Pyridium

Pyridium relieves pain, burning and need to urinate urgently or frequently caused by irritation of the urinary tract. May turn urine orange or red. Do not use for more than 2 days.

Pyridium Overview

Updated: 

Pyridium is a medication used to relieve urinary pain, burning, urgency, and frequency associated with urinary tract infections. Pyridium is not an antibiotic; it does not cure infections.

Although the exact mechanism of action for Pyridium is unknown, it is a medication that has been used for many years to provide relief from urinary pain and discomfort.

This medication comes in tablet form and is taken three times a day after meals. Common side effects include red-orange or brown urine, headache, or upset stomach.  Pyridium can also cause dizziness.  Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how Pyridium affects you.

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Uses of Pyridium

Pyridium is a prescription medication used to relieve urinary tract pain, burning, irritation, and discomfort, as well as urgent and frequent urination caused by urinary tract infections, surgery, injury, or examination procedures.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses.  Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Pyridium Drug Class

Pyridium is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Pyridium

Serious side effects have been reported with Pyridium.  See the Pyridium precautions section.  Common side effects of Pyridium include the following:

  • Red-orange or brown colored urine (this is not harmful, but care should be taken to avoid staining clothing or other items)
  • Headache
  • Itching
  • Stomach upset (taking with or after meals may reduce stomach upset)

This is not a complete list of Pyridium side effects.  Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.  Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.  Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.  You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Pyridium Interactions

No drug interactions have been determined by the manufacturer.  However, you should tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.  Not all drug interactions are known or reported and new drug interactions are continually being reported.

Pyridium Precautions

Serious side effects have been reported with Pyridium including the following:

  • Yellowing of skin or eyes
  • Fever
  • Confusion
  • Skin discoloration (blue to bluish-purple)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Skin rash
  • Sudden decrease in amount of urine
  • Swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or legs

Pyridium can cause dizziness.  Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how Pyridium affects you.

Pyridium should not be used for more than 2 days.

Pyridium can interfere with laboratory tests, including urine tests for glucose (sugar) and ketones.

  • If you have diabetes, you should use Clinitest rather than Tes-Tape or Clinistix to test your urine for sugar. Urine tests for ketones (Acetest and Ketostix) may give false results. Before you have any tests, tell the laboratory personnel and doctor that you take this medication.

Pyridium can cause red-orange or brown colored urine. This is not harmful, but care should be taken to avoid staining clothing or other items.

Pyridium stains contact lenses. Avoid wearing contact lenses while taking this medicine.

Pyridium may cause teeth discoloration if the product has been broken or held in the mouth prior to swallowing.

Do not take Pyridium if you:

  • Are allergic to Pyridium or to any of its ingredients
  • Have renal impairment, including renal disease or renal failure

Pyridium Food Interactions

Medications can interact with certain foods.  In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods.  In the case of Pyridium, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving this medication.

Inform MD

Before taking Pyridium, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:

  • Are allergic to Pyridium or to any of its ingredients
  • Have kidney disease
  • Have sensitivities to glucose
  • have any allergies to foods, preservatives or dyes
  • Have a condition called Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency
  • Are pregnant or breastfeeding

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Pyridium and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy.  Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy. 

Pyridium falls into category B.  There are no well-done studies that have been done in humans with Pyridium. In animal studies, pregnant animals were given this medication, and the babies did not show any medical issues related to this medication.

Pyridium and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed.  It is not known if Pyridium crosses into human milk.  Because many medications can cross into human milk and because of the possibility for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants with the use of this medication, a choice should be made whether to stop nursing or stop the use of this medication.  Your doctor and you will decide if the benefits outweigh the risk of using Pyridium.

Pyridium Usage

Take Pyridium exactly as prescribed. 

Pyridium comes in tablet form and is taken three times daily after meals and with a full glass of water.

When taken with an antibiotic for the treatment of a urinary tract infection, do not exceed 2 days. If symptoms persist, talk to your doctor.

Pyridium may stain soft contact lenses and may be irreversible. Therefore, patients should not wear soft contact lenses while taking this medication.

If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember.  If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the regular time.  Do not take two doses of Pyridium at the same time.

Pyridium Dosage

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor.  Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

The recommended dose of Pyridium (phenazopyridine) is 200 mg three times per day after meals.  The maximum daily dose is 600 mg.

Pyridium Overdose

If you take too much Pyridium, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away. 

If Pyridium is administered by a healthcare provider in a medical setting, it is unlikely that an overdose will occur.  However, if overdose is suspected, seek emergency medical attention.

Other Requirements

  • Store Pyridium at room temperature (between 59 to 86 degrees F). 
  • Keep this and all medicines out of the reach of children.