Lialda (mesalamine) is a prescription brand-name medication. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it to treat ulcerative colitis in adults and certain children. To use this drug, children must weigh at least 24 kilograms, which is about 53 pounds.

Ulcerative colitis is a chronic (long-term) condition. You’ll likely take Lialda long term if you and your doctor agree that it’s working to ease your symptoms.

Lialda comes as delayed-release oral tablets. (Delayed-release means that the medication is designed to slowly release the dose over time.)

Lialda contains the active drug mesalamine and is classified as an aminosalicylate. Mesalamine is also the generic version of Lialda.

For information about the dosage of Lialda, including its form, strength, and how to take the drug, keep reading. For a comprehensive look at Lialda, see this article.

This article describes typical dosages for Lialda provided by the drug’s manufacturer. When taking Lialda, always follow the dosage prescribed by your doctor.

Below is information about common Lialda dosages.

Lialda form

Lialda comes as delayed-release oral tablets. (Delayed-release means that the medication is designed to slowly release the dose over time.)

Lialda strength

Lialda delayed-released oral tablets are available in one strength: 1.2 grams (g).

Typical dosages

The following information describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. However, be sure to follow the dosage instructions your doctor prescribes for you. Your doctor will determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Dosage for ulcerative colitis

For treating ulcerative colitis (UC) in adults, you’ll usually start by taking 2.4 g to 4.8 g of Lialda once per day. This is two to four 1.2-g tablets.

The starting dosage is meant to induce remission, which refers to treating your symptoms until they get better or go away. The maximum (highest) dosage of Lialda that’s recommended is 4.8 g per day.

Your doctor will then typically switch you to the maintenance (“normal”) dosage of 2.4 g once per day. This is two 1.2-g tablets. The maintenance dosage is used to maintain remission in adults with UC. “Remission” refers to being free from UC symptoms.

Long-term use

Lialda is meant to be used as a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that Lialda is safe and effective for you, you’ll likely take it long term.

Children’s dosage

For treating UC in children who weigh at least 24 kilograms (about 53 pounds), Lialda dosages are based on weight.

The chart below details pediatric (children’s) dosing for Lialda. Kilograms and pounds are abbreviated as kg and lb.

Child’s weightDosage for weeks 0 to 8Dosage after week 8
24 kg to 35 kg (about 53 lb to 77 lb)2.4 g (two tablets)1.2 g (one tablet)
more than 35 kg to 50 kg (about 77 lb to 110 lb)3.6 g (three tablets)2.4 g (two tablets)
more than 50 kg (about 110 lb)4.8 g (four tablets)2.4 g (two tablets)

As this chart shows, the maximum dosage of Lialda for children depends on their weight. Their prescribed dose of Lialda is taken once per day.

If you have questions about the Lialda dosage for your child, talk with their doctor.

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about Lialda dosing.

Is Lialda prescribed for Crohn’s disease? If so, what’s the dosage for this use?

Lialda isn’t approved to treat Crohn’s disease. But the drug may be prescribed off-label for this use. (Off-label use is when a drug is prescribed to treat a condition that it isn’t approved for.)

If your doctor determines that taking Lialda for Crohn’s disease is right for you, they can advise you on the proper dosage. You can talk with them if you have any questions.

What’s the dosage for the generic version of Lialda?

The dosage for the generic version of Lialda is the same as the dosage for the brand-name product. Mesalamine is the generic version of Lialda.

For information about Lialda’s dosages, see the “Lialda dosage” section above. You can also talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

What’s the dosage of Lialda vs. Apriso?

Lialda and Apriso bothcontain mesalamine as the active drug, but their dosages aren’t the same. This is because the two medications are used to treat ulcerative colitis (UC) in different ways.

Lialda is approved for use in adults with UC to induce remission (cause symptoms to ease or go away) or maintain remission (keep you free from symptoms). The drug is also used to treat UC in certain children.

Apriso, on the other hand, is approved only to maintain remission of UC in adults.

To learn the specifics of Lialda’s dosage, see the “Lialda dosage” section above. For details about Apriso’s dosage, see this article. To learn more about how Lialda and Apriso compare, you can refer to this article. You can also talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

The Lialda dosage your doctor prescribes will depend on several factors. These include:

Other medical conditions you have can also affect your Lialda dosage.

Lialda comes as delayed-release tablets that you swallow. (Delayed-release means that the medication is designed to slowly release the dose over time.)

You may take your dose at any time of day. But taking Lialda at the same time each day may make it easier to remember to take it.

You should take Lialda with food. It’s also important to stay hydrated while taking Lialda. Staying hydrated helps prevent kidney stones, which is a possible side effect of the drug. (To learn more about side effects of Lialda, see this article.)

It’s important to note that you should not crush, split, or chew Lialda tablets. They have a special coating that helps prevent the drug from being released until it reaches your lower intestine. (If the drug is released before that, it would not be as effective.) Crushing, splitting, or chewing Lialda tablets may damage this delayed-release coating.

You should take Lialda according to your doctor’s instructions. Talk with them if you have questions about how to take the medication.

If you miss a dose of Lialda, take it as soon as you remember. But if it’s the next day or almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose. Then, take your next dose at the regular time.

You should not take more than one dose to try to make up for the missed dose. This could increase your risk of side effects from Lialda. (For more about side effects of Lialda, see this article.)

To help make sure that you don’t miss a dose, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or using a timer. You could also download a reminder app on your phone.

If you take more Lialda than your doctor prescribes, you may develop serious side effects.

It’s important that you do not take more Lialda than your doctor advises.

Symptoms of an overdose

Symptoms of a Lialda overdose can include:

If you take more than the recommended amount of Lialda

Call your doctor right away if you believe you’ve taken too much Lialda. Another option is to call the American Association of Poison Control Centers at 800-222-1222 or use its online tool. If you have severe symptoms, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number, or go to the nearest emergency room.

The dosages in this article are typical dosages provided by the drug manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Lialda for you, they will prescribe the dosage that’s right for you. Always follow the dosage that your doctor prescribes for you.

As with any drug, you should not change your dosage of Lialda without your doctor’s recommendation. If you have questions about the dosage of Lialda that’s right for you, talk with your doctor.

Besides learning about dosage, you may want other information about Lialda. These additional articles might be helpful to you:

Disclaimer: Medical News Today 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.