Strange reaction to Canasa

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Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 1/29/2008 10:55 PM (GMT -6)   
I've finally tried Canasa again. about four months ago I was pretty sure that it wasn't helping my minor flare and then I started to worry if it was making things worse.

Well, the only thing that seems to work for me now is Cortifoam and I'm not too happy about that. Even though I know the dose of steroids isn't too terrible, I'd much rather use something else. So I tried the Canasa again and suddenly I was up 3 times during the night to run to the bathroom with diarrhea. I haven't been up in the middle of the night like that in nearly a year!

But here's the strange thing -- it actually helped stop the bleeding for half a day and added some bulk to the stool. So in some ways, I actually think it's working. But I need to sleep! So I guess it's back to Cortifoam tonight.

Anyone have any ideas? Maybe I should just use it on the weekend when I can afford to be up during the night? Or give up trying? Has anyone used Canasa and had a bad reaction that eventually went away?

Thanks, everyone!
UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it.

Elite Member

Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 30828
   Posted 1/30/2008 3:58 AM (GMT -6)   
I think the Canasa isn't enough medicine nor does it go high enough to deal with the area that's inflamed.

I'm not clear on whether or not you were on cortifoam first then did the canasa...or were flaring and only tried the canasa.

Did you only use it once at night? You can use it up to 3 times daily.

I think you should give it a fair chance to see how it can work for you.

Can you not use the 5ASA enemas...and I've probably asked you that before, but can't remember.

*Heather*Status: mini flare Dec 28... tapered to every second night
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~5ASA: Asacol (6 daily) + Salofalk enemas (increase for flares tapered to maintenance)
~Bentylol (dicyclomine) 20mg as needed
~Probiotic 3(Natural Factors Protec) bedtime + 1 (Primadophilus Reuteri) occasionally
~multi-digestive enzymes as needed ....bromelain 1 - 2x daily
~Ranitidine,Pariet (reflux) Effexor XR 75mg;  Pulmicort/Airomir (asthma)
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS"  worth it !!!

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 1/30/2008 8:01 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, Heather, for the reply!

So here's what I did: I've been starting to flare for about 1 week now. I was using Cortifoam once a day (at bedtime) for about a week. Seeing no results yet, my doctor told me to add Canasa in the morning. I suggested Canasa at night instead because I didn't want to try it and then go off to work! I used the Canasa 1 time at night and that's when I was up several times in the night running to the bathroom. The next morning I was also feeling lousy (D, but no blood) and I used the Cortifoam before work.

I had blood in the afternoon but at least it wasn't with D, but more normal-seeming stuff.

Last night I went back to the Cortifoam and this morning, I have to say that I'm seeing some big improvement. No blood, soft stool and mucus, but not D.

To answer your question -- I've never had much luck with 5ASA drugs. I used Rowasa on and off for years even though I never really saw great improvement with it. It would stop bleeding but not help otherwise with the flare.

Do you think that the Cortifoam is absorbed higher than the Canasa? I hadn't thought of that before.

I'm tempted to try the Canasa again this weekend when I don't have to worry about work in the morning.

I feel like I'm on the upswing out of the minor flare... so at least I'm started the day with optimism!
UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 733
   Posted 1/30/2008 10:08 AM (GMT -6)   
I've heard Canasa referred to as "butt bombs" which is a good description if you ask me. They gave me very loose stools and I hated them. If they are preventing you from getting proper rest, I would quit them. It's better to get a full night's rest. You could give them a longer try, I gave them a fair try, but they continued to cause D and urgency and I had to stop them.
Diagnosed with Left-sided Ulcerative Colitis 1995 at 15, Tried: Prednisone, Rowasa & Hydrocort. Enemas, Proctofoam, Sulfasalazine, Asacol, Probiotics, Fish Oil, Canasa, Enotcort, Colazol, Anamantle, etc... had almost recto-vaginal fistula in 2004, put on Remicade, August 2007:Increased Remicade dosage-700mg every 6 weeks,diagnosed w/ Psoriatic Arthritis & Fibromyalgia Current meds: Remicade 700mgs every 6 wks (had reaction, will start Humira Feb 11) Clorazepate, Proctofoam HC, Glucosamine 500, Vitamin B, Lomotil,  Tylenol pm, Lyrica for Fibromyalgia started 1/17/08

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23551
   Posted 1/30/2008 10:13 AM (GMT -6)   
I can't tolerate neither Rowasa nor Canasa because it does the same thing to me that it does to you. Maybe a bit more worse though. Some people just can't tolerate mesalamines. So if they bother you, then you should let your GI know. If the Cortifoam doesn't give you the desired results you can always try Colocort too. These reach higher into the colon then the foam.
Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC
~Left sided Uc -'92 - Colazal (9 daily), 6mp (50-100mgs), Colocort, Prilosec, Biotin, Forvia, Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa** ~Allergies - Allegra & Singulair
~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome - '04 - Norvasc~Fibromyalgia - '06~No meds
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