Uceris (budesonide) is a prescription drug that’s used to help manage ulcerative colitis. The drug’s available as an oral tablet or rectal foam. Your dosage depends on the form you’re prescribed.

Uceris is prescribed for adults with active ulcerative colitis to induce (cause) remission. With remission, you have no symptoms or only mild symptoms.

Uceris belongs to a group of drugs called corticosteroids. Its active ingredient is budesonide. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.)

This article describes the dosages of Uceris, as well as its strengths and how it’s used. To learn more about Uceris, see this in-depth article.

This section describes the usual dosages of Uceris. Keep reading to learn more.

What are Uceris’s forms?

Uceris comes in two forms:

  • an extended-release (ER)* oral tablet
  • a rectal foam

* “ER” means the drug is slowly released into your body over a long period of time.

What strengths does Uceris come in?

Each form of Uceris comes in its own strength:

  • Each ER tablet is 9 milligrams (mg).
  • The rectal foam is delivered at 2 mg per metered dose.

What are the usual dosages of Uceris?

The information below describes dosages that are commonly recommended. But be sure to use the dosage your doctor prescribes for you. They’ll determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Dosage for ulcerative colitis

The table below shows the recommended dosages of Uceris by form for the management of ulcerative colitis.

oral ER tablet9 mgonce per day for 8 weeks
rectal foam2 mgtwice per day for 2 weeks, then once per day for 4 weeks

The rectal foam is prescribed to treat inflammation affecting the rectum or the far end of your large intestine (called the distal colon). The oral ER tablets can be used to treat inflammation affecting any part of the large intestine or rectum.

If you have questions about the dosage you’re prescribed, talk with your doctor.

Is Uceris used long term?

No, Uceris is typically used as a short-term treatment for 6–8 weeks, depending on the form you’re prescribed.

Talk with your doctor if you have questions about your treatment length.

Your doctor may prescribe one of two forms of Uceris: an extended-release (ER) oral tablet or a rectal foam.

How to take Uceris ER tablet

If you’re prescribed the ER tablets, you’ll swallow one tablet whole each morning. Do not crush, cut, or chew the tablet. This may affect how the medication works. If you have trouble swallowing tablets, see this article for tips on how to take this form of medication.

You can take the tablet with or without food. But do not drink grapefruit juice or eat grapefruit during your 6–8 weeks of treatment. Doing so can increase the levels of Uceris in your body and raise the risk of side effects.

How to use Uceris rectal foam

Uceris rectal foam comes in a kit with 28 single-use applicators and 2 canisters of Uceris.

If you’re prescribed the foam, you’ll administer Uceris once in the morning and once before bedtime every day for 2 weeks. Then, for the next 4 weeks, you’ll administer Uceris once per day.

Prior to administering each dose, you’ll attach a new applicator to the canister. The applicator is coated with a lubricant, but you can apply petroleum jelly (Vaseline) for extra lubrication if you like. Then you’ll gently insert the applicator into the rectum. To deliver a dose, you’ll press down on the canister pump. (If you think you might be ready to have a bowel movement soon, try to have it before administering the medication.)

You can talk with your doctor or pharmacist if you have questions about how to use the rectal foam. You can also view video instructions on the manufacturer’s website or read step-by-step written instructions in the drug’s prescribing information.

For information on the expiration, storage, and disposal of either form of Uceris, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. You can also read the “Uceris expiration, storage, and disposal” section of this article.

Accessible drug containers and labels

Some pharmacies provide medication labels that:

  • have large print
  • use braille
  • feature a code you can scan with a smartphone to change the text to audio

Your doctor or pharmacist may be able to recommend pharmacies that offer these accessibility features if your current pharmacy doesn’t.

Let your pharmacist know if you have trouble opening medication bottles. They may have tips to help, or they may be able to supply Uceris in an easy-open container.

If you miss a dose of Uceris, take or administer it as soon as you remember. But if it’s almost time to take your next dose, skip the missed dose and take or administer the next dose at its usual time. You should not have two doses at once to make up for a missed dose. Doing so could raise your risk of side effects.

If you’re unsure whether to take your next dose or skip it, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can guide you on what you should do about a missed dose.

If you need help remembering to take your dose of Uceris on time, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or downloading a reminder app on your phone.

It’s unlikely that Uceris causes dependence. Uceris is used for a short time and its effects are mostly within the large intestine and rectum. (With dependence, your body needs the drug to function as usual.)

Withdrawal symptoms are side effects that can occur when you stop taking a drug that your body has become dependent on. Since you’re unlikely to become dependent on Uceris, you shouldn’t have withdrawal symptoms when you complete your Uceris treatment.

However, some people may be switching to Uceris from another corticosteroid. (Uceris is also a corticosteroid.) Some of these corticosteroids, especially at high doses, can cause dependence.

If you’ve been taking a corticosteroid that’s known to cause dependence, such as prednisone, and your doctor switches you to Uceris, your doctor will monitor you closely for withdrawal symptoms. Examples of withdrawal symptoms from corticosteroids are fatigue, joint pain, body aches, and weakness.

If you have questions or concerns about dependence and withdrawal from corticosteroids, talk with your doctor.

Do not take or administer more Uceris than your doctor prescribes, as this can lead to harmful effects.

What to do in case you’ve taken or administered too much Uceris

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

Below are answers to some commonly asked questions about Uceris’s dosage.

How long does it take for Uceris to start working?

In studies of Uceris rectal foam, symptoms began to improve within 6 weeks of starting treatment. And in studies of the oral tablets, symptoms began to improve within 8 weeks of starting treatment.

Your experience with Uceris may be different. Talk with your doctor if you’d like to learn more about what to expect from your Uceris treatment.

Do older adults need to take a lower dose of Uceris?

It’s unknown if older adults (ages 65 years and older) should take a lower dose of Uceris. It’s unknown because too few older adults (ages 65 years and older) were included in studies of Uceris oral tablet and Uceris rectal foam.

The drug’s manufacturer warns that some older adults may have a higher risk of side effects from Uceris because certain health changes are more common in older adults. For example, some older adults may have decreased liver function or take other medications that can interact with Uceris.

Before starting treatment with Uceris, make sure your doctor knows about your other health conditions and all the medications you take. Also, let them know if you have any symptoms of an infection, such as a fever or rash.

If you have questions about your dosage of Uceris, talk with your doctor.

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

Remember, you should not change your dosage of Uceris without your doctor’s recommendation. Only take Uceris tablet or use Uceris rectal foam 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:

  • Which form of Uceris is best for me, the oral tablet or the rectal foam?
  • If my symptoms don’t improve, would you prescribe a higher dosage of Uceris?
  • When I’m taking Uceris rectal foam twice per day, do I have a greater risk of side effects?

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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.