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Drug Info > U > Uniphyl
Please enter the drug name or
DIN (Drug Identification Number)


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Brand Name


Common Name
theophylline sustained release

In this drug factsheet:

DIN (Drug Identification Number)


How does this medication work? What will it do for me?

Theophylline belongs to the class of medications called bronchodilators. It is used to treat respiratory conditions such as asthma, emphysema, and chronic bronchitis. It relaxes the muscles in the lungs, which opens the airways. This helps to relieve symptoms associated with breathing problems such as cough, wheezing, and shortness of breath.

This medication may be available under multiple brand names and/or in several different forms. Any specific brand name of this medication may not be available in all of the forms or approved for all of the conditions discussed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here.

Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed in these drug information articles. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are being given this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.

Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.

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How should I use this medication?

The dose of theophylline sustained release is determined based on individual needs and may vary depending on the specific product used. Your doctor will adjust your dose depending on your response to the medication and the levels of theophylline in your blood.

Theophylline sustained release is taken once daily, generally in the evening. It should be taken with food or within 2 hours of a meal, to make sure that the medication is properly absorbed by the body. Swallow the tablets whole with 120 mL to 180 mL of water. This ensures the medication reaches your stomach quickly.

Tablets may be cut in half if there is a score line on the tablet, but do not crush, chew, or dissolve the tablets when you are taking them. Theophylline sustained release tablets that are not swallowed whole release the medication too quickly and may cause serious side effects.

Do not use theophylline to relieve sudden breathing attacks. It would take too long to start working.

Many things can affect the dose of a medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.

It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose and remember within 6 hours, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is 6 to 18 hours after your missed dose, take ½ your dose and then continue with your regular schedule. If it is less than 6 hours until your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.

Store this medication at room temperature and keep it out of the reach of children.

Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.

What form(s) does this medication come in?

400 mg
Each round, flat-faced, white, sustained release tablet, scored and marked "U" over "400" on one side and "PF" on the other, contains 400 mg of theophylline. Nonmedicinal ingredients: cetostearyl alcohol, hydroxyethyl cellulose, magnesium stearate, povidone, and talc. Sodium- and tartrazine-free.

600 mg
Each capsule-shaped, concave-faced, white sustained release tablet, scored and marked "U" over "600" on one side and "PF" on the other, contains 600 mg of theophylline. Nonmedicinal ingredients: cetostearyl alcohol, hydroxyethyl cellulose, magnesium stearate, povidone, and talc. Sodium- and tartrazine-free.

Who should NOT take this medication?

Do not take this medication if you:

  • are allergic to theophylline, any of the xanthines, or any ingredients of the medication
  • have coronary artery disease (when, in the opinion of the doctor, it would be harmful to stimulate the heart)
  • have peptic ulcers


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