Sulfasalazine (SSZ) does have several common side effects. Symptoms occur in about 33 out of 100 people taking SSZ. They include:

  • nausea
  • stomach discomfort
  • headache
  • dizziness
  • skin rash
  • low sperm count in men

Less common side effects are a low white blood cell count. It can lower your resistance to infection. Some people may also have high liver enzymes. But damage to the liver from SSZ is rare.

As with all medicines, allergic reactions can occur. Call your doctor right away if you have:

  • difficulty breathing
  • swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • hives or other rashes

Sulfasalazine is a safe and effective treatment for inflammatory diseases. These include rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, and other rheumatic diseases. Side effects can occur, but many do not last. Talk to your doctor if you have symptoms that concern you.