Why is this medication prescribed?
This combination of drugs is used to relieve tension headaches.
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
How should this medicine be used?
The combination of aspirin, butalbital, and caffeine comes as a capsule and tablet to take by mouth. It usually is taken every 4 hours as needed. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take aspirin, butalbital, and caffeine exactly as directed. Do not take more than six tablets or capsules in 1 day. If you think that you need more to relieve your symptoms, call your doctor.
This medication can be habit-forming. Do not take a larger dose, take it more often, or for a longer time than your doctor tells you to.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking aspirin, butalbital, and caffeine,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to aspirin, butalbital, caffeine, other pain relievers such as ibuprofen (Motrin), or any other drugs.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially acetazolamide (Diamox); anticoagulants ('blood thinners') such as warfarin (Coumadin); antidepressants; antihistamines; corticosteroids such as prednisone; medications for arthritis, gout, diabetes, or pain; methotrexate; sedatives; sleeping pills; tranquilizers; and vitamins.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney disease, porphyria, bleeding problems, nasal polyps, ulcers, or a history of depression.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, call your doctor.
- you should know that this drug may make you drowsy. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how this drug affects you.
- remember that alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this drug.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Aspirin, butalbital, and caffeine may cause an upset stomach. Take this medicine with food or milk.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Aspirin, butalbital, and caffeine may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- upset stomach
- stomach pain
If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- skin rash
- difficulty breathing
- ringing in the ears
- bloody or black stools
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature, away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA's Safe Disposal of Medicines website (http://goo.gl/c4Rm4p) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. This medication is a controlled substance. Prescriptions may be refilled only a limited number of times; ask your pharmacist if you have any questions.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
Brand names of combination products
- Farbital® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)¶
- Fiorinal® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)
- Fiormor® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)¶
- Fiortal® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)¶
- Fortabs® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)¶
- Idenal® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, and Caffeine)¶
- Isollyl® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)¶
- Laniroif® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)¶
- Lanorinal® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine)
¶ This branded product is no longer on the market. Generic alternatives may be available.