The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
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Drugs for Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Aminosalicylates are effective for induction and maintenance of remission in mild to moderate ulcerative colitis. They are not recommended for treatment of Crohn's disease. FORMULATIONS — Oral mesalamine is rapidly absorbed in the small intestine and most of the drug does not reach the colon. Pentasa releases mesalamine gradually throughout the gastrointestinal tract. Delzicol, Asacol HD, Lialda, and Apriso delay the release of the drug until it reaches the distal ileum and colon. Sulfasalazine (Azulfidine, and generics), balsalazide (Colazal, and others), and olsalazine (Dipentum) are prodrugs; mesalamine is azo-bonded to a second moiety and released in the colon following bacterial cleavage of the bond. Mesalamine is also available as an enema (Rowasa, and generics) and as a rectal ... more      
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