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Budesonide (Oral Route)


Description and Brand Names of Budesonide (Oral Route)

US Brand Name

  1. Entocort EC
  2. Uceris

Canadian Brand Name

  1. Pulmicort
  2. Pulmicort Spacer


Budesonide is used to treat an inflammatory bowel disease called Crohn’s disease. This medicine works inside the intestine (bowel) to reduce inflammation and symptoms of the disease. It also helps keep the symptoms of Crohn’s disease from coming back. Budesonide is a steroid (cortisone-like) medicine.

Budesonide extended-release tablets are used to help get active mild to moderate ulcerative colitis under control (induce remission).

This medicine is available only with your doctor’s prescription.

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Capsule, Delayed Release
  • Tablet, Extended Release
  • Capsule, Extended Release

Before Using Budesonide (Oral Route)

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:


Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.


Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of budesonide in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established. Because budesonide may cause slowed growth in children, those who will be taking it for a long time should have their weight and growth measured by the doctor regularly.


Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of budesonide in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney, or heart problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving budesonide.



There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Boceprevir
  • Bupropion
  • Cobicistat
  • Dabrafenib
  • Eslicarbazepine Acetate
  • Piperaquine
  • Pixantrone
  • Primidone
  • Ritonavir
  • Telaprevir

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Erythromycin
  • Itraconazole
  • Ketoconazole

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following may cause an increased risk of certain side effects but may be unavoidable in some cases. If used together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use this medicine, or give you special instructions about the use of food, alcohol, or tobacco.

  • Grapefruit Juice

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Cataracts (eye disease), or a family history of or
  • Diabetes, or a family history of or
  • Eczema (skin disease) or
  • Glaucoma, or a family history of or
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure) or
  • Infection (e.g., bacteria, virus, fungus) or
  • Osteoporosis (thin bones) or
  • Rhinitis (inflammation inside your nose) or
  • Stomach ulcer, active or history of or
  • Tuberculosis, active or history of or
  • Weakened immune system – Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Liver disease (including cirrhosis), moderate to severe – Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.

Proper Use of Budesonide (Oral Route)

Take this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. Also, do not stop taking this medicine without first checking with your doctor.

This medicine comes with a patient information insert. Read and follow the instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Swallow the capsule and extended-release tablet whole. Do not break, crush, chew, or open it.

Keep using this medicine for the full time of treatment, even if you begin to feel better after a few days. Do not miss any doses.


The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor’s orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (capsules):

    • For mild to moderate Crohn’s disease:

      • Adults – 9 milligrams (mg) once a day in the morning for up to 8 weeks. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed.
      • Children – Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For prevention of symptoms of Crohn’s disease from coming back:

      • Adults – 6 milligrams (mg) once a day in the morning for up to 3 months. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed.
      • Children – Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
  • For oral dosage form (extended-release tablets):

    • For mild to moderate ulcerative colitis:

      • Adults – 9 milligrams (mg) once a day in the morning for up to 8 weeks.
      • Children – Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.


Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.


It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits for any problems or unwanted effects that may be caused by this medicine.

If your condition does not improve or if it become worse, check with your doctor.

This medicine may cause a serious type of allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis requires immediate medical attention. The most serious signs of this reaction are very fast or irregular breathing, gasping for breath, wheezing, or fainting. Other signs may include changes in color of the skin of the face, very fast but irregular heartbeat or pulse, hive-like swellings on the skin, and puffiness or swellings of the eyelids or around the eyes. If these side effects occur, get emergency help at once.

Using too much of this medicine or using it for a long time may increase your risk of having adrenal gland problems. Talk to your doctor if you have more than one of these symptoms while you are using this medicine: darkening of the skin, diarrhea, dizziness, fainting, loss of appetite, mental depression, nausea, skin rash, unusual tiredness or weakness; or vomiting.

If you are taking another steroid medicine and will switch to Ucerisâ„¢, check first with your doctor. This may increase your chance of having steroid withdrawal side effects, such as headache, loss of appetite, blurred vision, change in the ability to see colors (especially blue or yellow), or vomiting.

You may get infections more easily while using this medicine. Avoid people who are sick or have infections. Tell your doctor right away if you have been exposed to someone with chickenpox or measles.

Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. You may need to stop using this medicine several days before having surgery or medical tests.

Grapefruits and grapefruit juice may increase the effects of budesonide by increasing the amount of this medicine in your body. You should not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you are taking this medicine.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Side Effects of Budesonide (Oral Route)

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  1. Bruising easily
  2. chills
  3. colds
  4. cough or hoarseness
  5. fever
  6. flu-like symptoms
  7. sneezing
  8. sore throat

Less common

  1. Abdominal or stomach pain
  2. bladder pain
  3. bleeding after defecation
  4. bloody or cloudy urine
  5. blurred vision
  6. burning while urinating
  7. burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, “pins and needles”, or tingling feelings
  8. chest pain
  9. convulsions
  10. cough producing mucus
  11. decreased urine
  12. diarrhea
  13. difficult or labored breathing
  14. difficult or painful urination
  15. dizziness
  16. dry mouth
  17. eye pain
  18. fast, irregular, pounding, or racing heartbeat or pulse
  19. feeling of warmth
  20. general feeling of discomfort or illness
  21. headache
  22. heartburn
  23. increase in body movements
  24. increased thirst
  25. increased urge to urinate during the night
  26. irregular heartbeat
  27. joint pain
  28. loss of appetite
  29. lower back or side pain
  30. mood changes
  31. muscle aches and pains
  32. nausea or vomiting
  33. nervousness
  34. numbness or tingling in the hands, feet, or lips
  35. pain or discomfort in the chest, upper stomach, or throat
  36. pounding in the ears
  37. rectal bleeding
  38. redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest
  39. runny nose
  40. severe constipation
  41. shakiness in the legs, arms, hands, or feet
  42. shivering
  43. slow or fast heartbeat
  44. stomach cramps
  45. sweating
  46. swelling of the legs and feet
  47. swelling or puffiness of the face
  48. tightness in the chest
  49. trouble sleeping
  50. uncomfortable swelling around the anus
  51. unusual tiredness or weakness
  52. upper abdominal or stomach pain
  53. waking to urinate at night
  54. weight gain
  55. weight loss

Incidence not known

  1. Bulging soft spot on the head of an infant
  2. change in the ability to see colors, especially blue or yellow
  3. difficulty with swallowing
  4. hives
  5. itching
  6. puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  7. skin rash

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  1. Acid or sour stomach
  2. belching
  3. blemishes on the skin
  4. heartburn
  5. indigestion
  6. pain or tenderness around the eyes and cheekbones
  7. pimples
  8. rounded or moon face
  9. stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
  10. stuffy nose

Less common

  1. Accumulation of pus
  2. agitation
  3. blistering, crusting, irritation, itching, or reddening of the skin
  4. bloated or full feeling
  5. change in hearing
  6. changes in vision
  7. cracked, dry, or scaly skin
  8. cracks in the skin at the corners of mouth
  9. difficulty having a bowel movement (stool)
  10. difficulty with moving
  11. dizziness or lightheadedness
  12. ear drainage
  13. earache or pain in the ear
  14. excess air or gas in the stomach or intestines
  15. feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  16. hair loss or thinning of the hair
  17. increased appetite
  18. increased hair growth, especially on the face
  19. lack or loss of strength
  20. loss of memory
  21. muscle pains or stiffness
  22. nervousness
  23. pain, swelling, or redness in the joints
  24. passing gas
  25. pinpoint red or purple spots on the skin
  26. pressure in the stomach
  27. problems with memory
  28. redness, swelling, or soreness of the tongue
  29. sensation of spinning
  30. skin rash
  31. skin rash, encrusted, scaly, and oozing
  32. sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  33. sleeplessness
  34. soreness or redness around the fingernails and toenails
  35. swelling of the abdominal or stomach area
  36. swollen joints
  37. unable to sleep
  38. uterine bleeding between menstrual periods

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.