to treat and prevent vitamin C deficiency.

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

What is the most important information I should know about ascorbic acid?

Do not take more ascorbic acid than is prescribed for you or than is directed on the package.

Who should not take ascorbic acid?

Before taking ascorbic acid, tell your doctor or talk to your pharmacist if you:

  • have diabetes,

  • have kidney disease or an increased risk of kidney stone formation,

  • have a tartrazine sensitivity,

  • have a sulfite sensitivity,

  • are on a sodium restricted diet,

  • are undergoing testing of the stool for blood, or

  • are taking warfarin (Coumadin).

You may not be able to take ascorbic acid, or you may require special monitoring if you have any of the conditions or are taking any of the medicines listed above.

Ascorbic acid is in the FDA pregnancy category C. This means that it is not known whether ascorbic acid will harm an unborn baby. Some ascorbic acid is important for the normal development of a baby, however it is not known whether large doses or prolonged use of ascorbic acid could be harmful. Do not take ascorbic acid without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant. Ascorbic acid passes into breast milk. Do not take ascorbic acid without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding.

How should I take ascorbic acid?

Take ascorbic acid exactly as directed by your doctor or as directed on the package. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Swallow each nonchewable dose (tablets and capsules) with a full glass of water.

Chew the chewable forms of ascorbic acid well before swallowing.

Use a dropper, a dose-measuring spoon, or a dose-measuring cup to measure liquid doses of ascorbic acid. Shake suspensions well before measuring a dose.

Measure and mix the powder and crystal forms of ascorbic acid as directed. Drink all of the mixture immediately after mixing.

Allow the lozenges to dissolve completely in your mouth.

Do not take more ascorbic acid than is prescribed for you or than is directed on the package. Store ascorbic acid at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take only the next regularly scheduled dose. It is not necessary to take a double dose.

What happens if I overdose?

An overdose of ascorbic acid is not likely to be dangerous. If you suspect and overdose, call a doctor or a poison control center for advice.

What should I avoid while taking ascorbic acid?

There are no restrictions on food, beverages, or activities while you are taking ascorbic acid unless otherwise directed by your doctor.

Ascorbic acid side effects

Stop taking ascorbic acid 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, especially with large or prolonged doses. Talk to your doctor if you experience

  • diarrhea, or

  • kidney stones.

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 ascorbic acid?

Talk to your doctor before taking ascorbic acid if you are taking any of the following medicines

  • an estrogen such as Premarin, Ogen, Estratest, Vivelle, Climara, Estring, Estrace, and others;

  • an oral birth control pill such as Alesse, Levlen, Ovral, Triphasil, Tri-Levlen, Lo-Ovral, and others; or

  • warfarin (Coumadin).

You may not be able to take ascorbic acid, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you are taking any of the medicines listed above.

It is not known whether other drugs will interact with ascorbic acid. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines or herbal/health supplements.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider may have more information about ascorbic acid.

  • Consultation with a licensed health care professional is advisable before using any herbal/health supplement. Additionally, consultation with a practitioner trained in the uses of herbal/health supplements may be beneficial and coordination of treatment among all health care providers involved may be advantageous. Remember, keep this and all other prescription drug products, over-the-counter drug products, and herbal/health supplements out of the reach of children.
  • 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: 1.04. Revision Date: 2/13/04 4:00:25 PM.

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