Drug Name

Brand Name(s)

Drug Class
Prescription medication

Febuxostat is used to lower uric acid in the blood, to prevent attacks of gout.

Febuxostat is not used to treat inflammatory arthritis or osteoarthritis.

  • How is febuxostat administered?

    Febuxostat is taken orally in pill form.

  • What is the typical dose and when do I take it?

    Febuxostat is available in 80mg tablets.

    The usual dose is between 40 – 80mg taken once daily

  • How long will it take to work?

    Be patient, you will not feel the effects of febuxostat right away. It may take a few weeks to feel the effects.  The chance of gout attacks may be higher for a few months after your start taking this medication.  It is important to keep taking the medication unless told otherwise by a healthcare professional.

    To provide symptom relief while you are waiting for febuxostat to work and to protect against gout flares, your prescriber may recommend you take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) or colchicine.

  • When should I not take febuxostat and call my doctor? (concern/action)

    Febuxostat should not be started new during an acute gout attack as it may make the attack worse.   

    Febuxostat has not been well studied in pregnant or nursing women.  Talk to your healthcare provider if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.  

    Febuxostat interacts with a number of other medications. Please speak with your healthcare provider about whether any of the other medications you currently take interact with febuxostat.

    Anyone who is hypersensitive to febuxostat or has had a previous allergic reaction to allopurinol should avoid the medication.

  • What are the side effects of febuxostat?

    Febuxostat is generally well tolerated. More common side effects of febuxostat include stomach upset and joint pain/aching.

    Rarely febuxostat can cause a rash. If you develop a rash while taking febuxostat stop the medication and contact your healthcare provider.

    A rare, but serious side effect of febuxostat is that the medication may increase your risk of heart attack and stroke.  Please discuss this with your prescriber prior to starting febuxostat

  • What helps to reduce side effects?

    Take your febuxostat as prescribed and contact your healthcare provider if you have any concerns while taking the medication.

    Drinking alcohol can flare your gout. It is best to avoid alcohol if you have gout.

  • Do I need any monitoring while taking febuxostat?

    When you begin taking febuxostat your prescriber may request blood work every 2 – 4 months for a period of time. This will help make sure that the medication is not affecting your liver. If you have no issues with the medication during this time, blood tests will be required less frequently.

This information was last updated November 2017, with expert advice from:

Jason Kielly, B.Sc. (pharm.), Pharm.D.
Assistant Professor, School of Pharmacy, Memorial University of Newfoundland
Clinical Pharmacist, Rheumatic Health Program, Eastern Health

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