Generic Name: dapsone (DAP sone)Brand Names:
What is dapsone?
Dapsone is an antiinfective medication.
Dapsone is used in the treatment of dermatitis herpetiformis (a skin condition) and leprosy (Hansen's disease).
Dapsone may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.
What is the most important information I should know about dapsone?In rare cases, dapsone has been associated with serious, and sometimes fatal blood and liver problems. Contact your doctor immediately if you experience a sore throat, fever, pale skin, bruising or pinpoint red spots on the skin, or yellowing of the skin or eyes. These may be symptoms of blood or liver problems. Contact your doctor immediately if you develop a rash while taking dapsone. In rare cases, dapsone has been associated with serious, and sometimes fatal, skin reactions.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking dapsone?Do not take dapsone without first talking to your doctor if you have
glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency-
methemoglobin reductase deficiency (hemoglobin M)- or
You may not be able to take dapsone, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring if you have any of the conditions listed above.Dapsone is in the FDA pregnancy category C. This means that it is not known whether it will be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not take dapsone without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or could become pregnant during treatment. Dapsone passes into breast milk and may affect a nursing baby. Do not take dapsone without first talking to your doctor if you are nursing a baby.
How should I take dapsone?
Take dapsone exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these instructions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.Take each dose with a full glass of water.
Taking dapsone with food may decrease stomach upset, should it occur.
It is important to take dapsone regularly to get the most benefit.
Your doctor may want you to have blood tests or other forms of monitoring during treatment with dapsone.Store dapsone at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the dose you missed and take only the 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 if an overdose is suspected.
Symptoms of a dapsone overdose may include nausea, vomiting, excitation, seizures, and bluish skin color.
What should I avoid while taking dapsone?Avoid prolonged exposure to sunlight. Dapsone may increase the sensitivity of the skin to sunlight and sunburn may be more likely to occur. If exposure to the sun is unavoidable, wear a sunscreen and protective clothing.
Dapsone side effectsIn rare cases, dapsone has been associated with serious, and sometimes fatal blood and/or liver problems. Contact your doctor immediately if you experience a sore throat, fever, pale skin, bruising or pinpoint red spots on the skin, or yellowing of the skin or eyes. These may be symptoms of blood or liver problems. Contact your doctor immediately if you develop a rash while taking dapsone. In rare cases, dapsone has been associated with serious, and sometimes fatal, skin reactions. If you experience any of the following serious side effects, seek emergency medical attention or contact your doctor immediately:
an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing- closing of the throat- swelling of the lips, tongue, or face- or hives)-
bluish skin color-
numbness or tingling-
dark colored urine or pale colored stools- or
Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Notify your doctor if you experience
nausea or vomiting-
ringing in the ears-
increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight.
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. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Dapsone Dosing Information
Usual Adult Dose for Leprosy -- Lepromatous:
50 to 100 mg orally once a day for 2-5 years.
Usual Adult Dose for Leprosy -- Tuberculoid:
100 mg orally once a day for 6 months. Rifampin is additionally recommended to reduce the incidence of dapsone resistance. If the disease relapses, this regimen should be repeated.
Usual Adult Dose for Dermatitis Herpetiformis:
50 mg orally once a day continued on a life-long basis. Dosage may be advanced to 300 mg/day. Dosage reduction to a minimum maintenance level as soon as possible is recommended.
Usual Adult Dose for Pneumocystis Pneumonia:
100 mg orally once a day for 14 to 21 days. Used in combination with trimethoprim.
Usual Adult Dose for Pneumocystis Pneumonia Prophylaxis:
100 mg orally twice a week. Therapy should be continued on a life-long basis. The addition of pyrimethamine appears to significantly increase the activity of dapsone for PCP prophylaxis.
Usual Adult Dose for Toxoplasmosis -- Prophylaxis:
100 mg orally twice a week continued on a life-long basis.
Usual Pediatric Dose for Leprosy:
1 to 2 mg/kg (up to 100 mg) orally once a day.
Usual Pediatric Dose for Pneumocystis Pneumonia Prophylaxis:
> 1 month:2 mg/kg/day (up to 100 mg) orally once a day.Alternate dosing:> 1 month:4 mg/kg orally once weekly. Maximum dose = 200 mg.
Usual Pediatric Dose for Toxoplasmosis -- Prophylaxis:
> 1 month:2 mg/kg/day (or 15 mg/m2) orally once a day. Maximum dose = 25 mg. Dapsone should be administered as part of combination therapy for prophylaxis of toxoplasmosis.
What other drugs will affect dapsone?
Many other drugs can interact with dapsone, especially those that may also affect the blood. Do not take any other prescription or over-the-counter medicines, including vitamins, minerals, and herbal products, during treatment with dapsone without first talking to your doctor.
Where can I get more information?
Your pharmacist has more information about dapsone written for health professionals that you may read.
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.
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