Highlights for cholestyramine
cholestyramine Side Effects
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
- allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
- bloody or black, tarry stools
- severe stomach pain with nausea and vomiting
- unusual bleeding
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
- constipation or diarrhea
- heartburn, indigestion
- nausea, vomiting
- perianal irritation
cholestyramine May Interact with Other Medications
- female hormones, like estrogens or progestins and birth control pills
- heart medicines such as digoxin or digitoxin
- penicillin G
- tetracycline antibiotics
- thyroid hormones
- vitamin A
- vitamin D
- vitamin E
Take other drugs at least 1 hour before or 4 hours after this medicine, to avoid decreasing their absorption.
How to Use cholestyramine
Do not take this medicine in the dry form. It must be mixed with a liquid before swallowing. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Place the powder in a glass or cup. Add between 2 and 6 ounces of fluid. This can be water, milk, pulpy fruit juice, fluid soup, or other liquid. Mix well and drink all of the liquid. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- blocked bile duct
- an unusual or allergic reaction to cholestyramine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- pregnant or trying to get pregnant
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. Your blood fats and other tests will be measured from time to time.
This medicine is only part of a total cholesterol-lowering program. Your health care professional or dietician can suggest a low-cholesterol and low-fat diet that will reduce your risk of getting heart and blood vessel disease. Avoid alcohol and smoking, and keep a proper exercise schedule.
To reduce the chance of getting constipated, drink plenty of water and increase the amount of fiber in your diet. Ask your doctor or health care professional for advice if you are constipated.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.
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Last Updated: March 24, 2009