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Esbriet is an oral capsule consisting of a drug called pirfenidone. This medication can be purchased as a generic alternative to Esbriet. A generic alternative is just as safe and effective as the brand name as it consists of the same active ingredient (pirfenidone), only it comes in a reduced price and may have a different appearance or form. We carry pirfenidone in 200mg doses!

Esbriet (pirfenidone) is not a cure for but helps in the treatment of IPF (idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis). IPF is a serious lung disease which causes oxygen to move through tiny little air sacs in your lungs to your bloodstream where it travels to your organs. This results in scar tissue growth inside your lungs and creates difficulties for breathing. With breathing issues comes lower oxygen levels in the heart, brain, and other organs which can result in other medical problems. The cause of IPF has not yet been discovered but it is known to be progressive and can be fatal.

This medication preserves lung function by slowing down the process of IPF.

Your doctor will tell you before prescribing you Esbriet (pirfenidone) exactly how to take this medication. Follow his or her directions, they can usually be found on the prescription label if you forget.

This medication will show the most effective results if it is taken at the same time every day with food. Esbriet is taken (usually) 3 times a day and will have an increase in strength over the first 15 days of treatment.

Week one consists of 1 capsule at a time. Week two consists of 2 tablets at a time. The third week will consist of 3 capsules at a time. Do not exceed more than 3 doses per day.

Ensure when Esbriet is not in use, it is closed tightly shut and is store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.


Some medical conditions as well as medications to treat those conditions shouldn’t be mixed with Esbriet (pirfenidone) as they can cause unwanted adverse interactions and sometimes be fatal. Tell your doctor about all past medical conditions as well as all medications you are currently taking including prescription, over the counter, herbal supplements and vitamins, to determine if this medication is right for you.

Important conditions to tell your doctor about before proceeding to use Esbriet include liver disease, kidney disease and if you are a smoker.

It has not yet been established if this medication will harm an unborn baby or if it passes into breast milk. Speak with your doctor about the benefits and risks before using this medication if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

You may need to get frequent medical tests done while using Esbriet to ensure there has been no harmful effects on your lungs.

Side Effects

Common side effects of Esbriet (pirfenidone) may include:

nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite; stomach pain, heartburn, upset stomach; diarrhea; headache, dizziness, tired feeling; weight loss; cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat; joint pain; rash, skin sensitivity to sunlight; or sleep problems (insomnia).

The above side effects should not alarm you.

Serious side effects of Esbriet (pirfenidone) may include:

severe ongoing stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea; burning or pain in your esophagus or throat; or

If you have any of the above side effects, contact your doctor right away.

Signs to watch for:

liver problems--stomach pain (upper right side), easy bruising or bleeding, feeling tired, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).


What should I avoid while using Esbriet?

Avoid these three things while using Esbriet; direct exposure to sunlight or radiation; any other medications that cause sensitivity to sunlight or radiation; smoking, as you risk low effectiveness of the drug and your condition will continue progressing.

How can I manage my sun sensitivity and nausea?

To avoid sun sensitivity, you can wear sun-protective gear like hats, sunglasses and wearing full coverage clothing. You can also avoid other medications that also make you sensitive to light or use a broad spectrum sunscreen; reapply often. As for nausea, always ensure you are taking your medication with food; this may also relief any dizziness that follows your nausea.

Can I chew or crush this medication?

There have been no studies to show that Esbriet lowers in effectiveness when crushed or chewed; follow directions given to you by your doctor.

I am not good at remembering to take pills, let alone 3 a day… Is there any way I can reduce the amount of pills I need to take in a day?

You may discuss with your doctor about switching to the 801mg tablet, in which you would only need to take 1 per day. You can also set daily reminders and use a pillbox to help you remember. Taking this medication at the same time every day can also ensure you do not miss a dose.

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