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potassium citrate (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking potassium citrate (Urocit-K)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to it, or if you have certain conditions. Be sure your doctor knows if you have:

  • high levels of potassium in your blood (hyperkalemia);
  • kidney failure;
  • a urinary tract infection;
  • untreated or uncontrolled diabetes;
  • Addison's disease (an adrenal gland disorder);
  • a large tissue injury such as a severe burn;
  • a peptic ulcer in your stomach;
  • if you are severely dehydrated; or
  • if you are taking a "potassium-sparing" diuretic (water pill) such as amiloride (Midamor, Moduretic), spironolactone (Aldactone, Aldactazide), triamterene (Dyrenium, Dyazide, Maxzide).

You should not take potassium citrate tablets if you have problems with your esophagus, stomach, or intestines that make it difficult for you to swallow or digest pills.

Before using potassium citrate, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

If you have any of these conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take potassium citrate.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

It is not known whether potassium passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take potassium citrate (Urocit-K)?

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take it in larger amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Do not crush, chew, break, or suck on an extended-release tablet. Swallow the pill whole. Breaking or crushing the pill may cause too much of the drug to be released at one time. Sucking on a potassium tablet can irritate your mouth or throat. Call your doctor if it feels like the tablet is getting stuck in your throat when you swallow it.

Measure the liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Liquid potassium should be mixed with at least 4 ounces (one-half cup) of cold water or fruit juice. Drink the mixture slowly, over 5 to 10 minutes in all. To make sure you get the entire dose, add a little more water to the same glass, swirl gently and drink right away.

Take this medication with a meal or bedtime snack, or within 30 minutes after a meal.

Your treatment may include a special diet. It is very important to follow the diet plan created for you by your doctor or nutrition counselor. You should become very familiar with the list of foods you should eat or avoid to help control your condition.

To be sure this medication is helping your condition, your blood may need to be tested often. Your heart rate may also be checked using an electrocardiograph or ECG (sometimes called an EKG) to measure electrical activity of the heart. This test will help your doctor determine how long to treat you with potassium. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.

Do not stop taking this medication without first talking to your doctor. If you stop taking potassium suddenly, your condition may become worse.

Store potassium citrate at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the medication in a closed container.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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