What is Probenecid?
Gout happens when there is too much uric acid in the blood. The uric acid makes crystals that form in the joints. People with frequent attacks of gout have chronic gout. Probenecid is used to treat chronic gout. The medicine works by removing the extra uric acid from the body. This medicine will help prevent gout attacks only as long as you continue to take it.
How do I take it?
Probenecid is taken twice a day. Most people start with 250 mg (one-half of a 500-mg tablet) two times a day for about one week, then 500 mg (one tablet) two times a day for a few weeks. Your uric acid levels will be tested frequently. When the uric acid is under control, the dose may be changed. Probenecid can be taken with or without food. You should drink plenty of water while taking probenecid. This will help flush the uric acid from your kidneys as the medication starts working.
What about side effects?
Before beginning Probenecid treatment, make sure you’ve told your healthcare professional about any medical problems you have. This is especially important if:
- You have liver or kidney problems
- You have a history of heart disease or stroke
- You’re pregnant or planning to become pregnant
- You’re breast-feeding or planning to breast-feed
Your healthcare professional may do blood tests to check your liver function while you are taking Probenecid.
The most common side effects of Probenecid are liver problems, nausea, gout flares, joint pain, and rash. Contact your prescriber if any of these side effects occur.
What about other medications?
When you are taking Probenecid, it is very important that your doctors know if you are taking any other medicine. This includes prescription and non-prescription medicines as well as birth control pills, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
What else should I know?
Gout may flare up when you start taking any medicine to lower your uric acid. This is caused when crystals begin to dissolve in your joints as your uric acid level goes down. Your healthcare professional may tell you to take other medicines to help prevent or manage flares during initial treatment. If your healthcare professional gives you medicine to lower your uric acid, you should keep taking it, even between attacks.