Possible allergy to asacol
I was recently diagnosed with collagenous colitis and was prescribed AsacolHD (6 800 mg tabs/day). After a few days, various possible side-effects emerged: more diarrhea, headache, chest pain, shortness of breath,etc. After less than a week on Asacol, I developed flu-like symptoms and chills. My gastroenterologist advised me to stop me to stop the Asacol temporarily. He said that I probably have a virus and should resume again in a day or two.
I followed his advice and resumed taking the full dosage of Asacol for ~2 weeks. I developed overall body itch, swelling of the face, large hives(?) on my head, face, legs, and torso, chills, terrible diarrhea, abdominal pain, etc. At that point, I stopped taking Asacol. I was not able to speak to my doctor. I am, however, scheduled for a follow-up appointment on Oct.24.
I am an atopic individual and have numerous food allergies. However, the Asacol seemed to heighten the allergic and gastrointestinal response to various foods, like cooked fruit, that I normally tolerate in small amounts. It is interesting to note that the hive-like eruptions did not look like regular hives and took ~ 2 weeks to diminish significantly.
I am allergic to latex, nuts and seeds, most foods that have proteins that cross-react with latex, raw fruit, many raw vegetables, many spices, etc.
By Sept.23 (?) I started to develop flu-like symptoms, fever, exhaustian, malaise, bronchitis, etc. On the advice of a friend pulmonologist, I began inhaling Symbicort (2 inhalations, 4 times daily).
I am starting to feel better and decided to restart the Asacol. My allergist is not convinced that what I experienced was an allergic reaction to any of the ingredients of Asacol.
My questions are: How long does it take for a true allergic response to Asacol to exhibit itself. Did Asacol lower my immunity and make me more susceptible to catching the "flu"? Did I infact just have the flu coincidentally at the same time I was starting and then continuing with the Asacol? I started taking the Asacol again yesterday afternoon and so far I don't have any of the symptoms normally associated with an allergic reaction. My wheezing and bronchitis haven't worsened. Any thoughts on this?