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Generic Name: Zafirlukast (za-FIR-loo-kast)
Brand Name: Accolate

Zafirlukast is used for:

Prevention and long-term treatment of asthma in patients 5 years of age and older. It should not be used to treat acute asthma attacks. The medicine may be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Zafirlukast is a leukotriene receptor antagonist. It works by blocking the action of certain chemicals that are responsible for some forms of asthma.

Do NOT use Zafirlukast if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Zafirlukast

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Zafirlukast :

Some medical conditions may interact with Zafirlukast . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have liver problems

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Zafirlukast . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Oral blood thinners (eg, warfarin) because the actions and side effects, including increased risk of bleeding, may be increased by Zafirlukast . If you are taking an oral anticoagulant with Zafirlukast , your doctor should monitor your prothrombin time and adjust your dose accordingly
  • Terfenadine because its actions and side effects may be increased when taken with Zafirlukast
  • Theophyllines (eg, aminophylline) because the effectiveness of these medicines could be decreased or actions and side effects could be increased

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Zafirlukast may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Zafirlukast :

Use Zafirlukast as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take Zafirlukast on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after eating.
  • Try to take Zafirlukast at the same time each day.
  • Continue to take Zafirlukast even if you feel better.
  • Do not miss any doses. If you miss a dose of Zafirlukast , take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Zafirlukast .

Important safety information:

  • Zafirlukast will not stop an asthma attack once one has started. If you are also using a bronchodilator inhaler, be sure to always carry the bronchodilator inhaler with you to use during asthma attacks.
  • Contact your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse while you are using Zafirlukast .
  • If your doctor tells you that you have had liver damage due to use of Zafirlukast , never take Zafirlukast again.
  • LAB TESTS, including liver function tests, may be performed to monitor your progress and to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Zafirlukast is not recommended for use in CHILDREN younger than 5 years of age. Safety and effectiveness in this age group have not been established. Use Zafirlukast with extreme caution in CHILDREN between 5 and 6 years of age.
  • PREGNANCY AND BREAST-FEEDING: If you plan on becoming pregnant, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using Zafirlukast during pregnancy. Zafirlukast is excreted in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Zafirlukast .

Possible side effects of Zafirlukast :

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Diarrhea; headache; nausea.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); dark urine; fever; flu-like symptoms; itching; joint or muscle aches and pains; loss of appetite; persistent nausea or stomach pain; tiredness; yellowing of the eyes or skin.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or at

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of Zafirlukast :

Store Zafirlukast at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Zafirlukast out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Zafirlukast , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Zafirlukast is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Zafirlukast . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Issue Date: November 1, 2006
Database Edition
Copyright © 2006 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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