Ursodiol (By mouth)
Gastrointestinal Agent (About this – PubMed Health)
Uses of This Medicine
Ursodiol is used to dissolve gallstones in patients who do not need to have their gallbladders removed or in those in whom surgery should be avoided because of other medical problems. However, ursodiol works only in those patients whose gallstones are made of cholesterol and works best when these stones are small and of the “floating” type. It is also used to help prevent gallstones in patients who are on rapid weight-loss programs.
Ursodiol is also used to treat primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC). PBC is an autoimmune disorder that causes a patient’s liver to have problems and not work properly.
This medicine is available only with your doctor’s prescription.
Once a medicine has been approved for marketing for a certain use, experience may show that it is also useful for other medical problems. Although these uses are not included in product labeling, ursodiol is used in certain patients with the following medical conditions:
Chronic liver disease.
Liver transplant (to help reduce the risk of rejection).
Other uses (PubMed Health)
How To Use
Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to use. Do not use more than directed.
It is best to take this medicine with food or milk.
Urso Forte® tablet can be broken in half, if needed. Place the tablet on a flat surface with the score (groove) on top. Hold the tablet with your thumbs close to the groove then apply gentle pressure until the tablet breaks apart. Swallow the half tablet with water. Do not chew.
Gallstone treatment: Keep using the medicine for your full treatment time. It may take several months for the medicine to dissolve gallstones.
If a dose is missed:
Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Half tablets can be used for up to 28 days when kept in the medicine bottle. Store half tablets separately from whole tablets, because the half tablets have a bitter taste.
Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using an antacid that contains aluminum (ALternaGEL®, Gaviscon®, Maalox®, Mylanta®), medicine to lower cholesterol (such as cholestyramine, clofibrate, colestipol, Atromid-S®, Colestid®, Questran®), estrogen, or birth control pills.
When Not To Use
Your doctor will do lab tests at regular visits to check on the effects of this medicine. Keep all appointments.
Possible side effects
Summary More details
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
Severe stomach pain especially on the right upper side
Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet
Unusual bleeding or bruising
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
Indigestion or bitter taste in your mouth
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
More side effects of this drug
Brand names include
Actigall, Urso, Urso 250, Urso Forte
There may be other brand names for this medicine.