Sulfasalazine Side Effects

Commonly reported side effects of sulfasalazine contain:

  • gastric misery
  • Head ache
  • nausea
  • oligospermia
  • vomiting
  • anorexia

Other negative effects include: temperature. See below to get an all-inclusive listing of effects that are adverse.

Important Side Effects

While taking sulfasalazine if the following side effects occur, seek advice from your physician immediately:

  • Aching of joints
  • Temperature
  • headache (continuing)
  • increased susceptibility of skin to sun
  • skin rash or itching
  • vomiting
  • Common:
  • Back, leg, or stomach pains
  • bleeding gums
  • bluish colour of the fingernails, lips, skin, palms, or nail beds
  • chills
  • Pee that is dark
  • Trouble breathing
  • Temperature
  • general body swelling
  • Head ache
  • Lack of desire
  • nausea
  • nosebleeds
  • Light skin
  • sore throat
  • troubled breathing with exertion
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • Yellowing of skin or the eyes

Minor Side Effects

Some side effects that are sulfasalazine might not require any medical attention. These negative effects might evaporate as the body gets used to the medication. Your health care professional might have the ability to assist you to reduce or prevent these negative effects, however do check with them should you be worried about them, or if the following side effects continue:


  • Abdominal or stomach pain or upset
  • Reduced weight
  • Welts

Less common or uncommon:

  • Discoloration of pee or skin
  • Hair thinning or thinning of the hair
  • swelling or inflammation of the mouth

For Medical Professionals


The most frequent side effects reported were lack of desire, raised temperature, erythema, pruritus, rash, anorexia, headache, nausea, vomiting, gastric distress, and reversible oligospermia.

Common side effects included:

  • temperature
  • urticaria
  • Heinz body anemia
  • hemolytic anemia
  • cyanosis

Frequency of side effects increased with daily doses of 4 g or whole serum sulfapyridine levels above 50 mcg/mL, or more.


  • Quite common (10% or more): Nausea (up to 33%), vomiting (up to 33%), gastric distress (about 33%), dyspepsia (13%)
  • Common (1% to 10%): Stomach pain, diarrhea, stomatitis
  • Necrotizing pancreatitis, frequency not reported:
    • Afflicted folic acid absorption
    • afflicted digoxin absorption
    • neutropenic enterocolitis
    • hemorrhagic colitis
    • bloody diarrhea
  • Advertising reports:
    • Pseudomembranous colitis
    • pancreatitis
    • parotitis
    • worsening ulcerative colitis

Nervous system

After receiving sulfasalazine transverse myelitis developed. All symptoms resolved within 2 months.

  • Quite common (10% or more): Head Ache (up to 33%)
  • Common (1% to 10%): Dizziness, taste disorders, tinnitus
  • Unusual (0.1% to 1%): Convulsions, vertigo
  • Frequency not reported:
    • Meningitis
    • neuropathy
    • transverse myelitis
    • passing lesions of the posterior spinal column
    • cauda equina syndrome
    • Guillain-Barre syndrome
    • hearing loss
    • drowsiness
    • neurotoxicity
    • dysphasia
    • acute encephalopathy
    • monoparesis
    • cerebrospinal fluid abnormalities
    • altered taste
    • peripheral neuritis
  • Postmarketing reports:
    • Aseptic meningitis
    • ataxia
    • encephalopathy
    • peripheral neuropathy
    • odor illnesses


Angioedema metabolized to mesalamine or was reported during postmarketing experience together with using products.

The chance of Stevens-Johnson syndrome or toxic epidermal necrolysis raised mainly together with using sulfonamides; yet, these occurrences were uncommon in general.

  • Quite common (10% or more): Rash (up to 13%)
  • Common (1% to 10%): Pruritus, urticaria
  • Unusual (0.1% to 1%): Alopecia
  • Frequency not reported:
    • Toxic epidermal necrolysis (Lyell’s syndrome)
    • skin discoloration
    • erythema multiforme
    • parapsoriasis varioliformis acuta (Mucha-Haberman syndrome)
    • generalized skin eruptions
    • petechiae
  • Postmarketing reports:
    • Angioedema
    • purpura
    • epidermal necrolysis (Lyell’s syndrome)
    • Stevens-Johnson syndrome
    • drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS)
    • hazardous pustuloderma
    • erythema
    • exanthema
    • exfoliative dermatitis
    • periorbital edema
    • lichen planus
    • photosensitivity


  • Common (1% to 10%): Cough
  • Unusual (0.1% to 1%): Dyspnea
  • Frequency not reported:
    • Pulmonary infiltrates (often accompanied by eosinophilia)
    • pneumonitis (with or without eosinophilia)
    • pleuritis
    • bronchiolitis obliterans
    • lung toxicity (may mimic Wegener’s granulomatosis)
  • Postmarketing reports:
    • interstitial lung disorder
    • Oropharyngeal malady
    • fibrosing alveolitis
    • eosinophilic infiltration
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