PRECAUTIONS General Increasing the dose does not increase the diuresis and may increase the incidence of drowsiness and/or paresthesia. Increasing the dose often results in a decrease in diuresis. Under certain circumstances, however, very large doses have been given in conjunction with other diuretics in order to secure diuresisin complete refractory failure. Information for Patients Adverse reactions common to all sulfonamide derivatives may occur: anaphylaxis, fever, rash (including erythema multiforme, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis), crystalluria, renal calculus, bone marrow depression, thrombocytopenic purpura, hemolytic anemia, leukopenia, pancytopenia and agranulocytosis. Precaution is advised for early detection of such reactions and the drug should be discontinued and appropriate therapy instituted. In patients with pulmonary obstruction or emphysema where alveolar ventilation may be impaired, acetazolamide, which may precipitate or aggravate acidosis, should be used with caution. Gradual ascent is desirable to try to avoid acute mountain sickness. If rapid ascent is undertaken and acetazolamide tablets are used, it should be noted that such use does not obviate the need for prompt descent if severe forms of high altitude sickness occur, i.e., high altitude pulmonary edema(HAPE) or high altitude cerebral edema. Caution is advised for patients receiving concomitant high-dose aspirin and acetazolamide, as anorexia, tachypnea, lethargy, coma and death have been reported (see WARNINGS ). Laboratory Tests To monitor for hematologic reactions common to all sulfonamides, it isrecommended that a baseline CBC and platelet count be obtained on patients prior to initiating acetazolamide tablet therapy and at regular intervals during therapy. If significant changes occur, early discontinuance and institution of appropriate therapy are important. Periodic monitoring of serum electrolytes is recommended. Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility Long-term studies in animals to evaluate the carcinogenic potential of acetazolamide have not been conducted. In a bacterial mutagenicity assay, acetazolamide was not mutagenic when evaluated with and without metabolic activation. The drug had no effect on fertility when administered in the diet to male and female rats at a daily intake of up to 4 times the recommended human dose of 1000 mg in a 50 kg individual. Pregnancy Teratogenic Effects Pregnancy Category C Acetazolamide, administered orally or parenterally, has been shown to be teratogenic (defects of the limbs) in mice, rats, hamsters and rabbits. There are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Acetazolamide should be used in pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus. NURSING MOTHERS Because of the potential for serious adverse reaction in nursing infants from acetazolamide, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother. Pediatric Use The safety and effectiveness of acetazolamide in pediatric patients has not been established.