Patient Education

Medications

Diamox®
Generic name

Acetazolamide

Concentration

125 mg, 250 mg, 500 mg (sustained release)

Mechanism of action

This is a carbonic anhydrase inhibitor that helps reduce pressure within the eye (intraocular pressure) by decreasing fluid (aqueous humor) production.

Indications

Treatment of open angle glaucoma, secondary glaucoma, and acute angle-closure glaucoma.

Dosage

Take by mouth one 125 mg or 250 mg capsule, 1 to 4 times per day, as directed by your doctor. For the 500 mg Diamox Sequels, take one capsule by mouth twice per day.

Use with caution in patients with/during:
  1. Asthma or chronic pulmonary disease (COPD, emphysema, bronchitis, respiratory acidosis)
  2. Diabetes mellitis because it can increase blood glucose levels
  3. Renal or liver impairment
  4. Gout
  5. Taking high doses of aspirin
  6. Sulfonamide hypersensitivity
  7. Underactive adrenal glands
  8. Low potassium or sodium levels
  9. Pregnancy, breastfeeding, or in children
Common Side Effects
  • Loss of appetite
  • Metallic taste
  • Diarrhea
  • Weakness
  • Tingling sensation in hands or feet or mouth area
  • Hearing disturbance
  • Ringing in the ears
Life-Threatening Symptoms
  • Convulsions
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Unusual bleeding
  • Severe skin rash or eruptions
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
Less Common to Rare Side Effects
  • Bone marrow suppression
  • Jaundice (shows up as yellowish eyes or skin) with prolonged use
  • Mood changes
  • Depression
  • Blood dyscrasias (abnormal synthesis of different components of the blood)
  • Confusion
  • Blood in urine; discolored urine
  • Drowsiness
  • Easy bleeding or bruising
  • Lower back pain
  • Numbness, tingling, or burning feeling in the mouth, tongue, or lips
Notes

Acetazolamide is a sulfonamide and may cause a severe allergic reaction in patients with a sulfa drug allergy.