If you have ulcerative colitis (UC), your doctor may suggest Lialda (mesalamine) as a treatment option. It’s a prescription medication used to treat mild to moderate UC in adults and some children.

Lialda belongs to a group of drugs called aminosalicylates, which help decrease inflammation in your intestines.

Lialda comes as a tablet you take by mouth.

This article describes the dosages of Lialda, as well as its form, strength, and how to take it. To learn more about Lialda, see this in-depth article.

Note: This article covers Lialda’s typical dosages, which are provided by the drug’s manufacturer. But when using Lialda, always take the dosage your doctor prescribes.

Find out more about Lialda’s dosage in this section.

What is Lialda’s form?

Lialda comes as a delayed-release tablet that you swallow whole. Delayed-release tablets have a special coating that lets them pass through your stomach before dissolving in your intestines. Lialda is released in the colon (large intestine) because that’s where it works.

What strength does Lialda come in?

Lialda is only available in one strength: 1.2 grams (g).

Since each tablet is 1.2 g, you may need to take multiple tablets to get your full dose. For example, a daily dosage of 4.8 g would mean taking four tablets once daily.

What are the typical dosages of Lialda for adults?

The information below describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. But be sure to take the dosage your doctor prescribes for you. Your doctor will determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Starting dosage

Your starting dosage will likely be 2.4 g to 4.8 g of Lialda once daily. This dosage may be higher than what you’ll end up taking long term. It’s meant to help relieve or clear up your inflammation and symptoms more quickly.

Maintenance dosage

After your symptoms are managed, you may take 2.4 g of Lialda once daily. This is called a maintenance dosage, and it helps prevent worsening of your condition.

What’s the dosage of Lialda for children?

Depending on your child’s weight, they may take a dosage of 2.4 g to 4.8 g once daily for the first 8 weeks. Then, their dosage may be adjusted to 1.2 g to 2.4 g once daily. A doctor will determine the right dosage based on your child’s weight.

Is Lialda used long term?

Yes, Lialda is typically used as a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that Lialda is safe and effective for you, you’ll likely take it for a long time.

Do not take more Lialda than your doctor prescribes. Taking more than this can lead to serious side effects.

If you take too much Lialda, you might experience a harmful reaction that could damage your liver or kidneys. If you have any of the symptoms below, seek medical help right away.

Symptoms of overdose

Symptoms of Lialda overdose can include:

What to do in case you take too much Lialda

Call your doctor right away if you think you’ve taken too much Lialda. You can also call 800-222-1222 to reach the American Association of Poison Control Centers, or use its online resource. But if you have severe symptoms, call 911 (or your local emergency number) immediately or go to the nearest emergency room.

The dosage of Lialda your doctor prescribes may depend on several factors, such as:

  • the severity of the condition you’re taking it to treat
  • your age
  • body weight (for children taking Lialda)
  • other conditions you may have

Lialda is a tablet that you’ll take by mouth with food. It should be swallowed whole. You’ll also need to drink plenty of fluids when taking this drug.

Each tablet is 1.2 g, so you may need to take multiple tablets to get your full dose. For example, a daily dose of 4.8 g will be four tablets taken once daily.

You should not crush or cut Lialda tablets. If you or your child has trouble swallowing these tablets, check out this article. You may also talk with your doctor about other treatment options.

For information on Lialda expiration, storage, and disposal, see this article.

If you miss a Lialda dose, you can take it as soon as you remember. But if it’s close to the time for your next dose, just take the next dose. Do not take two doses at once.

If you need help remembering to take your dose of Lialda on time, try a medication reminder like an alarm, a timer, or a phone app.

If you’re not sure whether to take a missed dose, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

The sections above describe the usual dosages provided by the drug manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Lialda for you, they’ll prescribe the dosage that’s right for you.

Remember, you should not change your dosage of Lialda unless your doctor recommends it. Only take Lialda exactly as prescribed. Talk with your doctor if you have questions or concerns about your current dosage.

Here are some examples of questions you may want to ask your doctor:

  • Should my dosage of Lialda change if I start feeling sick again?
  • Would a higher dosage of Lialda help manage my symptoms better?
  • Does my dosage of Lialda need to change based on other medications I take?
  • If I’m taking prednisone and it’s being tapered down, should my Lialda dose also change?

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If I’m having belly pain after starting Lialda, will decreasing the dose help this go away?



It’s not likely that your doctor would decrease your dose below 2.4 g. The usual dosage of Lialda for adults is 2.4 g to 4.8 g once daily.

Belly pain can be a side effect of Lialda at any dosage. But keep in mind that belly pain is also a common symptom of ulcerative colitis (UC), the condition Lialda is used to treat. It may take a few days or weeks before Lialda works to ease your UC symptoms, including belly pain.

If you have belly pain that’s sudden, severe, or occurs along with bloody diarrhea, tell your doctor right away. They may have you stop taking Lialda. But you should not stop or reduce your dose without checking with your doctor.

Patricia Weiser, PharmDAnswers represent the opinions of our medical experts. All content is strictly informational and should not be considered medical advice.
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Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.