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Brand & Generic Names

Fivent Opticrom
Gastrocrom Rynacrom
Intal Sodium Cromoglycate
Nalcrom Vistacrom

Basic Information

  • Habit forming? No
  • Prescription needed? Yes
  • Available as generic? No
  • Drug class: Antiasthmatic, anti-inflammatory (non-steroidal)


  • Powdered form and nebulizer solution prevent asthma attacks. Will not stop an active asthma attack.
  • Eye drops treat inflammation of covering to eye and cornea.
  • Nasal spray reduces nasal allergic symptoms.
  • Capsules prevent allergic symptoms.

Dosage & Usage Information

How to take:
------- Inhaler Follow instructions enclosed with inhaler. Don't swallow cartridges for inhaler. Gargle and rinse mouth after inhalations. --------- Eye drops
Wash hands.
Apply pressure to inside corner of eye with middle finger.
Continue pressure for 1 minute after placing medicine in eye.
Tilt head backward. Pull lower lid away from eye with index finger of the same hand.
Drop eye drops into pouch and close eye.
Don't blink. Keep eyes closed for 1 to 2 minutes.
Don't touch applicator tip to any surface (including the eye). If you accidentally touch tip, clean with warm soap and water.
Keep container tightly closed.
Keep cool, but don't freeze.
Wash hands immediately after using.

Nasal solution Follow prescription instructions -------- Capsules Swallow with liquid. If you can't swallow whole, open capsule and take with liquid or food.

When to take:
At the same times each day. If you also use a bronchodilator inhaler, use the bronchodilator before the cromolyn.

If you forget a dose:
Take as soon as you remember up to 2 hours late. If more than 2 hours, wait for next scheduled dose (don't double this dose).

What drug does:
Blocks histamine release from mast cells.

Time lapse before drug works:
For inhaler forms: 4 weeks for prevention of asthma attacks. However, if taken 10-15 minutes after exercise or exposure to known allergens, may prevent wheezing.
1 to 2 weeks for nasal symptoms; only a few days for eye symptoms.

Don't take with:
Any other medicine without consulting your doctor or pharmacist.


Increased side effects and adverse reactions listed.


    Overdose unlikely to threaten life. If person inhales much larger amount than prescribed, call doctor, poison-control center or hospital emergency room for instructions.

Possible Adverse Reactions or Side Effects


    Hives, rash, intense Seek emergency itching, faintness treatment immediately. soon after a dose (anaphylaxis).


    Cough, dry mouth.


  • Rash, hives, swallowing difficulty, nausea, vomiting, increased wheezing, joint pain or swelling, sneezing, nasal burning, weakness, muscle pain, difficult or painful urination.
  • Drowsiness, dizziness, headache, watery eyes, stuffy nose, throat irritation, insomnia.


    Nosebleed, numbness or tingling in feet or hands, hoarseness.

Warnings & Precautions

Don't take if:
You use the dry powder form of cromolyn and if you are allergic to cromolyn, lactose, milk or milk products.

Before you start, consult your doctor:

  • If you plan to become pregnant within medication period.
  • If you have kidney or liver disease.

Over age 60:
Adverse reactions and side effects may be more frequent and severe than in younger persons.

No proven harm to unborn child, but avoid if possible. Consult doctor.

Effects unknown. Confer with your doctor.

Infants & children:
Use only under medical supervision.

Prolonged use:
No problems expected.

Skin & sunlight:
No problems expected.

Driving, piloting or hazardous work:
No problems expected.

No problems expected.


  • Inhaler must be cleaned and work well for drug to be effective.
  • Treatment with inhalation cromolyn does not stop an acute asthma attack. It may aggravate it.

Possible Interaction with Other Drugs

------------------------ -----------------------
Cortisone drugs* Increased cortisone effect in
treating asthma. Cortisone dose may
be decreased.
Ipratroprium Increased cromolyn effect.

Possible Interaction with Other Substances

--------------- ---------------
Alcohol: None expected.
Beverages: None expected.
Cocaine: None expected.
Foods: None expected.
Marijuana: None expected.
Tobacco: None expected, but tobacco smoke
aggravates asthma and eye
irritation. Avoid.

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